Intro to Human-Computer Interaction Design

CS147 · Winter 2014

In this course, you will learn how to design technologies that bring people joy, rather than frustration. To do this, you'll learn techniques for rapidly prototyping and evaluating multiple interface alternatives — and why rapid prototyping and comparative evaluation are essential to excellent interaction design. You'll learn how to conduct fieldwork with people to help generate design ideas. You'll learn how to make paper prototypes and low-fidelity mock-ups that are interactive — and how to use these designs to get feedback from teammates, clients, and users. You'll learn principles of visual design, perception and cognition so that you can effectively organize and present information with your interfaces. And you'll learn how to perform and analyze controlled experiments online.

Through a series of weekly assignments, you will complete a quarter-long project in teams of three. Each week, in small design studios, you present and discuss work with peers. The setting for the course is mobile web applications. The constraints of this small form factor set the stage for this challenge.

Weekly schedule
  • Lecture Mondays 2:15-3:45pm
  • Lab Wednesdays 2:15-3:45pm
  • Studio Fridays 9:30-10:45am, 11am-12:15pm, 1:15-2:30, or 2:15-3:30pm
  • Lectures in Annenberg. Studio locations vary.
    Staff and office hours
  • Prof. Michael Bernstein Wed 3:45-5:30pm (Gates 308)
  • Sanjay Kairam (Head TA) Mon 4-5pm ( Atrium)
  • Gilbert Bernstein Tue 1:00-2:00pm (Gates 398)
  • Graham Roth Thur 11:30-12:30pm ( Atrium)
  • Jon Bassen Wed 3:45pm-4:45pm (Annenberg Auditorium)
  • Julie Fortuna Mon 11am-12pm ( Atrium)
  • Jingshu Chen Thur 1:30pm-2:30pm ( Atrium)
  • Kingston Tam Wed 4:00pm-5:00pm ( Atrium)
  • Omosola Odetunde Wed 9:45-10:45am (Gates B24B)
  • Heidi Wang Tues 3:30-4:30pm (Gates 3rd Floor Couches)
  • Stephen Yang Wed 3:45pm-4:45pm (Annenberg Auditorium)
  • Will McGrath Mon 1:15-2:15pm (iRoom B23)

Michael Bernstein is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University, where he directs the Human-Computer Interaction group and is a Robert N. Noyce Family Faculty Scholar. His research in human-computer interaction focuses on the design of crowdsourcing and social computing systems. This work has received Best Paper awards and nominations at premier venues in human-computer interaction and social computing (ACM UIST, ACM CHI, ACM CSCW, AAAI ISWSM). Michael was awarded the George M. Sprowls Award for best doctoral thesis in Computer Science at MIT. He holds Ph.D. and masters degrees in Computer Science from MIT, and a B.S. in Symbolic Systems from Stanford University.


Week Lecture Lab Assignment
January 6



January 8

Source control

Due Thursday, 1/9, 11:59 pm PDT

Assignment 1: Waiting in Line

January 13



January 15


Due Thursday, 1/16, 11:59 pm PDT

Assignment 2: Needfinding

January 20

MLK Day: no class

January 22

Client-side interactivity

Due Thursday, 1/23, 11:59 pm PDT

Assignment 3: Prototyping

January 27

Heuristic evaluation


Quiz 1:
Needfinding + Prototyping

January 29


Due Thursday, 1/30, 11:59 pm PDT

Assignment 4: Heuristic evaluation

February 3

Cognition and design


February 5

Putting it together

Due Thursday, 2/6, 11:59 pm PDT

Assignment 5: Skeleton and a plan

February 10

Visual design


Quiz 2:
Heuristic Evaluation and Mental Models
Labs: Client-side interactivity, servers

February 12

Same-page Client-Server

Due Thursday, 2/13, 11:59 pm PDT

Assignment 6: Meat on the bones

February 17

Presidents' Day: no class

February 19


Due Thursday, 2/20, 11:59 pm PDT

Assignment 7: Ready for testing

February 24



February 26


Due Thursday, 2/27, 11:59 pm PDT

Assignment 8: Test your prototype

March 3

Hypothesis testing


Quiz 3:
Visual Design and Designing Experiments
Labs: Same-page client/server, Storing data, analytics

March 5

Presenting design work

Due Thursday, 3/6, 11:59 pm PDT

Assignment 9: Test your prototype online

March 10

Days of future past


March 12


Due Thursday, 3/13, 11:59 pm PDT

Assignment 10: Final presentation

Extra Credit Assignments

Final Presentation 2014

Final presentations: Friday 3/14, 4PM - 6PM