Carolyn MacGregor

Associate Professor & Associate Chair Undergraduate Studies

Contact InformationCarolyn MacGregor

Phone: 519-888-4567 x35566,519-888-4567 x32897
Location: E5 6128,EC4 2129


Biography Summary

Carolyn MacGregor is an Associate Professor and the Associate Chair Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Systems Design Engineering at the University of Waterloo.

Dr. MacGregor's research applies her engineering and psychology degrees to the study of human factors, product design, and virtual environments. Her primary research interests are in the navigation and manipulation of virtual environments and 3D simulations, usability testing and human-computer interactions, and pedestrian and driver safety.

Her current projects include the development of virtual trailblazing techniques for human navigation, as well as the development of the "veball”, a 3D input device with haptic feedback for manipulating virtual objects in 3D applications. Dr. MacGregor has been actively involved in human factors research and consulting activities since 1980.

Her main areas of teaching focus on human factors engineering, user-centred design, user research methods, and cognitive ergonomics. As a discipline, human factors engineering is a combination of engineering, psychology, kinesiology and anthropology. The field of cognitive ergonomics strives to understand how humans process and manipulate information so that their limitations and capabilities can be taken into account when designing effective tasks, interfaces, and systems.

Research Interests

  • individual differences
  • information manipulation
  • usability testing
  • human-computer interaction
  • driver performance and safety
  • Cognitive Ergonomics
  • Road Safety
  • Virtual Environments
  • Ergonomics
  • Human Factors & Biomedical


  • 1993, Doctorate, PhD, Industrial Engineering (Human Factors), University of Toronto
  • 1988, Master's, MASc, Industrial Engineering (Human Factors), University of Toronto
  • 1983, Bachelor's, Honours BA, Co-op Psychology, University of Waterloo


  • SYDE 261 - Design, Systems, and Society
    • Taught in 2014
  • SYDE 348 - User Centred Design Methods
    • Taught in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
  • BME 101 - Communications in Biomedical Engineering-Written and Oral
    • Taught in 2014
  • SYDE 101 - Communications in Systems Design Engineering-Written and Oral
    • Taught in 2014
  • SYDE 161 - Introduction to Design
    • Taught in 2014
  • SYDE 401 - Seminar
    • Taught in 2014
  • SYDE 461 - Systems Design Workshop 2
    • Taught in 2014
  • SYDE 402 - Seminar
    • Taught in 2015
  • SYDE 462 - Systems Design Workshop 3
    • Taught in 2015
  • SYDE 162 - Human Factors in Design
    • Taught in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
  • SYDE 644 - Human Factors Testing
    • Taught in 2015
* Only courses taught in the past 5 years are displayed.

Selected/Recent Publications

  • MacGregor, Carolyn and Talukdar, Taneem and Bains, Jasvir and Jo, Jason, Designing Design Team Experiences: Creating STeamER, Proceedings of the Canadian Engineering Education Association, 2011