M.S. in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI)

The HCI program is not accepting applications.

The integration of computer systems and the Internet into the working world and home life have highlighted the need for professionals who can design human-computer interfaces that allow people to work intuitively in a wider range of contexts than ever before. The M.S. in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) combines coursework in human-computer interaction with theory in allied areas such as technical communication, information design, and cognitive science, to help the next generation of designers and researchers meet the challenges these new contexts present.

Rensselaer's approach to human-computer interaction differs from other HCI programs by being centered in communication rather than computer science. While the program will provide HCI implementation skills, the focus is on understanding and addressing basic problems in human-technology interaction, including the support of social interaction. Students will learn about cutting edge areas of HCI research through advanced seminars. They will leave the program with a portfolio-ready final project that demonstrates the integration of the skills they've acquired in the program.

Graduates are prepared to work as usability engineers, information architects, interaction and interface designers, user experience/HCI designers, or web designers, depending on the specific course selections students make.


"The education and support that I received in the HCI Certificate program convinced me that Rensselaer was the only school that I should be attending to complete my Master's degree. The classes and projects in the program have given me real-world experience that I use every day at my job, and that I will continue to leverage for a successful career in the field of human-computer interaction."

Stacy A. Newman
ECM Visual Design, User Experience Team
IBM Silicon Valley Laboratory

"RPI's program stands out from the majority of HCI programs currently offered across the country. It is one of a handful of forward-looking programs that puts communication at the center of their vision and curricula. The program weaves together a solid base in the theory and practice of technical and professional communications, rhetoric, visual communication, design, and media and perception studies, and it merges it with other relevant disciplines, such as cognitive psychology, computer science, instructional technology, and graphic design."

Dr. Barbara Mirel
Research Scientist, School of Information
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor