Fresh From the Oven: HCI Class of '09 Takeaways and the Move to Work

Session Title

Fresh From the Oven: HCI Class of ’09 Takeaways and the Move to Work


Jonathan Cohen, Roundarch

Session Type: Presentation

Recently graduated HCI masters students give a crash course / refresher in the basics. Followed by a discussion about the transition to professional practice.

Part 1: 20 Minutes, 2 years of academic takeaways. Plus, if enough attendees are grad students or thinking about it, some “if I could do it agains”.

Part 2: The gap between IxD grad school instruction and its practice, job search tips, how to stay on top of the field, cross-disciplinary basics.

Target audience: Practitioners with < 3 years of experience, graduate students and academic faculty.

Needs: 2-3 more 2009 HCI grads to put on the session. In aiming for a diverse group, I'm trying not to hit up people at Roundarch or U of M who fit the bill. =)"


I’m Jon – I’m a recent HCI grad from the University of Michigan. I work in the User Experience group at Roundarch:

In the past, I’ve been fortunate to hold titles such as Web Marketing Specialist (McAfee) and Production/Story Assistant (Fox).

On the side, some friends and I work on an iPhone music instrument app, which will hopefully be in the app store by September 15th, but don’t hold your breath for Apple’s approval process… =) To learn more check out

Looking forward to your thoughts on the presentation, and if you’re a 2009 HCI grad and interested in being a part of the session, please get in touch:


  1. Posted September 17, 2009 at 10:34 am

    Hey! Don’t forget to throw in a pitch about RA company. Good luck! Cheers :)

  2. Ben McNeil
    Posted September 17, 2009 at 11:20 am

    Great idea for a presentation. It serves a target market that often does not have much for them at a conference like this. In addition, many of us, myself included, have no formal academic background in this field and it provides us with a great reference as to what is being taught in schools right now.

    One more thing…the “U of M” is Minnesota :)

  3. chris daly
    Posted September 21, 2009 at 10:36 am

    The big thing I would liek to see mentioned in this prezo is the transition from school oriented partial project life cycles to business world full project life cycles. The number one thing that trips “fresh form the oven” HCI’s up is that they start work on a project and need to stick with it far longer than is the case when working on class work that is rarely longer than a semester.

  4. Dan Shaw
    Posted September 27, 2009 at 1:17 pm

    This is a great presentation topic. One major gap between grad school and industry is the inclusion of considerations that don’t always exist in the classroom (e.g., development timelines, technological limitations). The practical challenges (and benefits!) of working with cross-disciplinary teams are often addressed at a high-level in the university … the first few projects after graduation can be eye-opening.