Interface design

Working alone or with your Tech in the Wild partner, propose a redesigned interface for some technology you observed during Tech in the Wild. The first step is to identify the technology whose interface you plan to redesign The focus here is on the interface--don't fundamentally redesign the technology, but redesign how the user interacts with it, understands it, creates meaning with it.

Be clear about the scope of the interface as you understand it. Are you redesigning a software dashboard? The physical form of a tool? How users interact with a space? This should be the result of several design iterations. The readings for the next two weeks of lecture provide lots of concepts that can be helpful here. Be prepared to share your design in class.


Your detailed interface, in a format which visually or materially communicates the (re)designed interface. If the result is a digital document it should be comparable in detail to the interface design case studies. If it is a functional prototype, it needs to enact specific design choices rather than exploring a general idea. A functional prototype is different from a conceptual prototype. If you are designing an interface for a machine that has buttons, your interface needs to have buttons. They don't have to do anything, but they do need to reflect specific decisions about what, where, how.

A brief writeup explaining your design choices in terms of the intended users and the learning goals. Explain how you want your user to think or interact with your interface, and connect this to specific design choices in the interface as well as to observations and insights from your Tech in the Wild report. Aim for ~300 words. Possible formats:

  • Annotated screenshots, wireframes, or sketches (See Teacher Portal or Student Journalism in the interface design case studies)
  • A list of user stories with interface features supporting them (See Interactive Storytelling in the interface design case studies)
  • Several paragraphs summarizing your design process, explaining what you were trying to achieve and options you considered for achieving it.


  • ✓ + Meets all requirements described above. Connections between theories of learning and theories of design are explicitly connected and engage with specific evidence from your design research to make a compelling case of how and why the proposed interface might be effective.
  • Meets all requirements described above. The documents or artifacts you create feel considered and complete. The interface is explicitly connected to a theory of learning, draws on your design research, and is informed by theories of design considered in lecture.
  • ✓ - Does not meet the requirements described above.