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REPRIORITIZING THE
RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN HCI
RESEARCH AND PRACTICE
COLIN M. GRAY
IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY
!
ERIK STOLTERMAN
MA...
METHODS AREN'T MERELY
ENACTED IN PRACTICE
(Rogers, 2004; Stolterman & Pierce, 2012)
WE DON'T STUDY DESIGN PRACTICE
(IN GEN...
METHODS IN RESEARCH
ALL IS NOT AS IT SEEMS
(Roedl & Stolterman, 2013)
"...the researchers in their descriptions of
design practice commonly engage in
an over-general...
(Roedl & Stolterman, 2013)
"...a lack of consideration for practical
challenges in design work, such as
working within lim...
OUR STUDY
Image	
  courtesy	
  of	
  Sean	
  Munson	
  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/83413148@N00
13 UX PRACTITIONERS
Conception and use
of design methods
Information about
two specific methods
We define design methods broadly, as any
intellectual or practical support that a
practitioner might use to support the des...
Image	
  courtesy	
  of	
  Curtis	
  Gregory	
  Perry	
  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/curtisperry/62118986
Image	
  court...
Yes No N/A
Affinity Diagramming
Concept 10 2 15%
Historical Context 0 12 16%
Affordances
Concept 10 1 23%
Historical Conte...
Name 

(Pseudonym)
Years of
Experience
Vocational 

Background
Cheryl 10+ Business
Abbie 20+ Computer Science
Vicki 4 HCI
...
Too much "big language" and not
enough "beer and steak" interactions
with peers
ABBIE
"scrappy" design methods
v.
"textbook" design methods
VICKY
Designers want methods that are easy to
explain to their clients and easy to
visualize, for the purpose of assisting them
...
Image	
  courtesy	
  of	
  See-­‐Ming	
  Lee	
  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/seeminglee/4556156477
UNDERSTANDING "CORES"...
A GENERATIVE MODEL
TRICKLE DOWN
BUBBLE UP (researcher led)
BUBBLE UP (practitioner led)
DIMENSIONS OF THE MODEL
• Disseminating agents
• Communities involved (and power relations)
• Location of appropriation/ab...
Image courtesy of Mary Madigan!
https://www.flickr.com/photos/marypmadigan/9505064987
TRICKLING DOWN
Image courtesy of Mary Madigan!
https://www.flickr.com/photos/marypmadigan/9505064987
TRICKLING DOWN
Slow & institutionali...
BUBBLING UP
Image courtesy of mullenkedheim!
https://www.flickr.com/photos/mullenkedheim/5101515763
BUBBLING UP
Image courtesy of mullenkedheim!
https://www.flickr.com/photos/mullenkedheim/5101515763
Practitioner
driven
Re...
BUBBLING UP
Image courtesy of mullenkedheim!
https://www.flickr.com/photos/mullenkedheim/5101515763
Researcher
driven
STUD...
BUBBLING UP
Image courtesy of mullenkedheim!
https://www.flickr.com/photos/mullenkedheim/5101515763
Practitioner
driven
EN...
BUBBLING UP
Image courtesy of mullenkedheim!
https://www.flickr.com/photos/mullenkedheim/5101515763
Practitioner
driven
Re...
CYCLE AROUND
CYCLE AROUND
Tightly coupled
Iterative and constructive
Lessened power relations
WHAT'S NEXT?
• Exploring paths for future research and
dissemination
• Partnering with practitioners and generating/
legit...
THANK YOU
NSF GRANT #1115532
!
!
UXDESIGNPRACTICE.COM | COLINGRAY.ME
Reprioritizing the Relationship Between HCI Research and Practice: Bubble-Up and Trickle-Down Effects [Full Presentation]
Reprioritizing the Relationship Between HCI Research and Practice: Bubble-Up and Trickle-Down Effects [Full Presentation]
Reprioritizing the Relationship Between HCI Research and Practice: Bubble-Up and Trickle-Down Effects [Full Presentation]
Reprioritizing the Relationship Between HCI Research and Practice: Bubble-Up and Trickle-Down Effects [Full Presentation]
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Reprioritizing the Relationship Between HCI Research and Practice: Bubble-Up and Trickle-Down Effects [Full Presentation]

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There has been an ongoing conversation about the role and relationship of theory and practice in the HCI community. This paper explores this relationship privileging a practice perspective through a tentative model, which describes a “bubble-up” of ideas from practice to inform research and theory development, and an accompanying “trickle-down” of theory into practice. Interviews were conducted with interaction designers, which included a description of their use of design methods in practice, and their knowledge and use of two common design methods—affinity diagramming and the concept of affordance. Based on these interviews, potential relationships between theory and practice are explored through this model. Disseminating agents already common in HCI practice are addressed as possible mechanisms for the research community to understand practice more completely. Opportunities for future research, based on the use of the tentative model in a generative way, are considered.

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Reprioritizing the Relationship Between HCI Research and Practice: Bubble-Up and Trickle-Down Effects [Full Presentation]

  1. 1. REPRIORITIZING THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN HCI RESEARCH AND PRACTICE COLIN M. GRAY IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY ! ERIK STOLTERMAN MARTIN A. SIEGEL INDIANA UNIVERSITY Photo  courtesy  of  Marcus  Spiske   https://www.flickr.com/photos/125167502@N02/
  2. 2. METHODS AREN'T MERELY ENACTED IN PRACTICE (Rogers, 2004; Stolterman & Pierce, 2012) WE DON'T STUDY DESIGN PRACTICE (IN GENERAL) (Goodman, Stolterman, & Wakkary, 2011; Stolterman, 2008)
  3. 3. METHODS IN RESEARCH
  4. 4. ALL IS NOT AS IT SEEMS
  5. 5. (Roedl & Stolterman, 2013) "...the researchers in their descriptions of design practice commonly engage in an over-generalization of design situations. We found that the researchers consistently referred to 'designers' or 'the design process' in a vague and generic way." (p. 1952)
  6. 6. (Roedl & Stolterman, 2013) "...a lack of consideration for practical challenges in design work, such as working within limited time and resources" (p. 1953)
  7. 7. OUR STUDY Image  courtesy  of  Sean  Munson   https://www.flickr.com/photos/83413148@N00
  8. 8. 13 UX PRACTITIONERS Conception and use of design methods Information about two specific methods
  9. 9. We define design methods broadly, as any intellectual or practical support that a practitioner might use to support the design process in a positive way, encompassing everything from everyday methods, techniques, and tools for idea generation and collaboration, such as the "pen and paper," whiteboard, brainstorming, dialoguing, to methods and applications for sketching and refining ideas. DESIGN METHODS
  10. 10. Image  courtesy  of  Curtis  Gregory  Perry   https://www.flickr.com/photos/curtisperry/62118986 Image  courtesy  of  Sean  Munson   https://www.flickr.com/photos/83413148@N00
  11. 11. Yes No N/A Affinity Diagramming Concept 10 2 15% Historical Context 0 12 16% Affordances Concept 10 1 23% Historical Context 3 8 23%
  12. 12. Name 
 (Pseudonym) Years of Experience Vocational 
 Background Cheryl 10+ Business Abbie 20+ Computer Science Vicki 4 HCI Phil 2 HCI Jagdish 3 HCI
  13. 13. Too much "big language" and not enough "beer and steak" interactions with peers ABBIE
  14. 14. "scrappy" design methods v. "textbook" design methods VICKY
  15. 15. Designers want methods that are easy to explain to their clients and easy to visualize, for the purpose of assisting them in communicating their design ideas.
  16. 16. Image  courtesy  of  See-­‐Ming  Lee   https://www.flickr.com/photos/seeminglee/4556156477 UNDERSTANDING "CORES" OF METHODS & ADAPTATION AND APPROPRIATION IN USE
  17. 17. A GENERATIVE MODEL
  18. 18. TRICKLE DOWN
  19. 19. BUBBLE UP (researcher led)
  20. 20. BUBBLE UP (practitioner led)
  21. 21. DIMENSIONS OF THE MODEL • Disseminating agents • Communities involved (and power relations) • Location of appropriation/abduction
  22. 22. Image courtesy of Mary Madigan! https://www.flickr.com/photos/marypmadigan/9505064987 TRICKLING DOWN
  23. 23. Image courtesy of Mary Madigan! https://www.flickr.com/photos/marypmadigan/9505064987 TRICKLING DOWN Slow & institutionalized Uni-directional Privileged
  24. 24. BUBBLING UP Image courtesy of mullenkedheim! https://www.flickr.com/photos/mullenkedheim/5101515763
  25. 25. BUBBLING UP Image courtesy of mullenkedheim! https://www.flickr.com/photos/mullenkedheim/5101515763 Practitioner driven Researcher driven
  26. 26. BUBBLING UP Image courtesy of mullenkedheim! https://www.flickr.com/photos/mullenkedheim/5101515763 Researcher driven STUDY OF DESIGN PRACTICE IN SITU ! VALUING PRACTICE ON ITS OWN TERMS
  27. 27. BUBBLING UP Image courtesy of mullenkedheim! https://www.flickr.com/photos/mullenkedheim/5101515763 Practitioner driven ENRICHING DISSEMINATION OF DESIGN KNOWLEDGE ! LEGITIMATING DESIGN KNOWLEDGE IN THE RESEARCH COMMUNITY
  28. 28. BUBBLING UP Image courtesy of mullenkedheim! https://www.flickr.com/photos/mullenkedheim/5101515763 Practitioner driven Researcher driven
  29. 29. CYCLE AROUND
  30. 30. CYCLE AROUND Tightly coupled Iterative and constructive Lessened power relations
  31. 31. WHAT'S NEXT? • Exploring paths for future research and dissemination • Partnering with practitioners and generating/ legitimating design and practical knowledge
  32. 32. THANK YOU NSF GRANT #1115532 ! ! UXDESIGNPRACTICE.COM | COLINGRAY.ME

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