Postgraduate qualifications in Informatics & Design

Cape Town has been voted “World Design Capital 2014”, and the city has chosen to “live design” so as to “transform life”.  But, will “design thinking” solve real-world problems? 

The Faculty of Informatics & Design at CPUT has chosen to adopt Design Thinking as the foundation of a new post-graduate cohort, undertaking multi-disciplinary research that will address real-world problems within existing degrees in Information Technology, Design, Architectural Technology, Town and Regional Planning, Public Relations Management, Business Information Systems and Office Management and Technology and Informatics.

Masters or doctoral applications are invited from suitably qualified persons, both part-time and full-time.

Research themes

Indicative research themes put forward by staff of the faculty (with contact information) include:

Instructional Design for E-Learning

This cohort will focus on elements regarding the design and development of learning materials and programmes that make use of the latest technology to optimise teaching and learning. Students who graduate from this course will be experts in the field and will be able to develop and consult in the field of effective e-learning. (cronjej@cput.ac.za)

Communication, Media and Branding

The more communicators, designers, branding and media practitioners understand about the processes involved in how they “design” communication and messages, the more effective they will become.  Students will explore the nature of non-linear and creative approaches of Design Thinking to optimize the content and form of all communication, teaching, journalism, social networking, photography, PR, branding, marketing, advertising and art, resulting in a personal design philosophy. (elsabe.pepler@gmail.com)

Design in context

This cohort will step out of the detail of design itself and look at the context in which it happens in terms of the people, places, artefacts and organisations that comprise that context.  Factors such as “social networking”, “crowd sourcing”, “big data”, and the “information society” all impact on the design of organisations and processes in ways that need to be understood through design research. (bythewaya@cput.ac.za)

Innovation design and adoption

Exploration and design of innovative and adoption of systems and processes caused by the expansion of the Internet and increasing use of web-based technologies and social media. Areas covered are e-commerce, m-commerce, e-business, e-learning, e-banking and others. This expansion resulted in new business distribution channels and the ability to reach wider markets than by traditional business means. The implementation of ICT infrastructure has created a gap between developed and developing countries and these issues also need to be addressed. (wardens@cput.ac.za)

Social media to re-design information and knowledge sharing systems

Current channels and platforms are not effective in capturing inter alia tacit knowledge. On the contrary, corporate social media can drastically improve the way knowledge workers share information and knowledge within an enterprise. The focus of this theme will be on developing design principles for the corporate social media that enterprises can apply to implement and store their information and knowledge. (vanbrakelp@cput.ac.za)

Design for digital inclusion

This cohort consists of two research streams (i) The first will conduct research on topics which study existing instances of ICT adoption and use of the Internet in public access environments so as to inform both government policy as well as the design of new models and contexts in which ICTs are deployed in especially underserved communities.  (ii) The second will be involved in research which aims to design innovative devices and interfaces to deliver information and media rich content to communities in especially non-urban settings. (pathers@cput.ac.za)

Information Communication Technology for Development (ICT4D)

The IT Department supports research in different areas such as in business (enterprise architecture, alignment, emotional intelligence, leadership); community empowerment (informal learning, online support); mobile development (m-learning, m-health, m-agriculture); e-government, interoperability, computational modelling, etc. The research forms part of an international network of research projects with a strong community focus within different contexts.  New post graduate qualifications in health informatics are being implemented with a special focus on nursing informatics, maternal healthcare, mental healthcare and home and community based care.  Students will become part of existing research groups.  (delaharper@cput.ac.za)

Website design for visibility and usability

"Website Design" traditionally implied the choice of technical platforms and technologies used to produce a working, interactive, web-based system. These elements are important, but do not necessarily portray the view of a search engine crawler when indexing or the experience a human visitor has when interacting with a website. Since these two are crucially important towards the success of a system of this nature, they deserve further research effort. Students in this field will work on the causes and effects of, and the synergy between visibility and usability in an ongoing attempt to make the Internet experience a more productive one, and to address real-world research problems. (weidemanm@cput.ac.za)

Programme outline

The programme is structured as a research degree by full thesis, with compulsory research seminars offered once a week, during evenings for the first six months.Initiallythe entire cohort will meet as a group.  As students develop their area of specific interest, cohorts aligned to each of the research themes will meet with designated study leaders and co-supervisors. Scoping of individual research topics will be finalised within 3 months and final research proposals (to be submitted to the Higher Degrees Committee) within six months. From past experience, part time Masters degrees could be completed within three years and Doctorates within five years. The first orientation session will take place on 16 April 2012.

Registration details

Application form

Completed application forms, academic transcripts and a recent CV must be e-mailed or delivered to:

Ms Veda Naidoo
Telephone: 021 469 1012
naidoove@cput.ac.za
Postgraduate Office (Room 2.30)
80 Roeland Street, Vredehoek, Cape Town

Or

Faculty of Informatics and Design
Cape Peninsula University of Technology
PO Box 652
Cape Town 8000

All applications will be evaluated according to their academic record and applicability of previous qualifications and work experience.

Qualifications

MTech (Architectural Technology)

MTech (Design)

DTech (Design)

MTech (Information Technology)

DTech (Information Technology)

MTech (Public Relations Management)

DTech (Public Relations Management)

MTech (Town and Regional Planning)

MTech (Business Information Systems)

MTech (Office Management and Technology)

DTech (Informatics)

 

Official closing date for applications: 30 April