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C11272v1 Graduate Certificate in Interaction Design

Award(s): Graduate Certificate in Interaction Design (GradCertIDes)
Commonwealth supported place?: No
Load credit points: 24
Course EFTSL: 0.5
Location: City campus


This course is not offered to international students.

Course aims
Career options
Course intended learning outcomes
Admission requirements
Assumed knowledge
Recognition of prior learning
Course duration and attendance
Course structure
Course completion requirements
Course program
Articulation with UTS courses
Other information


Interaction design is concerned with designing interactive digital products, digital environments, systems, and services that can satisfactorily meet the needs and desires of the intended users. The Graduate Certificate in Interaction Design prepares and equips students with up-to-date theoretical knowledge and requisite practical industry-standard skills in this rapidly advancing field.

This is an entry-level course, part of an articulated postgraduate program in interaction design.

While industry demand for skilled interaction designers and various other jobs, such as user experience (UX) designers, service designers etc., is increasing, there is a lack of formal education/training offered by universities in interaction design. This course is designed to provide students with the most current and requisite skills in this fast-evolving field. Graduates possess skills in industrially applicable and cost-effective information environments (i.e. multimedia, interactive systems design and associated information technology). The course provides industry with graduates who can combine these skills with those of their original discipline in professional applications-oriented settings.

The course is committed to producing graduates who have a deep understanding of human-centred approaches to designing digital technologies. This ensures that 'products' created are more likely to 'fit' meaningfully into users' lives, because the design process is informed by a deep understanding of people's practices, particular situations and values.

The Graduate Certificate in Interaction Design is attractive to different types of learners, namely:

  1. those who are currently working in a job that is not related to interaction design
  2. those working in jobs closely related to interaction design, and
  3. those already working in interaction design-related jobs.

Course aims

In the core subjects students learn through the practice of an iterative human-centred design process to solve a real-world problem with actual users, developing skills to analyse, generate and transmit solutions to complex problems. They also gain advanced technical and theoretical knowledge in interaction design. Students also engage with interaction design for emerging computing contexts, gaining advanced knowledge and skills.

Career options

Graduates can gain employment in a range of technology design-related roles, such as interaction designer, UX designer, UX researcher, service designer, or digital experience architect.

For those currently working in closely related jobs, such as web design, graphic design, interface design etc., this course provides the necessary formal training in the discipline in order to make a more definitive move into jobs in interaction design. Similarly, many find themselves working within the field of interaction design without formal training, and this course provides a good foundation and opportunities to extend their interaction design skills more formally.

For those not working in a job related to interaction design, this course provides the opportunity to learn about the discipline and to transition into the various jobs under the interaction design umbrella.

Course intended learning outcomes

A.0 Needs, context and systems - Engineering and IT take place within the larger context of society and the environment, which encompasses social, economic and sustainability needs
A.1 Identify, interpret and analyse stakeholder needs
A.2 Establish priorities and goals
A.3 Identify constraints, uncertainties and risk of the system (social, cultural, legislative, environmental, business etc.)
A.4 Apply principles of sustainability to create viable systems
A.5 Apply systems thinking to understand complex system behaviour, including interactions between components and with other systems (social, cultural, legislative, environmental, business etc.)
B.0 Problem-solving and design - Engineering and IT practice focuses on problem-solving and design where artifacts are conceived, created, used, modified, maintained and retired
B.1 Identify and apply relevant problem-solving methodologies
B.2 Design components, systems and/or processes to meet required specifications
B.3 Synthesise alternative/innovative solutions, concepts and procedures
B.4 Apply decision-making methodologies to evaluate solutions for efficiency, effectiveness and sustainability
B.5 Implement and test solutions
B.6 Demonstrate research skills
C.0 Abstraction and modelling - Abstraction, modelling, simulation and visualisation inform decision-making and are underpinned by mathematics, as well as basic and discipline sciences.
C.1 Apply abstraction, mathematics and/or discipline fundamentals to analysis, design and operation
C.2 Develop models using appropriate tools such as computer software, laboratory equipment and other devices
C.3 Evaluate model applicability, accuracy and limitations
D.0 Self management - Graduates must have capabilities for self-organisation, self-review, personal development and lifelong learning
D.1 Manage own time and processes effectively by prioritising competing demands to achieve personal goals (Manage self)
D.2 Reflect on personal and professional experiences to engage in independent development beyond formal education for lifelong learning
E.0 Communication and coordination - Engineering and IT practice involves the coordination of a range of disciplinary and interdisciplinary activities to arrive at problem and design solutions
E.1 Communicate effectively in ways appropriate to the discipline, audience and purpose
E.2 Work as an effective member or leader of diverse teams within a multilevel, multidisciplinary and multicultural setting
E.3 Identify and apply relevant project management methodologies
F.0 Professional practice within global context - Graduates must possess skills, knowledge and behaviours to operate effectively in culturally diverse workplaces and a changing global environment
F.1 Be able to conduct critical self-review and performance evaluation against appropriate criteria as a primary means of tracking personal development needs and achievements
F.2 Appreciate ethical implications of professional practice
F.3 Understand cross-cultural issues (regions or workplaces)
F.4 Be aware of global perspectives (needs, rules/regulations, and specifications)

Admission requirements

Applicants must have completed a UTS recognised bachelor's degree, or an equivalent or higher qualification, or submitted other evidence of general and professional qualifications that demonstrates potential to pursue graduate studies.

It is a requirement that the bachelor's degree was completed with no more than 25 per cent of subjects failed.

Applicants who do not satisfy the above academic requirements may be considered on one of the following:

  • Completed Associate Diploma and RATE Diploma; or
  • Completed TAFE/AQF Advanced Diploma or Diploma (or overseas equivalent); or
  • New Zealand technical and vocational NQF Level 5-7


  • Minimum two years' full-time equivalent related work experience post completion of study;
  • Submission of resume and proof of work experience.

The English proficiency requirement for local applicants with international qualifications is: Academic IELTS: 6.5 overall with a writing score of 6.0; or TOEFL: paper based: 550-583 overall with TWE of 4.5, internet based: 79-93 overall with a writing score of 21; or AE5: Pass; or PTE: 58-64; or CAE: 176-184.

Eligibility for admission does not guarantee offer of a place.

Assumed knowledge

This course does not require formal training in IT, but experience in IT would be an advantage. Some subjects require development of various implementation skills, and so an enthusiastic approach to development of technical proficiency is important, but no previous knowledge is expected.

Recognition of prior learning

Recognition of prior learning is not offered for subjects in this course.

The substitution of core subjects to an alternative postgraduate subject in a similar field of study may be granted.

Course duration and attendance

The course duration is one year of part-time study.

Course structure

This course totals 24 credit points of study, consisting of four interaction design core subjects.

Course completion requirements

STM91221 Core subjects A (Interaction Design) 24cp
Total 24cp

Course program

A typical part-time program for students commencing in Autumn session is shown below.

Autumn commencing, part time
Year 1
Autumn session
42017 Fundamentals of Interaction Design   6cp
42070 Prototyping Physical Interaction   6cp
Spring session
32509 Advanced Interaction Design   6cp
95563 Storytelling and Sense-making Studio   6cp

Articulation with UTS courses

This course is part of an articulated program comprising the Graduate Certificate in Interaction Design, the Graduate Diploma in Interaction Design (C06123), the Master of Interaction Design (C04222), and the Master of Interaction Design (Extension) (C04234).

Students who wish to articulate from this course to either of the master's courses are typically eligible for 24 credit points of recognition of prior learning.

Other information

Further information is available from:

UTS Student Centre
telephone 1300 ask UTS (1300 275 887) or +61 2 9514 1222