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Best Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Programs, Jobs, and Salaries

Medinah Aina - May 08, 2022


Do you have a knack for design and an interest in technology? This article will introduce you to the best human-computer interaction master’s degrees and give you all the information you need to choose the best school for you. Human-computer interaction (HCI) is the study of how humans interact with computer technology. Earning a human-computer interaction master’s degree is a good idea today as it increases both your employability and earning potential.

Dive in to get a full breakdown of the best Master’s Degrees in Human-Computer Interaction and find some of the highest-paying human interaction master’s degree jobs to help you get started in the field.

Where Can I Get a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction?

You can get a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction at Carnegie Mellon University, Drexel University, Indiana University, Rochester Institute of Technology, and the University of Washington, Seattle. These schools offer high-quality education and have some of the best HCI programs in the country.

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What Schools Offer the Best Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degrees?

  • Carnegie Mellon University
  • Drexel University
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
  • University of California, Irvine
  • University of Maryland, College Park

What Are the Admission Requirements for a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction?

The admission requirements for a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction include an online application form, two or three letters of recommendation, a statement of purpose or personal essay, current resume/CV, portfolio, official transcripts, GRE scores, and a minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. The specifics of these requirements vary depending on the school.

Some schools may request all of these, while others will ask for just a number of them. However, some of them are constants in practically all school requirements, namely letters of recommendation, a statement of purpose, a resume/CV, an online application form, and official bachelor’s degree transcripts.

Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Admission Requirements

  • Online application
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Statement of purpose or personal essay
  • GRE
  • Portfolio
  • Resume/CV outlining work and academic experience
  • Official transcripts
  • Minimum of 3.0 GPA

How to Get a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction

You can get a human-computer interaction master’s degree by completing the program’s degree requirements. Each program has its specific requirements, which may differ from others. The most common degree requirements are listed and explained below.

How Many Credits Do You Need for a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction?

You need between 30 to 52 credits to earn a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction. This number varies by school, but 30 credit hours are the most common. Most of these credit hours are earned through the program’s core courses, while others are through the electives or general education courses.

During the first year of the two-year program, students complete 15 credit hours, of which three are for capstone projects. Each semester will require the students to complete six to seven credit hours.

Human-Computer Interaction Degree Requirements

  • Total of 30 – 52 credit hours
  • 15 credit hours for each program year
  • Six to seven credit hours for each semester
  • Capstone project/thesis
  • Core courses
  • General education or elective courses

Best Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Programs and Schools: Overview

School Program Accreditation
Carnegie Mellon University Master of Human-Computer Interaction Middle States Commission on Higher Education
DePaul University Master of Science Human-Computer Interaction Higher Learning Commission
Drexel University Master of Science in Information, Human-Computer Interaction and User Experience Major Middle States Commission on Higher Education
Georgia Institute of Technology Master of Science in HCI Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
Indiana University-Bloomington MS in Human-Computer Interaction Higher Learning Commission
Iowa State University Master of Human Computer Interaction (MHC) Higher Learning Commission
Rochester Institute of Technology Human-Computer InteractionMaster of Science Degree Middle States Commission on Higher Education
University of California, Irvine Master of Human-Computer Interaction & Design WASC Senior College and University Commission
University of Maryland – College Park Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction (HCIM) Middle States Commission on Higher Education
University of Washington – Seattle Master of Human-Computer Interaction and Design Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

Best Schools for Human-Computer Interaction: Top Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Programs

This section includes detailed information on the best schools for human-computer interaction master’s degree programs. This can be used as a guide to help you make the best choice for your academic career.

1

Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, PA

Carnegie Mellon University is a private research university founded in 1900 after the merging of the Carnegie Institute of Technology and Mellon Institute of Industrial Research. It is a well-respected school with over 14,500 students, over 1,300 faculty, and 110,000 alumni. It has seven schools and colleges and offers interdisciplinary programs.

Master of Human-Computer Interaction

Carnegie Mellon’s Master of Human-Computer Interaction program is the longest-running in the world. The program is designed to prepare students to become professionals in human-computer interaction, user experience, and user-centered research. The program is completed in a full calendar year and includes a seven-month capstone course.

Master of Human-Computer Interaction Overview

  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • Tuition: $25,928/semester
  • Required Credits: 36 credits
  • Program Length: 1 year
  • Learning Format: In person
  • Carnegie Mellon University Graduation Rate: 93%

Master of Human-Computer Interaction Admission Requirements

  • GPA: No minimum requirement
  • Standardized Tests: GRE, TOEFL/IELTS/Duolingo
  • Application Fee: $100
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Other Requirements: Three letters of recommendation, statement of purpose, resume, transcripts, video essay

Applying to Carnegie Mellon University

  1. Complete an online application
  2. Submit your required documents
  3. Submit your payment
  4. Optional interview (the school decides who gets to be interviewed)
  5. Wait for an admissions decision (typically takes about two months)

2

DePaul University

Chicago, IL

Founded in 1898, DePaul University is the largest Catholic research university by enrollment in North America. It has a total of 21,670 students and over 200,000 alumni. The school offers over 130 undergraduate majors and 175 graduate programs through 10 colleges and schools, both online and in person.

Master of Science Human-Computer Interaction

This program is an interdisciplinary degree that prepares students to become professionals in the HCI industry. Students in this program at DePaul University will learn user-centered and participatory design while learning to create dynamic websites, mobile apps, and desktop applications. Students must complete a human-interaction capstone to graduate.

Some of the core courses of this 52-credit program include mobile computing, social media, information systems, and computer science. The program holds opportunities for student research projects and offers many student organizations.

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Master of Science Human-Computer Interaction Overview

  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
  • Tuition: $900/credit hour
  • Required Credits: 52 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 15 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: Online, in-person, hybrid
  • DePaul University Graduation Rate: 71%

Master of Science Human-Computer Interaction Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 2.5
  • Standardized Tests: English proficiency test (For international students)
  • Application Fee: $25
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Other Requirements: Official transcripts

Applying to DePaul University

  1. Create an online account
  2. Complete an online application
  3. Submit official transcripts from all attended colleges/universities attended
  4. Submit letters of recommendation/resume
  5. Wait for acceptance decision

3

Drexel University

Philadelphia, PA

Drexel University is a private research university founded in 1891. The school has over 23,000 students, of which 14,000 are undergraduates, 9,000 are graduate students, and over 4,500 are online students. The school is highly ranked nationally and has a high job placement, with 94.7 percent of its students either working or in a graduate or professional education.

Master of Science in Information, Human-Computer Interaction and User Experience Major

This program prepares students to become professionals in designing next-generation interfaces through theoretical and practical learning. Graduates of the program will be prepared to practice user experience research, interface design, and software development. The program is comprised of three foundation courses, five core courses, electives, and a capstone course.

The program takes 45 credits to complete and prepares graduates for careers in software development, UX design, front-end design and development, and human factors engineering. As technology is becoming more and more integral to society, a program like this can help you get your foot in the door.

Master of Science in Information, Human-Computer Interaction and User Experience Major Overview

  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • Tuition: $1,355/credit hour
  • Required Credits: 45 credits
  • Program Length: 2 years
  • Learning Format: In person, online
  • Drexel University Graduation Rate: 71%

Master of Science in Information, Human-Computer Interaction and User Experience Major Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: TOEFL/IELTS
  • Application Fee: $65
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Other Requirements: Letters of recommendation, essay, resume, transcripts

Applying to Drexel University

  1. Review your program requirements
  2. Complete your online application
  3. Submit all required and supplementary materials
  4. Apply for financial assistance
  5. Check your application status

4

Georgia Institute of Technology

Atlanta, GA

More commonly referred to as Georgia Tech, the Georgia Institute of Technology is a public research university in Georgia. It was founded in 1885 and started receiving students in 1888. This highly ranked school offers various technology-focused majors and minors through six colleges and 28 schools both online and in person.

Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction

This MS program is an interdisciplinary program that aims to prepare students for the professional field by giving them practical and theoretical training in human-computer interfaces. Students of the 36-credit program choose an area of specialization from any of four schools based on their future goals and experience.

Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction Overview

  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
  • Tuition: $8,032/semester (in state); $17,704/semester (out of state)
  • Required Credits: 36 credits
  • Program Length: 2 years
  • Learning Format: In-person
  • Georgia Institute of Technology Graduation Rate: 91%

Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: GRE (Waived for the Fall 2022 session), IELTS, TOEFL
  • Application Fee: $75 (Domestic applicants), $85 (International applicants)
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Other Requirements: Statement of purpose, official transcripts, resume, portfolio, and letters of recommendation

Applying to Georgia Institute of Technology

  1. Complete the online application
  2. Submit the required documents
  3. Submit your test scores
  4. Pay your application fee
  5. Await your admissions decision

5

Indiana University-Bloomington

Bloomington, IN

Indiana University-Bloomington is a public research university founded in 1820. With over 40,000 students, it is the flagship university of the campus of Indiana University. It offers over 200 majors and 80 languages through online and on-campus formats.

MS in Human-Computer Interaction

This two-year program is designed to teach students how to shape new media, interactive tools, artifacts, and systems to make them professionals in the field. The school prides itself on being the first institution in the US to accept design to be on the same level as HCI. The program includes a capstone project that allows students to showcase their work in a design space of their choice.

The 36-credit program covers introduction courses, foundations of human-computer interaction courses, and electives. Graduates are equipped to thrive in technology, information, and engineering fields.

MS in Human-Computer Interaction Overview

  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
  • Tuition: $418/credit hour (in state); $1,330.51/credit hour (out of state)
  • Required Credits: 36 credits
  • Program Length: 2 years
  • Learning Format: In person
  • Indiana University-Bloomington Graduation Rate: 80%

MS in Human-Computer Interaction Admission Requirements

  • GPA: No minimum requirement
  • Standardized Tests: GRE (Optional), TOEFL/IELTS/Duolingo test (International students)
  • Application Fee: $70
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree or equivalent
  • Other Requirements: CV/Resume, personal statement, letters of recommendation, official transcripts, program materials, portfolio

Applying to Indiana University-Bloomington

  1. Create an online account
  2. Complete your online application
  3. Submit the required documents
  4. Pay your application fee
  5. Wait for the admissions decision

6

Iowa State University

Ames, IA

Iowa State University is a university of science and technology founded in 1858. It is a public, land-grant research university with over 30,000 students and 10 schools and colleges. It has over 800 student organizations and 100 majors that allow students to explore their passion and talents.

Master of Human Computer Interaction (MHC)

The MHC program is an interdisciplinary program that prepares students for jobs and continuing education. This program is offered in the thesis or non-thesis path and the capstone project path. Students must complete 30 credits to complete the program. Students must take a course in each core category, namely design, implementation, phenomena, and evaluation.

Master of Human Computer Interaction (MHC) Overview

  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
  • Tuition: $564/credit hour
  • Required Credits: 30 credits
  • Program Length: 3 semesters at 10 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: In person, online
  • Iowa State University Graduation Rate: 75%

Master of Human Computer Interaction (MHC) Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: GRE (Optional), TOEFL/IELTS (For international students)
  • Application Fee: $100 (For international students)
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Other Requirements: Letters of recommendation, CV/resume, statement of purpose, official transcripts

Applying to Iowa State University

  1. Apply online
  2. Submit letters of recommendation
  3. Submit a resume/CV and statement of purpose
  4. Submit transcripts
  5. Wait for your acceptance decision

7

Rochester Institute of Technology

Rochester, NY

Rochester Institute of Technology is a private research university founded in 1829. It is home to over 19,000 students from various countries around the world. The school has 12 colleges and schools, 4,000 faculty members, and over 300 clubs and student organizations. It offers undergraduate and graduate degrees both online and on campus.

Human-Computer Interaction Master of Science Degree

This program is offered in online and in-person formats. Students will learn how interactions between humans and websites, computer systems, and software are made possible. This will help them learn how to create intuitive interfaces that improve how humans interact with technology.

After graduating from the 30-credit program, students will be equipped for positions such as interaction designer, usability specialist, research associate, and mobile applications designer. The program also has a capstone project option.

Human-Computer Interaction Master of Science Degree Overview

  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • Tuition: $2,257/credit hour
  • Required Credits: 30 credits
  • Program Length: 2 years
  • Learning Format: In person, online
  • Rochester Institute of Technology Graduation Rate: 71%

Human-Computer Interaction Master of Science Degree Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: GRE, TOEFL/IELTS/PTE (For international students only)
  • Application Fee: $65
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Other Requirements: Letters of recommendation, official transcript, computing experience, personal statement, course prerequisites

Applying to Rochester Institute of Technology

  1. Complete your online application
  2. Submit all required documents
  3. Submit test scores
  4. Pay your application fee
  5. Wait for your acceptance decision

8

University of California-Irvine

Irvine, CA

University of California in Irvine is a public land-grant research university founded in 1965.  It offers 222 degree programs to over 37,000 students from undergraduate to graduate levels. There are 84 master’s degree programs available, 48 of which are ranked among the best in the country .

Master of Human-Computer Interaction & Design (MHCID)

The MHCID program offered by UCI is a one-year interdisciplinary program available only in a mixed or hybrid format. Graduates can expect to thrive in user experience research and design, interaction design, information architecture, product design, and human-computer interaction.

Students must complete nine courses in one year, as well as a substantial project component for a real external client. That being said, students do not need to complete a total number of credit requirements for graduation.

Master of Human-Computer Interaction & Design Overview

  • Accreditation: WASC Senior College and University Commission
  • Tuition and Fees: $49,600/year
  • Required Credits: N/A
  • Program Length: 1 year
  • Learning Format: Hybrid
  • University of California-Irvine Graduation Rate: 85%

Master of Human-Computer Interaction & Design Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: GRE (Optional)
  • Application Fee: N/A
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Other Requirements: CV, statement of purpose, letters of recommendation, unofficial transcript, portfolio (optional)

Applying to University of California-Irvine

  1. Complete an online application
  2. Submit a statement of purpose, resume, and letters of recommendation
  3. Submit transcripts
  4. Submit portfolio
  5. Acceptance decision

9

University of Maryland-College Park

College Park, MD

The University of Maryland-College Park is a land-grant research university founded in 1856. It is the flagship of the University System of Maryland which has 12 schools and colleges and offers over 300 degree programs from undergraduate to graduate level. The school has over 41,000 students, 800 student clubs, and 4,000 faculty members.

Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction (HCIM)

This 30-credit program is designed to train students to become professionals in creating innovative technologies. It uses an interdisciplinary curriculum that prepares students to use technology to leave a social impact and transform the present world. It teaches theoretical and practical skills and hands-on learning to prepare students to join the workforce after the program.

Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction (HCIM) Overview

  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • Tuition: $768/credit (in state); $1,706/credit (out of state)
  • Required Credits: 30 credits
  • Program Length: 2 years
  • Learning Format: In person
  • University of Maryland-College Park Graduation Rate: 87%

Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction (HCIM) Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: GRE(Optional), TOEFL/IELTS (Optional)
  • Application Fee: $75
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Other Requirements: Transcripts, statement of purpose, CV/resume, portfolio, letters of recommendation, supplementary materials, Maryland state residency information

Applying to the University of Maryland-College Park

  1. Complete an online application
  2. Submit your letters of recommendation
  3. Submit transcripts
  4. Submit test scores
  5. Pay application fee

10

University of Washington-Seattle

Seattle, WA

Founded in 1861, the University of Washington-Seattle is a world-renowned public research college university with over 54,000 students annually. It has 18 schools and colleges across various fields that offer certificate programs to graduate degree programs through online and on-campus learning formats.

Master of Human-Computer Interaction and Design

This 46-credit program is an interdisciplinary program offered by four departments for 11 months. Available to students from various academic backgrounds, the program is designed to train students to be professionals who can combine the creativity of design and the study of human behavior with engineering techniques.

Master of Human-Computer Interaction and Design Overview

  • Accreditation: Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
  • Tuition: $1,153/credit
  • Required Credits: 46 credits
  • Program Length: 1 year
  • Learning Format: In-person
  • University of Washington-Seattle Graduation Rate: 82%

Master of Human-Computer Interaction and Design Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: English proficiency (For international students)
  • Application Fee: $85
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Other Requirements: Personal statement, letters of recommendation, resume/CV, unofficial transcripts, supplementary materials

Applying to University of Washington-Seattle

  1. Complete your online application
  2. Upload your required documents
  3. Designate your recommenders for your letter of recommendation
  4. Pay your application fee
  5. Submit your application

What Is a Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree?

A human-computer interaction master’s degree is an interdisciplinary two-year postgraduate program. It is designed to equip students with the theoretical and practical skills needed to understand, design, and use the interactions between computer technology and humans.

The human-computer interaction degree program consists of behavioral sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities, and sciences. This allows students to choose an area of specialization between psychology, user experience design, product design, industrial design, and interactive computing.

The program may be offered as a thesis/non-thesis program or capstone project program. The thesis path prepares students to start a role while the project path gives students hands-on experience. HCI typically doesn’t have any academic background requirement, so students with any bachelor’s degree can apply.

How Important Is a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction?

A Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction is important if you want to pursue a career in the field. However, it is not necessary if you have a background in computer science as most companies don’t request it. There are multiple certifications you can earn as evidence of skills.

A master’s degree is beneficial for those who want to break into the tech industry but don’t have a background in the academic field. This degree will give you the necessary knowledge and skills needed to start a career by helping you understand the interaction between humans and computers, an in-demand skill today.

What Types of Master’s Degrees Can You Get in Human-Computer Interaction?

The types of master’s degrees that you can get in human-computer interaction are a Master of Science Degree (MS) and a Master of Arts Degree (MA). An MS explores scientific and technical expertise, while an MA focuses on humanities and theoretical understanding.

Is It Better to Get a Master of Science or Master of Arts in Human-Computer Interaction?

It is better to get a Master of Science Degree in Human-Computer Interaction if you want to pursue higher education such as a doctorate degree . This is because MS degree programs are designed to explore scientific and technical expertise, which will be applied in doctoral programs.

A Master of Arts degree is the highest degree you can pursue in this vein as it doesn’t have an opportunity for continuing education. An MA is a good option for those who want to go into the workforce directly and don’t want a doctoral degree.

What Is the Difference Between a Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree and a Human-Computer Interaction Certificate?

The difference between a human-computer interaction master’s degree and a human-computer interaction certificate is that a certificate program is used to learn new skills, while a master’s degree is used to get adequate knowledge and specialization in a field.

The main difference between a degree and a certificate is that a master’s degree proves that the student has attained a certain level of mastery, while a certificate shows that they have the necessary skills required for the field. A graduate certificate or professional certificate will typically take no more than a year to complete, while a master’s degree takes about one to two.

How Much Does It Cost to Get a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction?

According to NCES, it costs an average of $19,314 to get a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction. This amount is based on the total cost of attending public and private institutions in the US. The average cost of attending public institutions is $12,171, and the total cost of attending private institutions is $25,929.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree?

It takes one to two years to get a human-computer interaction master’s degree, depending on the school and the program. The learning format is also a factor as distance learning can lengthen the duration of a program. A two-year program done online may take about 2.5 years to complete.

During a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction, students will have to complete between 30 to 52 credit units. Some schools also emphasize that students have to maintain a GPA of 3.0 before graduating from the program and failing to meet this expectation can lengthen your studies.

How Hard Is It to Get a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction?

It isn’t hard to get a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction. The program admission requirements are typically easy as some do not have a minimum GPA requirement or don’t require any specific academic background. This means that students with any bachelor’s degree can enroll.

So long as you stay focused and excel in your courses, completing the program requirements shouldn’t be too difficult. The courses taken during the program can be challenging if you don’t have a strong interest in the field.

Why Should You Get a Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree?

You should get a human-computer interaction master’s degree because it is a promising field. The HCI skill is in demand by many companies today, which provides a wide range of job opportunities for you to explore after graduation. Employers tend to prefer graduates with a master’s degree, so your chances of getting hired would be much higher.

What Courses Do You Need to Take in a Master’s Degree Program in Human-Computer Interaction?

The courses you need to take in a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction program include research methods, programming languages, interaction design, data structures and algorithms, interaction design, and product design. Below is a detailed outline of possible courses you may encounter.

Research Methodsx

This course can also be referred to as user experience research methods or psychology research methods. It introduces students to standard UX research methods used to generate ideas and how they are used in the field.

Programming Fundamentals

Also referred to as programming foundations or introduction to programming, this course is designed to teach students the basics of programming. It will help them learn about the different programming languages and their purposes. It is a perfect beginning course for a student with no programming experience.

Interaction Design

This course focuses on teaching students the relationship between people and products. They will learn about the practice of design, patterns of design, and solutions to design problems. Students emerging from this course will be experts in information architecture, interaction design, and design solutions.

Human-Computer Interaction

This course is the main focus of the entire program. Some schools will have a prerequisite course that focuses on the foundations of HCI. The course will cover design’s psychological, physiological, and engineering basis. It will teach the theoretical foundations of HCI, cognitive modeling of human interactions, and task analysis techniques.

Data Structures and Algorithms

Data structures are used to store data, and algorithms are the different steps involved in problem-solving. This course will teach students the analysis and implementation of algorithms, data structures and their analysis, and the implementation and application of classical algorithms.

Continuing Education Paths for Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Graduates

After completing your Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction, you can choose to join the workforce or further your studies by earning a doctoral degree. This option is available to those who get an MS degree. You can also get professional certifications or graduate certificates in your area of specialization to further upgrade your skills in your chosen career path.

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What to Look For in the Best Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Programs

The things to look for in the best human-computer interaction master’s degree programs are accreditation, cost, school reputation, flexibility, and career services. Read more below to discover why these factors are important in choosing your dream program.

Accreditation

A good program should be offered by a nationally or regionally accredited school. Being accredited means that the school meets the quality standards expected of a good school. Employers in all industries tend to favor graduates from accredited programs.

Cost

The cost of a good Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction can be expensive. While master’s programs are typically more costly than undergraduate degree programs, the tuition should still be affordable. Choose a program that allows you to study stress-free from student debt and loans.

School Reputation

The program should be offered by a school with a good reputation, one that makes your degree respected by employers in the tech industry. When a school is known for providing quality education by the top professors, job hunting becomes easier for its graduates.

Flexibility

When a program is flexible, it makes it easier for working professionals to attend and complete the program. Students can work professionally while working towards career advancement. Graduate programs are taken mainly by working professionals, so the program needs to offer flexible programs.

Career Services

Graduates of a program need to be able to land good jobs after completion. Look for programs that offer students career services to help them navigate the job market and start rewarding careers in the human-interaction design field.

What Is the Most Affordable Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree?

The most affordable human-computer interaction master’s degree is the Indiana University, Bloomington’s MS in Human-Computer Interaction program. It costs $418 per credit hour to attend for in state students and $1,330.51 per credit hour for out-of-state students.

This brings it to a total of $15,048 for the entire program, as it requires students to complete 36 credit hours before graduation. Out-of-state students will pay a total of $47,898 for tuition for the whole program.

Salary and Job Outlook for Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Graduates

A smiling student emerging from a graduate program
Design thinking, design strategy, digital design, and usable interfaces are some technical skills needed in the human-computer interaction design field.

The field of human-computer interaction promises a wide variety of job opportunities for master’s degree graduates. This section focuses on the various job opportunities available for human-computer interaction master’s degree graduates and answers any questions you may have about the field.

How Hard Is It to Get a Job With a Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree?

It is not hard to get a job with a human-computer interaction master’s degree. The skills that this program will equip you with are in high demand by employers in various industries which puts you at an advantage. You will have the luxury of choosing which industry your skills will be of the best use.

You will have less difficulty landing a good job as there are not many people with this degree and the programs also offer career services that teach students how to navigate the labor market. Graduates can easily handle the pressure and secure great jobs. These career services include online branding, resume writing, career coaching, and interview prep.

What’s the Average Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Salary?

The average human-computer interaction master’s degree salary is $90,000 per year, according to PayScale. The actual amount will differ based on various factors, including the industry, company, and individual skills.

What Types of Jobs Can You Get With a Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree?

The jobs you can get with a human-computer interaction master’s degree are found in the design and engineering sectors. Specific examples include UX designer, software engineering or development, visual designer, and usability engineer jobs.

Human-Computer Interaction Degree Jobs

  • User experience researcher
  • Interaction designer
  • Product designer
  • Software engineer
  • Usability engineer

Potential Careers With a Human-Computer Interaction Degree

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How Much Money Can You Make With a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction?

With a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction, you can make between $75,624 and $101,481 annually depending on your specific career, as displayed in the table below. The actual amount you can earn is dependent on various factors such as the industry you work in, the company you work with, your job role, your experience, and your expertise level.

The section below covers the highest-paying master’s degree jobs and their salaries. This will give you a detailed breakdown of the duties, salaries, and job outlook of various positions open to you after graduation.

Highest-Paying Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Jobs and Salaries: Overview

Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Jobs Average Salary
Usability Engineer $101,481
User Experience Researcher $88,593
Software Engineer $88,540
Product Designer $86,344
User Experience Designer $75,624

Best Jobs for Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree Grads

The best human-computer interaction master’s degree jobs are in the research, engineering, and design fields. These types of jobs have similar roles and distinct differences that make each one stand out. Find out more on the highest-paying jobs with this degree below.

1

Usability Engineer

Average Salary: $101,481

Usability engineers conduct research to determine user expectations and ensure that a website or application is user-friendly. They are responsible for improving the function of computer hardware, software, and websites by focusing on users' satisfaction.

2

User Experience Researcher

Average Salary: $88,593

A user experience researcher is a professional responsible for researching user behavior and preference and comparing it with the website content and elements. They use this information to deliver the best experience for the users by making the website easy to use.

3

Software Engineer

Average Salary: $88,540

A software engineer combines engineering and software development principles to research, design, build, and install software applications, programs, and operating systems. They also work to enhance the performance of existing software to ensure that it meets user expectations.

4

Product Designer

Average Salary: $86,344

A product designer is responsible for defining the product specifications, creating digital or print drawings, and designing fully functional products. Their main function is to ensure that a product is functional, cost-effective, and relevant.

5

User Experience Designer

Average Salary: $75,624

It is the responsibility of a user experience or UX designer to create a pleasant and satisfying experience for the users of a product. They conduct research to find out the user's expectations and build a product that fulfills those expectations.

Best Jobs According to Your Major

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Is a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction Worth It?

Yes, a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction is worth it. It is an excellent idea for those who are already professionals and those who are looking to transition into the human-computer interaction design field. A master’s degree will provide you with the knowledge and skills required to practice and give you a higher level of mastery.

A master’s program also increases your chances of securing a well-paying job after completion. Since these degree programs typically don’t require any specific academic background, the chances of getting accepted are higher. If you choose a reputable school that provides career services, you will find it easier to navigate the job market and have a competitive advantage.

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Human-Computer Interaction Master’s Degree FAQ

What can you do with a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction?

There are various jobs you can do with a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction. Some of them are visual design, UX research, UX design, front-end development, software engineering, and product management. You can also choose to pursue higher education with a doctorate degree.

How long is a Master’s in HCI?

A master’s in HCI will typically take between one year and two years, depending on the program. However, the majority of them take exactly two years to complete.

Is HCI a growing field?

HCI is a growing field with a positive job outlook for most of its positions. Product designers have a 6% job outlook, software engineers have a 22% job outlook, and usability engineers and user experience designers have a 13% job outlook.

What skills do HCI professionals need?

HCI professionals need and develop interpersonal people skills such as cognitive skills, empathy, and communication. They also need to be proficient in technical skills such as user interface, visual design, information architecture, application development, usability testing, interactive design skills, software design, project management, and web services.

About us: Career Karma is a platform designed to help job seekers find, research, and connect with job training programs to advance their careers. Learn about the CK publication.

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Medinah Aina

About the author: Medinah is an expert copywriter and web designer, helping people learn more about education and careers in technology. She values in-depth research and providing accurate, helpful information. Medinah holds a BSc in Social Work from the University of Lagos and an Eduonix Certification in copywriting.

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