Designing for People | DFP Graduate Training Program: Description & Requirements
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DFP Graduate Training Program:

Description & Requirements

Because of its highly cross-disciplinary nature, the DFP graduate training program is structured as 12 credits of specialization components that enrich another degree program. You will receive a degree in your home department, completing its requirements; within this degree’s electives, your training will be enhanced with a unique DFP experience and connection to a life-long cohort and network. You will gain core knowledge from anchor courses and electives, apply it in cross-disciplinary teams that address problems defined by industry, then complete a research thesis with your DFP supervisor(s). You will present your work to DFP industry partners, potential employers and other end users during an annual Design Showcase: in your first year, your team DFP Project, and in subsequent years, your thesis research. As a graduate, you will have learned to transcend disciplinary boundaries to work in teams that advance new products through the design, user research, and product management pipeline.


DFP Core: In Year 1, students will take two DFP Core courses: Fundamentals in Designing Interactive Computational Technology for People (waived with evidence of excellent performance in an equivalent introductory Human-Computer Interaction course); and the DFP Project, a team-based project sponsored by industry and public-sector partners.  [Additional details]

Electives: Students will take 5 credits of DFP designated electives, offered through DFP partner departments or schools, including courses on research methods, visualization, policy, informatics, entrepreneurship, security and privacy.

Professional Development

Students will participate in the HCI@UBC Colloquium Series, a DFP Workshop Series (Ethical Practices, Prototyping, Portfolio) and an Annual Design Showcase for industry and community partners and potential employees. Students select and attend at least three workshops from UBC’s Graduate Pathways to Success program.

DFP Summer School

Students organize short courses on student-chosen topics by distinguished guests, invited on their behalf by the DFP graduate training program.


Students complete a thesis in their home department supervised by one or more DFP faculty members.