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Department of

Industrial Design

Associate Dean

Seda McKilligan PhD

Professor, Industrial Design

Mailing Address

Dean's Office
134 College of Design
Ames, IA, 50011

Contact Information

Phone: (515) 294-0737
Office: 134D Design

Dr. McKilligan is the Associate Dean for Academic Programs in the College of Design and a Professor of Industrial Design. She is also a faculty in Human Computer Interaction Graduate Program.

Research and Teaching:

Dr. McKilligan teaches design studios and lecture courses on developing creativity and design thinking skills. Her current research focuses on identifying impacts of different factors on ideation of designers and engineers, developing instructional materials for design problem and solution spaces, and exploring foundations of innovation. She often conducts workshops on design thinking for a diverse range of groups including student and professional engineers and faculty members at different institutions.


PhD, University of Michigan, 2010
MFA, University of Michigan, 2004
BID, METU, Turkey, 2001

On the Web

Supporting Files

Research Interests

DR. McKILLIGAN researches design approaches and ideation, ethnography in design, foundations of innovation, creative processes, and cross-disciplinary design team dynamics. Many of her studies involve multiple disciplinary professional and educational contexts, as she often collaborates across disciplines, working with scholars in engineering, education, industrial design, and psychology.

She is the author of more than 80 peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings. She frequently serves on review, advisory, and scientific boards of various journals and conferences. She also has a faculty affiliation with Human Computer Interaction.

Her google scholar profile:

A direct link to her interview with the everydayinnovator: 

A summary of her work on Design Heuristics:

A summary of her work on Ideation Flexibility: