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729G22 Interaction Design

Course information

Work process

The course consists mainly of group work with projects from external clients. The work during the course can be broken down into three separate steps: User research, Concept design and Prototyping. The process as a whole, including important deadlines, is described on a general level here.

Learning Objectives

Interaction design is a central part of good IT and systems development. It has importance for several different roles of an organisation that aims to develop systems that actually work for the people they are intended for.

You will in this course learn to use appropriate methods to create usable and well-designed systems. The focus is on designing the system in terms of how it should work and look for the people who will use it, and on how to research needs and present situations.

On completion of the course, the student should be able to:

  • Conduct user research, in particular: (a) plan, perform and report qualitative user research; and (b) modeling results of user research with personas, scenarios, and design goals.
  • Do concept design and requirement definition, specifically: (a) generating and forming alternative concepts of interactive systems, and in a structured way, choosing concept based on personas, scenarios, and design goals; and (b) defining requirements for the design of an interactive system based personas, scenarios, and design goals.
  • Create paper prototypes and conduct basic usability measurement, especially (a) create and demonstrate a prototype with a low degree of detail (i.e. low fidelity) of an interactive system based on scenarios and requirements; and (b) plan, implement and report on usability testing with basic quantitative measures.
  • Discuss gender and sustainability aspects of interaction design.

Working and Teaching Methods

The course is composed by:
  • Lectures,
  • teaching sessions,
  • project work in groups, with written and oral presentation,
  • project supervision and tutoring,
  • individual, written report based on the project work (decides the grade), and
  • course literature (see below)


Feedback from teachers are given to the groups during supervision and tutoring. Written feedback is given on the individual report.

Course Literature

Each student reads two of the three books listed below. Make sure all books are represented within the project group. Reading suggestions can be found in the process overview.
  • Book: Goodwin, K. (2009). Designing for the Digital Age - How to Create human-Centered Products and Services, Wiley. ISBN: 978-0-470-22910-1.
  • Book: Saffer, D. (2007). Designing for Interaction - Creating Smart Applications and Clever Devices. New Riders. ISBN: 0-321-43206-1
  • Book: Arvola, M. (2014). Interaktionsdesign och UX - Om att skapa en god användarupplevelse. Studentlitteratur. ISBN: 978-91-44-09764-0.
  • Article: Marc Rettig, Prototyping for tiny fingers, Communications of the ACM, Vol. 37, No. 4, 1994. http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/175276.175288
    Read this article on paper prototyping if you cannot read the Swedish book by Arvola (2014).
  • Article: Jonas Löwgren, Interaction design - brief intro. In Mads Soegaard and Riike Friis Dam (Eds.), The Encyclopedia of Human-Computer Interaction, 2nd Ed. n.d.. https://www.interaction-design.org/literature/book/the-encyclopedia-of-human-computer-interaction-2nd-ed
    An introduction to the field.
  • Online resource Usability.gov (OK, 28/9 2017)
    Good resource on usability testing among other things.
  • Articles for the individual assignment:
    Marsden, N., & Haag, M. (2016). Stereotypes and Politics: Reflections on Personas. In Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI '16), (pp. 4017-4031). New York, NY: ACM. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/2858036.2858151.
    Raghavan, B., & Pargman, D. (2017). Means and Ends in Human-Computer Interaction: Sustainability through Disintermediation. In Proceedings of the 2017 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI '17) (pp. 786-796). New York: ACM. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/3025453.3025542.
  • Supplementary readings for the interested student:
    Arnowitz, J., Arent, M., Berger, N. (2006). Effective Prototyping for Software Makers. Morgan Kauffman.
    Cooper, A., Reimann, R., Cronin, D. (2007). About face 3: The essentials of interaction design. New York, NY.: John Wiley & Sons.
    Mullet, K., & Sano, D. (1995). Designing visual interfaces: Communication oriented techniques. Mountain View, CA.: Sun Microsystems, Inc.


Slides from lectures will be posted below in conjunction with the lectures.

Course Communication, Ethics and Copyright

Communication with Teachers: Current information and news about the course is always published on the course website. You are required to keep an eye on news and changes that are published on the site. When you contact the teachers by email, always use the email address that you got through the university, and you also need to keep an eye on information from the teacher that may be mailed to your LiU account. Teachers are not expected to reply during evenings and weekends.

Research and Design Ethics: Be sure to always have informed consent from people who involved in your study or who appear in text or images in your student work. Anonymize them if possible. Make sure that they are aware of the aims and possible future use of their participation. See the HSFR guidelines for research ethics (in Swedish) or the Guidelines for Research Ethics in the Social Sciences, Law and Humanities from the National Committees for Research Ethics in Norway (in English). See the AIGA Standards of Professional Practice for guidelines for professional ethics in design.

Copyright: You own the copyright to material produced during your studies, but the university reserves the right to use the material produced during the course of informational, educational and research purposes, unless you explicitly say otherwise. This means that some projects may be included in the preparatory material for next year's students. Student work may also be used in contexts where the university in various ways is presented. A transfer of copyright from students to an external client requires an explicit agreement (in writing) between the students and the client.

Page responsible: Johan Blomkvist
Last updated: 2017-09-28