COAP:COAP-2170

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1 Introduction

  • Disclaimer: This is not the official syllabus or course program. EdutechWiki is just used as support site.
  • The course is organized in weekly programs (available through the menu to the right...)

The course-level outcomes as announced in the syllabus are:

  1. Understand the concept of human-computer interaction (HCI)
  2. Understand the need for usable and accessible web interfaces.
  3. Understand usability guidelines.
  4. Discuss various types of disabilities and their impact on computer usage.
  5. Describe a variety of computer assistive technologies.
  6. Understand a variety of methods used to make web content accessible.
  7. Understand the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines.
  8. Implement usability and accessibility testing for web pages/sites.
  9. Successfully implement usable web page(s) that are also accessible.

Practical learning outcomes:

  1. Be able to define user experience in terms of usefulness, usability, accessibility and desirability
  2. Understand the design process and be able to participate in all stages.
  3. Be able to apply experience, interface, usability, and access guidelines
  4. Be able to use some design and usability methods

Fields covered (somewhat)

2 Weekly programs

3 Grading scale

A	3.8	Very good		92.00	
A-	3.5	Almost very good	89.00
B+	3.1	Pretty good 		85.00
B	2.8	Good			82.00
B-	2.5	Reasonably good		79.00
C+	2.1	Fair	   		75.00
C	1.8	Rather weak / minim.	72.00
C-	1.5	Minimalist / Weak	69.00
D+	1.1	Pass
D	0.8     Pass			62.00

4 Important teaching materials

Contents addressed within these texts may come up in exam questions. You are not required to memorize any of these, but you should at least read once through the short articles.\

4.1 Recommended free on-line textbooks

Reading is optional, however strongly recommended for participants who never took a web design class.

  • Patrick J. Lynch and Sarah Horton, Web Style Guide.
  • Horton, Sarah (2005). Access by Design (online) at Universal Usability: A universal design approach to web usability.

4.2 Mandatory reading list

  • Midterm: items 1-5, and 9
  • Final: all
  1. Usability guidelines
    1. Picture of the ISO usability framework
    2. Usability.gov guidelines (you can download either the whole book or individual chapters). A short summary is in Research-Based Web Design & Usability Guidelines. I don't require you to read the whole book, but you should be able to retrieve guidelines and understand how the various entries are organized (e.g. importance vs. support from research)
    3. Interface Design, a chapter from Lynch and Horton's Web Style Guide.
  2. Usability testing
    1. Usability testing on 10 cents a day. Introduces low-fi usability testing and various connected issues.
    2. Usability testing A short 1-page "how to"
    3. Diagnostic evaluation Another short "how-to" page at usabilitynet.
  3. Usability and user experience surveys
    1. Surveys (Online)
    2. Questionnaires in Usability Engineering, A List of Frequently Asked Questions (3rd Ed.), Compiled by: Jurek Kirakowski, 2000. (Read questions 3,4,8)
  4. Personas and scenarios of use
    1. Develop Personas, 1-page intro at usability.gov
    2. The Fluid Project includes more detailed information. E.g. What is a Persona?, Persona Creation and Fluid Persona Format. (just skim over these pages)
    3. Scenarios at Information & Design. A one-page introduction
    4. Create Scenarios at usability.gov. Another 1-page introduction
  5. web wireframe
    1. Paper Prototyping by Shwan Medero, A List Apart, 2007.
    2. Website wireframe (Wikipedia)
  6. Landing and home page usability and optimization
    1. HOW TO: Create a Landing Page Design Concept in 10 Minutes
    2. Top Ten Guidelines for Homepage Usability
  7. Semantic differentials
    1. Know Your Typefaces! Semantic Differential Presentation of 40 Onscreen Typefaces (case study)
    2. See Semantic differential scale for some example scales
  8. Web accessibility
    1. Accessibility in User-Centered Design (online book chapter)
  9. The web site development process
    1. The elements of user experience
    2. user experience design (honeycomb model)
    3. Process a chapter from Lynch and Horton's Web Style Guide. Read all nine sections (from the Introduction to "General Advice about Web projects".
  10. Task analysis
    1. Task analysis (short 2-page intro)

4.3 Some important wiki pages

See also and/or alternatively: The weekly programs

  1. Interaction design, user experience and usability (includes good links)
  2. Design and usability methods and techniques
  3. Guidelines-based review
  4. Usability testing
  5. Card sorting
  6. Web wireframe
  7. Landing page optimization
  8. Semantic differential scale
  9. Web accessibility
  10. Task analysis

5 Starting points for exploring more