MHCI+D Capstone Information for Sponsors


The MHCI+D Capstone project is a structured, team-based project that allows students to apply and practice the methods they are learning with guidance from faculty and industry professionals. The goal is to deliver a comprehensive project that demonstrates an end-to-end design process, incorporates exposure to real world business considerations, and provides practice across a range of presentation and communication formats. See past projects on our Capstone page

Students begin their project exploration with secondary research on thematic problem spaces and techniques for framing effective projects in Winter Quarter. By the end of Winter Quarter, interdisciplinary teams of graduate students will form and choose project proposals to work on for the remainder of the program.

The typical student team of 3 to 4 students will have various backgrounds and experience levels, typically in the range of 3-5 years of professional experience and previous study in technology, design, or user research related fields.

In Spring Quarter, project teams plan and practice a range of user research techniques to inform design concepts and prototypes. In Summer Capstone Studio, the final quarter of the program, students work as full time project teams with guidance from instructors and industry sponsors to complete their proposed solutions, including concept development, prototyping, and refinement. At the end of Summer Quarter, student teams present their final project solutions to the university community, program faculty and industry sponsors and mentors. Activities planned for 2019 include a special dub seminar and open houses for industry and family and friends to come into the studio, chat with the students about their process and findings, and see the finished projects.

Project Schedule

Project Stage Time Frame
Front End User Research April through early June
Concept Development May through early June
Prototyping and Evaluation June through mid-July
Design Refinement and Presentation July through mid-August

How to get involved

The time commitment involves attending a couple of scheduled activities and presentations on campus as well as spending on average an hour a week meeting with student teams to provide feedback on project deliverables and progress from early April through end of August. Meetings can take place at your place of business, on campus, or by conference call as your time allows.

If you’d like to learn more about Capstone Project Sponsorship please contact the Associate Director of Academic Services, Mary Larson with any questions or to discuss a sponsoring a project.

If you are interested in learning more about MHCID but cannot take on a Capstone sponsorship at this time, we are always looking for industry practitioners to engage with our students, such as guest lecturing, critiquing student work, sponsoring a quarter long class project or workshop, and recruiting. Please get in touch, we’d love to work with you!

Is there a cost to sponsor a project?

Although not required, we encourage donations to either the MHCID Program Support Fund or the MHCID Student Support Fund. These funds support student project resources such as research gratuities, equipment and facility rental, or travel to sponsor or research locations off-campus, as well as graduate student fellowships for incoming students. Please contact the Program Director, Michael Smith, for guidance on program donations.