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Module Descriptor School of Computer Science and Statistics

Module CodeCS4051
Module NameHuman Factors
Module Short Title
Semester Taught
Contact Hours
Module PersonnelDr. Gavin Doherty
Learning Outcomes

When students have successfully completed this module they should:

  • Understand the concept of usability and the different facets of the problem.
  • Have an awareness of available techniques for interaction design and usability improvement
  • Know when it is appropriate to apply these techniques within the software development process.
  • Understand and be able to describe Norman's framework for interaction.
  • Understand the challenges faced in the design of groupware systems, and the aspects of human communciation which are relevant to these systems.
  • Have an awareness of the factors which influence human performance, and the major concepts relevant to human error.
  • Know how to construct a Hierarchical Task Model (HTM) with an associated scenario description
  • Be able to discuss and critique the interface of a specific interactive system with reference to a task model and its associated scenarios.
  • Know how to design a simple usability testing experiment
    Understand the practical issues involved in conducting an experiment.
Learning Aims

Students will understand the main issues underlying the usability of systems, and the main techniques and processes for interface design and evaluation. They will also gain a basic understanding of the theories which account for human performance.

Module Content

Specific topics addressed in this module include:

  • Usability
  • User capabilities
  • Interaction models
  • User interface design process
  • Task analysis
  • Evaluation
  • User Interface Architectures
  • Co-operative work and groupware
  • Cognitive modelling
  • Human error
  • Interaction in context
Recommended Reading List

Interaction Design, 4th edition. J. Preece , Y. Rogers, H. Sharp, 2015.

Module Prerequisites
Assessment Details

Two major coursework assignments include both group and individual components, together with a small number of in-class exercises. The coursework constitutes 30% of the module marks. The exam constitutes the remaining 70%.

Module Website
Academic Year of Data