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Master of Science in

User-Centered Design

Part-time, fully online. Your master's degree is within reach.


Master of Science in User-Centered Design

Design personalized solutions for a user's heart and mind

Many professionals currently working in IT, web development, digital marketing and computer science share the belief that the way people experience design is critical to the success of any creation. These experts represent a growing movement of designers who seek to produce technologies that adapt to the user rather than attempt to force behavioral change. 

As a student in the Brandeis GPS User-Centered Design program, you'll learn alongside working professionals looking to advance their careers along with their educational goals. The program will equip you to:

  • Identify the human factors that influence user response.
  • Apply social and psychological principles to predict user response.
  • Build prototypes and evaluate design effectiveness, analyzing qualitative and quantitative information.

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The 30-credit part time, online master's degree has seven required courses and three electives.


Part-time, fully online, financially accessible

The 30-credit User-Centered Design degree has seven required courses and three electives. Required courses provide students with a focused education surrounding fundamental topics in the field, while electives build upon specific professional skillsets and allow students to enrich and round out their studies.

Sample Spring 2019 curriculum

Please note that available courses are subject to change.

Required courses

  • Innovation and User-Centered Design
  • Cognitive and Social Psychology of UCD
  • Information Architecture
  • Prototyping and Evaluation
  • Information Visualization Theory & Techniques
  • Design Operation and Leadership
  • Capstone 

Sample electives

  • UX Design Processes
  • Design of Non-Screen User Experiences
  • Agile Project Management
  • User Interface Design
  • Web Development Technologies
  • Mobile Applications and Responsive Web Design

View a complete list of program requirements

View tuition and financing options

The user-centered design industry

Gain insights into the field

Professionals specializing in user-centered design are in high demand. In fact, Glassdoor has identified UX design jobs as #9 on their current list of best jobs in America. 

Leading organizations that are currently hiring user-centered designers span multiple industries and include:

  • Amazon.com
  • IBM
  • Deloitte
  • Microsoft Corporation
  • Apple Inc.
  • Estee Lauder
  • General Electric Co.
  • Disney
  • Emc
  • Hewlett-Packard

Students seeking a master's in this industry often hold job titles such as:

  • Interactive Designer
  • User Experience Designer
  • Senior User Experience Developer
  • Human Factors Engineer
  • User Experience Researcher
  • UX Architect
  • User Experience Strategist
  • UX Design Associate
  • User Experience Engineer
  • Web Developer


Our students

By the numbers

The program is 37% male and 63% female.

19 students are currently working toward their User-Centered Design degree.

The program launched in fall 2015.

“While a student at Brandeis, I discovered new opportunities and pathways for professional growth that I never realized existed.”
— Theresa Harrigan, Class of 2015

User-Centered Design

Meet our featured faculty

Our User-Centered Design faculty understand the challenges of modern industry. Whether they’re developing technologies for higher education communities or advocating for design innovation, they structure their GPS curriculum to draw on real-world expertise and connections that ultimately help our students advance their career goals. Here is a sampling of our User-Centered Design faculty:

  • Candra Gill is a Senior User Experience Architect at the Home Depot working on mobile application experiences. She has worked in the UX field in corporate environments, marketing agencies, and on projects for non-profit organizations. 
  • Jennifer Sullivan McGinn is a Senior Director of UX at CA Technologies, and has spent more than 20 years working as a UX leader, designer, user researcher, technical trainer, and writer at companies including Oracle, Nokia and Sun Microsystems. She regularly presents at local, regional, and international UX conferences, and has published peer-reviewed papers on persona development, heuristic evaluation, Agile user research, and usability rating scales. Jen has a BS in Information Systems Management from UMBC, and an MS in Human Factors in Information Design from Bentley University.
  • Debra Michalides is a User Experience Design Consultant and adjunct professor with a decade of designing enterprise level products and services for diverse industries such as retail, legal services, medical and educational publishing for clients such as Lowes, Allstate, Cengage Learning and Wolters Kluwer. Her approach to design has been described as bringing clarity to chaos aligning different product ideas from many perspectives into one cohesive product version. Debra received her undergraduate B.F.A. in Graphic Design from The Art Institute of Boston and her M.F.A in Design and Technology from Parsons School of Design. 

Visit the Rabb School faculty directory for a full list of Brandeis GPS faculty.

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Brandeis GPS is committed to giving you the support you need to succeed. From the moment you begin the application process to the day you graduate and beyond, our advising team is here to support you. Talk to an enrollment advisor today.

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Online Learning

Learn more about our unique approach to online learning and what makes a Brandeis GPS education so engaging.