Super excited that our (Omar Sosa-Tzec and John M. Carroll) submission to SIGDOC was accepted and that we’ll be publishing a full paper in the ACM digital library to accompany the presentation. The paper takes an existing thread of my research in an exciting new direction, and I couldn’t have done it without the insight […]

new publication

Great news! We have a new publication out today summarizing some of the work we’ve been doing in an online debate community ( In particular, we discuss how conflict can serve as well as undermine the work that moderators do, and we highlight ways that UI design could be a scalable way to facilitate conflict […]

GroupMe Projects

For the final project in my undergrad human-centered design class this year, I gave students a design brief focused on GroupMe. The challenge was broad, and the deliverables were diverse and interesting. In addition to generating presentations, I asked students to create one-sheets showcasing their projects. One of the teams (David Lu, Alex Yun, Kevin […]

New Human-Centered Design Syllabus

We’re closing in on the end of the spring semester here at Penn State University, and, unlike in year’s past, I’ve already finished my syllabus revisions. Download the new version here. The speediness of these revisions is due to a stellar graduate student who is also the instructional assistant who helped me teach the class […]

Scenario-based Design Courses

I’m looking for syllabi or links to online courses focused on scenario-based design. Instructive case studies, methods, tools, techniques, and assignments. All of it. If there aren’t lots of resources out there, then I’m also curious to know whether there is an interest for such a course.  


After a great interview / campus visit, during which I got to meet stellar members of the faculty, staff, and students, I was offered an assistant professorship in the UX program at the Milwaukee School of Engineering. I accepted the offer and am eager to start this coming fall semester! This was the one I […]

Academic Job Interview Questions

I went on the academic job market last fall, and, with help and support from friends, colleagues, and people I’ve never met, I managed to succeed in finding a position at a primarily undergrad institution in Milwaukee, WI. Hooray! More about that soon. Navigating the interviews before arriving at an offer was challenging. I prepared […] Product Ratings

I teach an introductory course on human-centered design here at Penn State, and the students in my class recently completed a redesign of the product rating system on I gave them an abstract design brief, which meant that they were responsible for scoping the problem and generating a solution. This is a great cohort […]

Visual Thinking + Discourse Analysis

One question many discourse analysts ask when they’re familiarizing themselves with data is: how could things be different? If you’re comfortable messing around with Photoshop and your text includes images, then you can create sketches as a way of making these hypothetical differences more concrete. Sketching is a powerful way to explore the effects of, […]

design course development

I’ve been sketching some new ideas for undergraduate design courses, and, although I came up with these with a particular program in mind, they could easily be iterated on to fit within many other curricula, as electives, etc. I’m sharing them here so that you might be inspired to take an idea and run with […]