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《Interactive System Design》Course Syllabus
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Interactive System Design》Course Syllabus

Course Name

Interactive System Design


Dr. Zhao Huang

Course Type

Elective Course

Prerequisite Courses


Computer Science

Learning Method

Mentoring, Discussion and Group   projects


1st semester






1. Objective & Requirement

Interacting with computer technology has become an essential part of everyday life. Computer-based interactive systems provide support to an ever widening range of human activities, some as simple as checking one’s bank balance, others as complex as flying a passenger aircraft. It is becoming increasingly important that these systems should be usable, reliable and cost-effective, and this means ensuring that they are well designed.

A major objective of this course is to provide students with a framework that can link together all aspects of designing computer-based systems for human use. In other words, we are offering a means of integrating methods specific to interactive systemswith methods of a more general nature such as systems analysis and requirements definition-methods normally treated as a part of software engineering. We do this to make sure that the sets of methods are not treated each in isolation, but are collectively given the attention they deserve.The course will be teaching in full English, all graduate students, including thesis-based and PhD students whose discipline are related to computer science are welcome to select this course.

2. Topics to be covered

We will cover the following core topics plus a set of selected topics:

(i) The Human Virtual Machine (Types of Theory Useful in System Design, Psychological Models of Human Information Processing, Sociological and Anthropological Theories of Human Behaviors, Theories of the Organization of Human Activity, Sociological Theory of Group Organization).

(ii) Design Processes and Representations (Modelling the User's Activity, Developing the Specification, Analyzing the Design, Empirical Evaluation).

(iii) Systems Analysis and Design (Approaches to Modelling the User's Activities, Methods Based on Task Models, Systems Analysis Methods, Software Systems Analysis, User-Participative Methods).

(iv) Requirements Definition (Defining Requirements, Defining Requirements for Interactive Systems, Validating Requirements, Requirements and Innovation, Verification Against Performance Requirements).

(v)Usability Analysis and Inspection (Analysis As a Two-Stage Process, Analysis Techniques Based on the Goms Model, Analysis by Cognitive Walkthrough, Heuristic Evaluation).

3. Textbook

Interactive System Design, M. Lamming, W. Newman, 1995

4. Reference Books

5. Course Evaluation (Tentative)

Assignments                           30%

Course Project                        40%

Midterm Exam (in-class)          30%