Dean Nieusma, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute;
James W. Malazita, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Michael Lachney, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
David A. Banks, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Brandon Costelloe-Kuehn, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Posted: September 7, 2015

Rensselaer’s STS Department has pioneered the integration of STS and design thinking, with over 20 years of research and educational programming. A major achievement within this larger set of activities is our acclaimed interdisciplinary Programs in Design and Innovation (PDI), a set of undergraduate dual-major programs combining a range of technical majors with an STS-styled design major called Design, Innovation, and Society. PDI brings STS to the worlds of engineering, computer science, business management, and communications—all via design. Rather than merely augmenting these programs with STS, PDI strives to frame our students’ entire educational experience—that is, to provide the curricular, conceptual, and pedagogical frameworks that situate students’ other coursework as well as their identities within a more expansive vision of technology-in-society. This presentation details PDI’s curricular structure, its innovative pedagogies, the range of design focal areas covered, sample student work, and some modes of integration with instructors’research.