Improving Designs and Designers with Massive Online Peer Assessment, Examples and Rubrics

PI: Scott Klemmer, PhD


In Spring 2012, Stanford launched its first online HCI class, hci-class.org. This class, taught by the PI, introduces students to a human-centered design process. Approximately 40,000 students from around the world enrolled in the class. These students possess a diverse range of backgrounds, occupations, and experiences. This widespread interest in this online class has resulted in the confluence of two wonderful opportunities: First, it creates an unprecedented research platform to study design thinking at scale, and the diversity of students enables experiments impossible in a traditional setting. Second, it provides a platform to understand how to integrate design thinking and prototyping theory developed through our prior HPDTRP‐sponsored research into work processes across the world.

We plan to leverage this fortuitous development to further research into design thinking. Based on recent research in our group and experience with hci-class.org, it is hypothesized that providing rich, situated, actionable feedback through peer assessment will improve design outcomes and designers’ learning. Furthermore, we hypothesize that combining such feedback with relevant examples will provide designers with a concrete way to improve design.