Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Semester 2
CS22120 or CS22420.
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 20 Hours.
Seminars / Tutorials


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Exam 1.5 Hours   50%
Semester Assessment User Centred Design of Computer System. Approx 25 hours  50%
Supplementary Exam Will take the same form, under the terms of the Department's policy. 

Learning Outcomes

This module will enable the student to incorporate principles of user centred design into the development of applications built on modern windowing systems.

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

  • design and implement effective user interfaces, making appropriate use of development techniques.
  • apply task and user modelling techniques to the design and evaluation of an interactive system.
  • appreciate the limitations of human capacities, and identify how they affect design choices.
  • evaluate ethical situations and make professional judgements on them.


This course deals with the issue of how systems should be built in order to make them understandable by, and accessible to, users. Principles of good interface design are introduced and applied to the issue of human computer interaction. The course also considers methods and tools for achieving good computer interface design.


1. Fundamental principles of good design - 3 Lectures

Functionality. Usability. Socio-technical system interaction. Task and dialogue levels.

2. Models for Human Computer Interaction - 3 Lectures

Mental models. Taskflow models. Dialogue interaction models. Interface metaphors.

3. Methods for Human Computer Interaction - 4 Lectures

Requirements specification. User interface design. Evaluation techniques. Standards for HCI and requirements.

4. Guidelines for screen interfaces - 4 Lectures

HCI characteristics, human cognitive abilities, attention, short-term memory, use of colour. Web acessibility issues.

5. Ethical issues - 3 Lectures

Difficult ethical issues. Examples from the Internet. Evaluating ethical issues and developing decision skills for difficult situations.

6. Current and future developments - 2 Lectures

Changing issues in user interface design, and new research developments.

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number No.
Communication Written skills will be needed to complete examination and coursework.
Improving own Learning and Performance See 2 above .
Information Technology The whole module concerns this area.
Personal Development and Career planning Module looks at quite `new¿ areas of computing ¿ may lead to new options in career choice
Problem solving This is inherent to the topic.
Research skills The students will need to search for and use relevant technical information while completing practical work.
Subject Specific Skills Yes. See module title and content.
Team work No.

Reading List

Recommended Text
Ben Shneiderman (1998) Designing the User Interface 3rd Ed. Addison Wesley Primo search
Consult For Futher Information
Donald A. Norman (1988) The Psychology of Everyday Things Harper Collins Primo search Jenny Preece (ed) (1992) A Guide to Usability: Human Factors in Computing Addison-Wesley Primo search William M. Newman and Michael G. Lamming (1995) Interactive System Design Addison Wesley Primo search


This module is at CQFW Level 5