In this class, you will learn basic principles of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) for the design and evaluation of software systems. Includes research methods for studying human-machine interactions and user interfaces; design strategies; software evaluation methods; and related guidelines and standards. PREREQS: Grad standing in CS or permission of instructor.
There will be no programming. However, a significant portion of your grade
will be based on a team project Here are possible projects to choose from.
At the completion of this course, students will be able to:
Describe HCI design processes.
Discuss HCI design guidelines, their foundations, assumptions, advantages, and weaknesses.
Describe basics of human subjects research.
Complete a basic human subjects research certification form.
Design a user interface based on analysis of human capabilities and needs, and prepare a prototype system.
Evaluate user interfaces using a variety of HCI research methods.
Make an oral presentation that justifies design decisions.
How the course will be conducted, method of instruction
We will run this class as an "HCI clinic". You will act as the "HCI doctors" to apply your emerging skills to healing "HCI patients" -- systems whose UIs probably need improvement. Thus, it is a hands-on course.
To do this, you will
be required to work on group projects (~4-person groups) and
classwork (in addition to doing readings) outside of class
time. This class will also be very interactive. Participation
will count towards your final grade, and I want a healthy
discussion in each class session.
This class will meet an average of only 3 hours per week in the classroom, because the hands-on component will require significant meeting times with your teams as well. The in-classroom sessions are shown on the Schedule below.
You are responsible for having done the reading before attending class
that day and be ready to participate in the discussion.
I may not go over all the reading material in class, preferring
to spend that time elaborating or discussing that material with you.
This does not mean the assigned reading is not important, or will not
be covered in a test.
I have high expectations.
Thus, in this class, "A" does not mean
"adequate" or "nothing really wrong": instead, it means "excellent". For an A, you
should expect to work hard and get the most you can out of the class.
Student performance will be evaluated via projects and assignments, a midterm exam, a final exam, and active participation. Weights will be Projects and assignments 45%, midterm 25%, final 25%, and 5% for participation.
Note: The team receives one grade for the group project. However, allocation of the grade among team members will in some cases not be equal, if team members do not contribute relatively equally to the effort.
Required:Designing with the Mind in Mind, 2nd Edition: Simple Guide to Understanding User Interface Design Guidelines, 2014,
Author: Jeff Johnson
Publishers: Morgan Kaufmann
(Available at OSU bookstore.
Also available for free as an on-line book from the OSU Library.)
Required:Trap Cards Deck Author: Medlock
Available at OSU Bookstore
We will also have selected readings from other sources, but you don't have to buy those.
This class is our community.
Every student should feel safe and welcome to contribute in this course, and it is all of our jobs to make sure this is the case. I will try to establish this tone whenever possible, but ultimately the responsibility for cultivating a safe and welcoming community belongs to the students—that means you! Fortunately, forming a safe and welcoming community is not too hard. A good place to start is to recognize (and continually remind yourself) of the following facts:
Your classmates come from a variety of cultural, economic, and educational backgrounds. Something that is obvious to you may not be obvious to them, and vice versa.
Your classmates are human beings with intelligence and emotions. This applies even when one or the other of you is posting anonymously. Rudeness and disrespect are unprofessional, and have no place in this course or in your career.
Your classmates are here to learn. They have the right to pursue their education without being distracted by others' disruptive behavior, or made uncomfortable by inappropriate jokes or unwanted sexual interest.
In short, treat your classmates as respected colleagues, support each other when needed, have fun without spoiling it for anyone else, and everybody wins.
Laptops and phones in the class
(1) You are welcome to take notes on your laptop, but this can be distracting to others, so please sit in the back if you do this. (2) If you find yourself trying to keep an eye on your emails and messages during class, know that you are missing out on a lot of information that will eventually prove useful to your project and your grade. As you'll learn in this class, we humans pay a huge cognitive tax when we try to multitask. You'll be better off as a student and a future professional if you learn to wait till after class to check your phone/etc.
Students with Disabilities
Accommodations for students with disabilities are determined and
approved by Disability Access Services (DAS). If you, as a student,
believe you are eligible for accommodations but have not obtained
approval please contact DAS immediately at 541-737-4098 or at
DAS notifies students and faculty members
of approved academic accommodations and coordinates implementation of
those accommodations. While not required, students and faculty members
are encouraged to discuss details of the implementation of individual
Getting low fidelity prototypess into Mockups: to do this, just scan them in from sketches, then add "shape" controls on top of the buttons, links, etc. that you have drawn on there, make them 25% opacity so that you can see the drawing beneath them, and make them "live" by linking the covering shapes to the right next screen.)
What do HCI researchers work on? Here is the Advance Program for ACM's 2012 CHI conference, which is the primary conference in HCI. There are several papers and events with OSU authors on the program. :-)
M: Teams and Projects, Re-designing with PRICPE (Walmart's online grocery: enter zipcode 01085).
Also project introductions by Pam Van Londen, Jillian Coleman, Beatrice Moissinac, Nicholas Nelson, Abhijeet Agnihotri
W: Analytical Evaluation and Personas
Analytical Evaluation (HE, CW, GOMS): Read Rogers handout 15.1-15.2 (pp 505-518) and part of 15.4 (pp 521-524). Retrieve from Canvas.
Analytical Evaluation: Read GenderMag-Heuristics document (retrieve from Canvas).
T and T: #1 (Invisible element), #2 (Effectively invisible element).
Week 3 (4/16...)
Learning about your users
Data gathering about users: Read Rogers handout
(Canvas): 7-7.4, 7.6-7.6.1.
Human Perception: From Johnson book, start reading ch 1-4 (pp. 1-48)
Monday: midterm exam (Here is a sample from CS352 with sample answers. CS352 is the undergrad HCI intro course). Bring a printout of your team's Project #2 (Heuristic Evaluation). Make sure the screenshots on it are readable, as you'll be working with them. Also bring your TandT card deck.
Wednesday: no class
No readings assigned. But feel free to start on next week's readings if you want to.
Start Project 4
Week 8 (5/21...)
Monday: Design Gallery: bring your posters and set up around the room. (Feedback form, open until Wed., 5/23.)
Mon, Wed: Foundations and strategies: Human attention and Attention Investment, Surprise-Explain-Reward, Information Foraging Theory
Human attention: Read remainder of ch 8 from Johnson book (pp. 107-116)