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Yale Gordon College of Arts and Sciences

Course Descriptions



IDIA Course Descriptions

View the schedule of classes to determine course offerings by semester.

  • IDIA 612 Interaction and Interface Design (3)
    Explores electronic publication environments as fluid spaces where interactions among people, machines and media (words, images, sounds, video, animations, simulations) must be structured for the unforeseen. The course focuses on planning, analyzing, prototyping and integrating interaction design with interface design. Lab fee required. prerequisite: PBDS 660 or passing score on the Hypermedia Proficiency Exam
  • IDIA 614 Sequential Visualization and Analysis (3)
    Teaches students to use sequential visual narratives—storyboards, flowcharts, prototypes and simulations—as analysis tools for the development of information systems. The course draws on theoretical approaches to film as well as other forms of visual storytelling, including animation, illustration and comics. Through a series of practical, analytical and creative projects, students learn to apply storyboards and limited multimedia prototypes to interface design and develop content. Lab fee required. prerequisite: PBDS 660 or passing score on the Hypermedia Proficiency Exam
  • IDIA 616 Designing for Mobile Web (3)
    Hands-on application and site development for the mobile Web. Students learn current programming languages and development environments for the latest mobile devices and work intensively on a major mobile design project. Lab fee required. prerequisite: PBDS 660 or passing score on the Hypermedia Proficiency Exam
  • IDIA 618 Dynamic Web Sites (3)
    Familiarizes students with the basic concepts and vocabulary of Web site programming, including application scripting, database management, object-oriented programming and full-lifecycle software development. Provides students with the fundamental skills required to develop and maintain a dynamic, data-driven Web site. Each student develops a complete Web site using a simple text editor to create and manipulate relational data, learn a middleware markup language to store and retrieve data and control the rules of interaction, and write HTML to format data and control display. Lab fee required. prerequisite: PBDS 660 or passing score on the Hypermedia Proficiency Exam
  • IDIA 619 Interactive Multimedia (3)
    Practical and theoretical introduction to genres, strategies and techniques for producing interactive multimedia projects for the Internet. Students learn to program with a scripting language such as Action Script to create interactive information tools such as games, simulations and dynamic Web sites. Background readings provide theoretical and practical context for development of individual projects. Lab fee required. prerequisite: PBDS 660 or passing score on the Hypermedia Proficiency Exam
  • IDIA 620 Information Culture (3)
    Surveys important developments, implications and problems in the development of modern information technologies, emphasizing their relevance to the Internet and other current contexts. Students are expected to become conversant with the technical and intellectual roots of technological development and at the same time understand important social issues surrounding that development. Beginning with the transition from orality to literacy and moving through the emergence of print, the course situates innovation in larger narratives of cultural change and historical process, continuing into the post-Cold War expansion. Instructors focus on various relevant themes that may include electronic democracy, the digital divide, globalization and postnationalism, identity and security issues, and the social implications of “mass” versus “hyper” media. Lab fee required.
  • IDIA 622 Social Media for Organizations (3)

    Introduces the use and administration of social media tools within an organization. Topics include implementation, management and policy issues surrounding these technologies. Requires students' active participation within online social communities. Lab fee required.
  • IDIA 625 Interaction Design for Games (3)

    Advances a student's knowledge of game software design by examining interaction and interface design concepts as they relate to game design. Introduces students to human-computer interaction concepts pertaining to game design through the examination of input devices, on-screen displays, feedback to the user, and usability research. Students demonstrate their knowledge by generating game interfaces and interaction design that involves developing and user-testing a prototype game during the semester. Lab fee required. prerequisite: IDIA 612

  • IDIA 630 Information Architecture (3)
    Teaches students to gather requirements data, model information structures and develop a variety of documents to communicate the information architecture to other participants, including technical experts, usability experts, clients and users. Students learn to determine a target audience, develop personas or user profiles, refine and validate requirements and create site maps and other “specs” and wire frames. Lab fee required. prerequisite: PBDS 660 or passing score on the Hypermedia Proficiency Exam
  • IDIA 640 Humans, Computers and Cognition (3)
    Introduces concepts, theories and methods that support the study of human-computer interaction and user-centered system design. Major approaches to machine-mediated learning and understanding are surveyed, with an emphasis on problem-solving, knowledge representation, structure of knowledge systems and problems of interface design. Prepares students to understand and analyze research based on empirical study of human behavior and on models of learning and understanding. Lab fee required.
  • IDIA 642 Research Methods (3)
    Introduces the chief methods for studying users’ interactions with software and information resources. Encompasses both quantitative and qualitative methods, including analysis of logs, indirect observation, traditional usability studies and ethnographic techniques. Lab fee required.
  • IDIA 730 Topics in Advanced Information Architecture (3)
    Intensive exploration of topics in advanced information architecture of mutual interest to students and faculty. Content varies depending on the interests of faculty and students. Course may be repeated for credit when topic changes. Lab fee required. prerequisite: PBDS 660 or passing score on the hypermedia proficiency exam in addition to IDIA 630
  • IDIA 742 Topics in User Research (3)
    Intensive exploration of topics in user research of mutual interest to students and faculty. Content varies depending on the interests of faculty and students. Course may be repeated for credit when topic changes. Lab fee required. prerequisite: PBDS 660 or passing score on the hypermedia proficiency exam in addition to IDIA 642
  • IDIA 750 Special Topics (3)
    Intensive exploration of topics in hypermedia, information architecture or interaction design of mutual interest to students and faculty. Course may be repeated for credit when topic changes. Lab fee required. prerequisite: PBDS 660 or passing score on the Hypermedia Proficiency Exam
  • IDIA 790 Independent Study (1-3)
    Research or problem-solving project in some aspect of publications design. Topics and number of credits vary with individual student interests. Lab fee required. prerequisite: permission of program director
  • IDIA 798 Continuous Enrollment (1)
    Provides continuing faculty direction, academic support services and enrollment services for students who have completed all course requirements for the degree but have not completed a thesis or final project. Students continue the independent work leading to finishing the thesis or final project that is significantly under way. Course may be repeated for credit as needed. Eligible for continuing studies (CS) grade; otherwise grading is pass/fail. prerequisite: completion of all course requirements for the degree program
  • IDIA 799 Thesis/Project (3-6)
    Preparation of a work of original research or a substantial interactive or interface project displaying practical knowledge of relevant research. Each student develops a substantial project or produces a master’s-level thesis. Projects and research are presented to program faculty for critique. Eligible for continuing studies (CS) grade; otherwise grading is pass/fail. Lab fee required. prerequisites: PBDS 660 or passing score on the Hypermedia Proficiency Exam, and permission of program director
  • IDIA 810 Proseminar (3)
    Provides students with the opportunity to build research contexts and refine plans for their degree projects. Generally includes discussion and analysis of a topic having common relevance to the projects under development. Engages students in constructive critique of project ideas and in sharing research resources and approaches. Lab fee required. Required of all D.S. students prior to taking the qualifying examination.
  • IDIA 842 Methods for User Research (3)
    Introduces empirical user research methods such as contextual inquiry, ethnographic field studies, card sorting, image collaging and usability testing that provide the foundation for user-centered interaction and communications design. Lab fee required.
  • IDIA 898 Continuous Enrollment (1)
    Provides continuing faculty direction, academic support services and enrollment services for students who have completed all course requirements for the degree but have not completed a thesis or final project. Students continue the independent work leading to finishing the thesis or final project that is significantly under way. Course may be repeated for credit as needed. Eligible for continuing studies (CS) grade; otherwise grading is pass/fail. prerequisite: completion of all course requirements for the degree program
  • IDIA 899 D.S. Project (1-6)
    Research and work connected to the doctoral project under the direction of a faculty adviser. A minimum of 6 semester hours is required for the D.S. in Information and Interaction Design degree. Eligible for continuing studies (CS) grade; otherwise grading is pass/fail. Lab fee required.