Who's Gonna Teach the Next Generation?

Session Title

Who’s gonna teach the next generation?


Martin Tomitsch, Jeremy Yuille

Session Type: Discussion

How we should educate interaction designers is a hotly contested topic. All design programs face the challenge of career readiness, namely: how do we train graduates who can ‘hit the ground running’ in professional settings while also ensuring that we keep a steady flow of researchers and academics who will keep the academy alive and vibrant?

There is a growing gap between the academy and the profession. Not only do these two sides of interaction design evolve at a different pace, but they also have very different motivations and goals. While either side may not agree on what should be done about the situation, it’s safe to say that neither can exist without the other; so lets think about ways to design a more complimentary relationship!

We want to add to the ongoing discussion around IxD education by exploring what the requirements and expectations of interaction design professionals for interaction design education are, and how this might be integrated with academic requirements.

We invite both professionals and academics to join us for a facilitated discussion around these issues. Notes will be kept and distributed afterward for followup action.

Who knows? maybe we’ll even do something about it!


Martin Tomitsch is a researcher and lecturer at the University of Sydney. He teaches Interaction Design (undergrad) and Human-Computer Interaction (postgrad). In his free time (aka ‘research’) he likes to think about interactions beyond the screen. This quest has also inspired his PhD on the use of interaction design methodologies for designing smart environments, which he completed in 2008. Before joining the University of Sydney he taught User Interface Design and Usability Engineering at the Vienna University of Technology and worked as usability consultant at a Vienna-based R&D spin-off.

Jeremy Yuille is an interaction designer, digital media artist and academic with a background in digital art, music, performance and architecture. He has a Bachelor of Design Studies from the Architecture department of the University of Queensland and a Masters of Design from SIAL at RMIT University. Jeremy is a co-founder of the Media and Communication Design Studio at RMIT, where he undertakes collaborative research with the Australasian CRC for Interaction Design (ACID), supervises postgraduate students, and holds interaction design studios. He is also a certified scrum-master, and a director of the Interaction Design Association.

As teachers in design programs, both Jeremy and Martin are very experienced with facilitating professional and student input in a discussion format. They can also tap-dance when required.