With the interdisciplinary lab (iLab), St. Pölten UAS offers an innovative elective semester in which students in cross-programme teams intensively engage in a project from the idea to its concrete implementation. They learn from an interdisciplinary perspective to grapple with real-world challenges or problems and attempt to find solutions. In the process, they acquire a broader perspective of the specialised discipline underlying their studies.

The iLab brings together students from all over the world and a wide range of disciplines to work towards an innovative solution for a specific challenge. In addition to learning important specialized knowledge, the students also train their own initiative, self-organization, independence and self-responsibility.

Alois Frotschnig, Initiator of iLab & Head of Department of Media and Digital Technologies

The iLab is aimed at students and incoming students in Bachelor (at least 3rd year / 5th semester) and Master programmes. It is designed as an elective module with 30 ECTS credits. The iLab is particularly suitable for students with a pioneering spirit who take pleasure in developing innovations and testing fresh ideas together with team members from different disciplines.

What can you expect as a future iLab team member?

  • Work in interdisciplinary teams
  • Intensive engagement with important topics of society
  • Out of the box thinking
  • Independent project work instead of “chalk and talk” lessons
  • International orientation with English as the working language

Facts

The iLab offers an innovative learning environment, where the students will gain and train important competences and skills for the 21st century professional in a practical manner:

  • Full time (elective modul – 30 ECTS)
  • Daily (self-determined) presence
  • Learning and teaching in English
  • Working in a self organized learning environment
  • Continuous support and ongoing feedback from labmasters und coaches

The iLab Process

In the iLab students will dive directly into a human-centered design process by being presented with a current real-world problem. By going through various iterations of the process they will try to find the real roots of the problems, the needs of the affected people and create a solution that will meet these needs and create value for the users. Throughout the design process the students apply user research methods to gain a deeper knowledge about the users and find insights about their ways of thinking, their behavior and their need in general. Creative and visual methods will accompany the students the whole process, allowing them to look at the problems and solutions from different perspectives and holistically.

Two gates will take place where students have to pitch their solutions and prototypes to judges from different professional fields, giving them the chance to get constructive feeback to further develop their solution or rethink their approaches. Also these gates will decide which problems/solutions will get further in the process or drop out. So after Gate 1 and 2 there will be new formations of the teams to continue working on possible solutions.

iLab Process

Want to be part of the iLab?

Application will be open soon.

Skills of a Future Professional

21 Century Skills

In the 21st century companies and organizations are looking for professionals that can offer a great set of different competences and skills. The iLab creates a learning environment that will help students gain and train those skills in a very practical and self-determined way. Confidence, self-directed behavior as well as being active as a professional and concerned about global issues shape the character of the future professional.

By going through a human-centered design process the students will learn to think more innovative and work creatively, balancing their intuitive and analytic thinking. They will train to think critical and responsible at the same time. Working in interdisciplinary and intercultural teams and using design research methods to get to know the end-users and their needs the students will have the possibility to deepen their communication and collaboration competences in various facets. And throughout the process it is important that the students apply their disciplinary knowledge and further develop it.

As the process, as any design process, has iterations the students will be encouraged and trained to reflect on their way of working and their handling of different situations. This will help them to develop and deepen their self-knowledge and self-awareness.

You want to know more? Feel free to ask!

Mag. Tanzer Christina, MLS

Mag. Christina Tanzer, MLS

Department Assistant
Section Head Department Organisation
Department of Media and Digital Technologies

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