Geri Georg
Office: 464 CS Building
Office Hours: Mon, Wed 11:00am - 12:00pm; Tues 10-11am; and by appointment
Gururaj Mulay
Office Hours: Mon 8:00pm - 10:00pm (CSB 120); Tues 8:00pm - 10:00pm (CSB 120); Thurs 3:30pm - 5:00pm (CSB 445)
Lecture Time and Place:
2:00pm -3:15pm, Mon, Wed (extended Mon/Wed class), CSB Room 130

Course Credits

4 semester hours (3 lecture, 1 lab)

Lab hour to be arranged by teams to work on project deliverables.


Human-Computer Interaction teaches the fundamental issues that underlie the creation and evaluation of usable and useful computational artifacts. Over the term, students will learn how to design novel computational artifacts that enable a well-defined user group to achieve specific goals more effectively than via current means. More specifically, students will learn and directly apply:

This class will use active learning techniques and learner-centered instruction such as flipped classroom to provide opportunities for increased student engagement and application of critical thinking skills in the learning process. (See Felder paper for additional information.) Classroom time will often be used to allow students to inquire about current class topics, apply their knowledge by practicing skills in a group setting, and receive coaching and feedback from instructors.


CS 253 with a C or better, recommended CS 314 with a C or better.


By the end of the course, students should have the ability to:


This course is geared towards senior undergraduate students in Computer Science.

Course Overview

  1. Introduction to, and history of, HCI
    • Ability to identify the primary luminaries relevant to HCI, as well as their visions (e.g., Vannevar Bush and his Memex; Ivan Sutherland and the Sketchpad; Douglas Engelbart and his system for augmenting human intelligence, Alan Kay and the Dynabook, and Mark Weiser and Ubiquitous Computing).
    • Articulate the primary concerns of HCI practitioners: Understanding users and their needs within a sociocultural context; design; prototyping; and evaluation.
  2. Data gathering
    • Describe the human rights and ethics issues in doing work with human subjects; know how to obtain informed consent; know when institutional approval is needed for human subjects research.
    • Articulate the strengths and weaknesses of both quantitative and qualitative methods of describing humans and human activity.
    • Ability to plan and conduct semi-structured interviews using common practices of qualitative researchers.
    • Ability to plan and conduct in-situ observations.
  3. Data analysis
    • Ability to convert data collected from field studies into one or more of Contextual Design's five models (flow, sequence, artifact, cultural, physical).
    • Ability to develop and apply coding schemes to qualitative data.
    • Ability to synthesize personas from detailed qualitative data.
    • Ability to extract, and articulate, design requirements from collected data.
  4. Design and prototyping
    • Ability to differentiate between interaction design, interface design, and interface element design.
    • Ability to create both horizontal and vertical designs.
    • Ability to create low-fidelity, interactive prototypes using techniques such as paper-prototyping, storyboarding, role-playing, and video prototyping.
    • Ability to hold and participate in design critiques.
  5. Evaluation
    • Describe the differences, relative merits of quantitative vs. qualitative, naturalistic vs. experimental evaluations.
    • Ability to form and execute an evaluation plan, identifying specific measures and goals of the evaluation.
    • Ability to apply standard statistical analysis to data collected as part of the project contextual inquiry.
    • Ability to apply discount usability evaluations to interface designs and prototypes, functioning applications, including Wizard-of-Oz prototyping and heuristic evaluation.
    • Articulate elements of good experimental design.


Suggested Reference

1st ed, Contextual Design, Beyer & Holtzblatt

Course reserve material will be available online will be available through the library.

Additional References (available free online)

Grading Criteria

Activity Weight
Class Participation (iClicker Quizzes/In-Class Activities) 10%
Assignments/Canvas Quizzes 10%
Test 1 20%
Test 2 20%
Term Project 40%

See the Progress page for a detailed schedule of assignment due dates, exam dates, and project checkpoint due dates.
There is no final exam for this class.

In-Class Participation

We will regularly hold iClicker Quizess and in-class activities during class. The intent is to:

Worth 10% of the final grade.

Assignments & Canvas Quizzes

Assignments and Canvas quizzes will be posted on the Progress page. Both are individual work and submissions. Canvas quizzes will be used to test students' preparation for class and will cover readings/guides assigned in liu of a required text book. As such, their hard deadline is class time on the day they are due. NO LATE SUBMISSIONS will be accepted for these quizzes.

Worth 10% of the final grade.


Two tests will be given. Exams will have both a group task (open book) and individual work (closed book), which will be given on separate days. Students may bring one 8.5" x 11" paper containing any notes they desire to individual portion of the exam. This paper must be turned in with the exam. Both exams will be given in during normal class periods.

Each exam is worth 20% of the final grade.


See the Project Description page. This is an area where you need to start working right away.

Worth 40% of the final grade.

Late and Makeup Policy

Assignments and Project deliverables: Assignments and Project deliverables are to be submitted either through Canvas, in class, or both. Specifics are included in each assignment or project assignment page. Always check the assignment/project page for due dates. You lose 25% of the maximum possible grade for each extra day. After 2 days, you won't get any credit for the assignment unless you obtain prior permission from the instructor. Electronic submission is closed 48 hours after assignments are due; students not having submitted assignments/project deliverables receive an automatic zero on the assignment.

iClicker Quizzes, In-Class Activities, & Exams: There will be no makeup for missed iClicker quizzes or in-class activities, and students will receive a zero. If a student is unable to attend an exam due to a documented illness, accommodations will be made by the instructor according to university policy. Students missing class due to University-sponsored events must contact the instructor at least 1 week prior to the event. I will work with you regarding the missed work.

Important Dates

First day of class: Wednesday, January 17
Test 1: Week of Mar 5
Last day to withdraw: Monday March 19
Test 2: Week of Apr 23

Assignment of Final Grades

IN ORDER TO PASS THE COURSE WITH A 'C OR BETTER', YOU MUST HAVE SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETED ETHICS TRAINING(ASSIGNMENT 2). NO EXCEPTIONS! Calculation of your final class score is the average of grades for the category times the weight for the category shown in table above. The final point score will not be curved. The assignment of letter grades will be made as follows:

Letter Grade Point Range
A90% - 100%
FBelow 60%

Professional Conduct

All students are expected to conduct themselves professionally. I assume you are familiar with the policies in the student information sheet for the department. This course will adhere to the CSU Academic Integrity Policy as found in the General Catalog. At a minimum, violations will result in a grading penalty in this course and a report to the Office of Conflict Resolution and Student Conduct Services. Additionally, you are computing professionals, albeit perhaps just starting. You should be familiar with the code of conduct for the primary professional society, ACM. You can read the ACM Code of Conduct HERE.

We work to maintain an environment supportive of learning in the classroom and laboratory. Towards that end, we require that you be courteous to and respectful of your fellow participants (i.e., classmates, instructors, GTAs and any tutors). In particular, unless otherwise directed for an in-class activity: