Course Description

In this course we will explore the art and science of designing usable, useful and enjoyable human-computer interfaces, with an emphasis on user-centered design techniques. The importance and necessity of effective interaction design techniques will be highlighted, and current design methodologies and principles across multiple platforms will be discussed. Students will gain valuable knowledge and experience by working in groups on a term-long design project.

Effectively working in a team and both verbal and written communication skills are essential to do well in this course.

Course Objectives
  • Care about how people feel about and experience technology
  • Describe and apply key UI/UX concepts, techniques, and principles
  • Assess and describe the usability and UX of a digital interface
  • Plan, conduct, and analyze user research for a digital product
  • Conceptualize, design, and prototype a digital product
  • Apply the core principles of effective visual design
  • Plan, conduct, and analyze a usability test of a digital product
  • Participate and contribute as a member of a team
Topic Schedule
  1. What is usability and user experience design?
  2. What does a holistic user experience design process look like?
  3. How to conduct a user interface inspection?
  4. What is the practice of strategic interaction design?
  5. How to bridge the gap between the problem space and design space?
  6. What are the essentials of effective visual communication?
  7. How to design for mobile and multi-device usage?
  8. How to understand and communicate people's needs and behaviours?
  9. How to explore and communicate possible design solutions?
  10. How to plan, conduct, and summarize usability tests?
Course Assignments (tentative)

Individual (55%)

  • Weekly Reading Quizzes: 5%
  • Usability Inspection: 22.5%
  • Visual Re-design Assignment: 22.5%
  • Reflective Course Log: 5%

Team (45%)

  • User Research and Usability Testing: 22.5%
  • Design Mockups and Usability Testing: 22.5%

Reading quizzes must be submitted no later than 10:00am class day - no exceptions. Late assignments will not be accepted without valid documentation (e.g. medical certificate).

Required Textbook

Are you kidding me, in 2019? All required readings will be available on-line.