TENSIONS IN STUDENTS’ DESIGN PHILOSOPHY IN UX PRACTICE
The studio model of education incorporated in to many design-oriented HCI programs in the past two decades brings a number of objectives to programs implementing it. One objective is the building of a “bridge” between pedagogy and practice, preparing students for the differing realities between academia, and the constraints imposed in an organizational setting. The bridge also encourages the development of a student’s design philosophy, allowing them to acknowledge and understand their conceptions of design which influence decisions in project-processes, and the projected communities they may navigate towards in practice. This study addresses the dimensions of design philosophy held by students educated in these programs, and how such philosophies are engaged and shaped further in practice. Through a qualitative interview approach, this study presents 9 dimensions of design philosophy through the accounts of 10 students and practitioners, reflecting on their education and practice. Using existing work studying the flow of competence between practitioners and organizations, the discussion of the dimensions presented provides four ways in which the philosophies of practitioners may encounter tensions in practice. This research proposes future work on how the studio model in HCI pedagogy may better prepare students for enacting their philosophies, and further reflecting on the shaping of that philosophy through felt contrasts between education and practice.