The ED of the Future: an Interdisciplinary Graduate Course in Healthcare Design Journal Article uri icon



  • Six faculty members from Georgia Institute of Technology, Emory University School of Medicine, Emory Healthcare, and Perkins + Will created and taught a one‐semester course titled “The Emergency Department of the Future”. The goals of the course were to provide an environment for students to be exposed to the unique challenges of healthcare design, to experience and learn techniques for successful interdisciplinary design, and to create innovations with impact. Twenty graduate students representing five disciplines (architecture, health systems, human‐computer interaction, computer science, and systems engineering) participated in this class. The course included a series of didactic lectures covering a wide range of issues including architectural design of hospitals and emergency departments, observation techniques for working environments, electronic medical records, and patient‐centered care. Lecturers included emergency physicians, nurses, architects, human‐computer interaction researchers, and design specialists. Students developed problem statements along with prototype design solutions through these lectures, direct observation, and interaction with course faculty. The resulting projects include a mobile triage chair that takes vital signs, equipment sliders for easy functional transformation, an integrated lighting design, as well as patient assistants for self registration, communication, environmental control, and discharge support. The developed projects have generated ideas to improve emergency care that may be implementable commercial products as well as fundable projects for future research. The final presentation open house attracted over a hundred visitors from local and national healthcare facilities and industry. This presentation will highlight the structure and organization of the course as well as the resulting projects.

publication date

  • April 1, 2009

has restriction

  • bronze

Date in CU Experts

  • February 6, 2024 9:44 AM

Full Author List

  • Cowan D; Yi‐Luen Do E; Margolis M; Zimring C; Ackerman J

author count

  • 5

Other Profiles

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1069-6563

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1553-2712

Additional Document Info


  • 16


  • s1