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Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 21/07/2022 16:26:51

Title of Module: HCI & User Experience Design (UXD)

Code: COMP10066 SCQF Level: 10
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 20 ECTS: 10
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Computing, Engineering and Physical Sciences
Module Co-ordinator:Costas  Iliopoulos

Summary of Module

This module focuses on fundamental Human Computer Interaction (HCI) concepts concerned with how people interact with computer systems. Disciplines involved include ergonomics, cognitive psychology, technology, computer science, security and sociology. Developing effective interfaces for interactive systems should take into consideration the interaction with users of the system. Usability needs to be considered as well as functionality when meeting the needs of users in a specific context or environment.

The term User Experience (UX) was coined by Don Norman while he worked at Apple. User experience design (UXD or UED) is the process of enhancing user satisfaction by improving the usability, ease of use, and pleasure provided in the interaction between the user and the product. User experience design encompasses traditional human computer interaction (HCI) design, and extends it by addressing all aspects of a product or service as perceived by users. The module covers areas such as; HCI principles, usability, icons, colour in interfaces, UXD principles, visual design, psychology of cyberspace, smart devices & technologies and future developments. 

Undertaking this module will develop a range of graduate attributes. Sourcing, reviewing and presenting current literature will develop critical thinking and presentation skills. The module will discuss new developments, research, innovations, research thinking and consideration of ethical issues. Other graduate attributes such as problem solving, resilience and ambition will be promoted.

  • The purpose of the content is to stress the importance of Human Computer Interaction (HCI) and User Experience Design (UXD)in the design of interactions between humans and modern digital and smart technologies. HCI is an area of research and practice that emerged in the early 1980s, initially as a specialty area in computer science embracing cognitive science and human factors engineering. HCI has expanded rapidly since then and is now very much a multi-disciplinary field incorporating diverse concepts and approaches. HCI now aggregates a collection of semi-autonomous fields of research and practice in human-centered informatics. Topics include principles of HCI and UXD, cognition and cognitive psychology, colour, graphics, icons, user-centred design, evaluation, security aspects, and future developments.

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
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Term used to describe the traditional classroom environment where the students and the lecturer meet synchronously in the same room for the whole provision.

A mode of delivery of a module or a programme that involves online and face-to-face delivery of learning, teaching and assessment activities, student support and feedback. A programme may be considered “blended” if it includes a combination of face-to-face, online and blended modules. If an online programme has any compulsory face-to-face and campus elements it must be described as blended with clearly articulated delivery information to manage student expectations

Fully Online
Instruction that is solely delivered by web-based or internet-based technologies. This term is used to describe the previously used terms distance learning and e learning.

Online with mandatory face-to-face learning on Campus

Online with optional face-to-face learning on Campus

Work-based Learning
Learning activities where the main location for the learning experience is in the workplace.

Campus(es) for Module Delivery
The module will normally be offered on the following campuses / or by Distance/Online Learning: (Provided viable student numbers permit)
Paisley:Ayr:Dumfries:Lanarkshire:London:Distance/Online Learning:Other:
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Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1check markTerm 2


Term 3


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Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

L1. Critically examine basic human computer interaction (HCI) and User Experience (UX) theories, practices and concepts and understand the trade-offs for functionality, usability and security.

L2. Evaluate an interface in terms of appearance, usability, security, functionality and fitness for purpose.

L3. Identify suitable design methodologies and modelling techniques for human activity to follow in order to produce effective working environments within an information system.

Employability Skills and Personal Development Planning (PDP) Skills
SCQF Headings During completion of this module, there will be an opportunity to achieve core skills in:
Knowledge and Understanding (K and U) SCQF Level 10.

Knowledge and understanding of the main HCI terminology and definitions.

Critical knowledge and understanding of the main HCI principles and concepts associated with user centred interactive systems design.

Knowledge and understanding of the significance of the latest innovations, security techniques and technologies and advances likely to be influential in the future of HCI.

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 10.

Plan and undertake practical HCI evaluation.

Critical evaluation of HCI evaluation techniques.

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 10.

Analysis and application of knowledge and judgment of HCI usability principles.

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 10.

Communication through the compilation of a written report suitable for peers, management and HCI specialists. Provide justifications for arguments made in report.

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 10.

Either substantial autonomy in HCI activities or responsibility for own contribution to group activities.

Pre-requisites: Before undertaking this module the student should have undertaken the following:
Module Code:
Module Title:
Co-requisitesModule Code:
Module Title:

* Indicates that module descriptor is not published.

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Learning and Teaching
The module aims to engage students through thought provoking, stimulating and collaborative activities that inspire and challenge students to succeed. All teaching materials are available of the UWS Moodle site for the module. They aim to be accessible and provide a dynamic learning community for students with extensive use being made of the discussion forums with student contributions. The fast pace of change of smart technologies provides an ideal opportunity for students to research the latest developments. YouTube and other online tools are used extensively. Students are given as much individual choice as possible in assessments to allow them to better match their own personal interests.
Learning Activities
During completion of this module, the learning activities undertaken to achieve the module learning outcomes are stated below:
Student Learning Hours
(Normally totalling 200 hours):
(Note: Learning hours include both contact hours and hours spent on other learning activities)
Lecture/Core Content Delivery18
Tutorial/Synchronous Support Activity6
Laboratory/Practical Demonstration/Workshop24
Independent Study152
200 Hours Total

**Indicative Resources: (eg. Core text, journals, internet access)

The following materials form essential underpinning for the module content and ultimately for the learning outcomes:

Interaction Design: Beyond Human-Computer Interaction 5th edition (paperback), Rodgers Y, Sharp H, Preece J, Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Ltd May 2019 ISBN 978-1119547259

Human Computer Interaction, Alan Dix, Janet Finlay, Gregory Abowd, Russell Beale, Publisher: Prentice Hall, November 2003, ISBN: 0130461091

Smashing UX Design: Foundations for Designing Online User Experiences, Allen J, Chudley J, Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, 2012, ISBN-13: 978-0470666852

The Design of Everyday Things: Revised and Expanded Edition, Norman D, MIT Press, 2013,ISBN: 978-0262525671

The Joy of UX: User Experience and Interactive Design for Developers, Addison-Wesley Professional, 2016, ISBN: 978-0134276717

Online Teaching Materials, (either paper-based/ online Moodle). All module materials which are available in electronic format are placed on the Moodle system. These include lecture slides, tutorials, practical sessions, assessments, and a variety of additional reference materials and links to various web sites.

Suitable Wireframing/Interface Design tools e.g. educational version of Adobe XD, Axure etc. suitable for wireframing, prototyping for desktop and mobile devices.

Internet access is required to undertake practical sessions and practical coursework.

(**N.B. Although reading lists should include current publications, students are advised (particularly for material marked with an asterisk*) to wait until the start of session for confirmation of the most up-to-date material)

Engagement Requirements

In line with the Academic Engagement Procedure, Students are defined as academically engaged if they are regularly engaged with timetabled teaching sessions, course-related learning resources including those in the Library and on the relevant learning platform, and complete assessments and submit these on time. Please refer to the Academic Engagement Procedure at the following link: Academic engagement procedure

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Supplemental Information

Programme BoardComputing
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelBusiness & Applied Computing
ModeratorGerry Creechan
External ExaminerT Gaber
Accreditation DetailsNot applicable.
Version Number


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Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)
Interface Design 80%
Critical Self Reflection 20%
(N.B. (i) Assessment Outcomes Grids for the module (one for each component) can be found below which clearly demonstrate how the learning outcomes of the module will be assessed.
(ii) An indicative schedule listing approximate times within the academic calendar when assessment is likely to feature will be provided within the Student Handbook.)

Assessment Outcome Grids (Footnote A.)

Component 1
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Report of practical/ field/ clinical workcheck markcheck markcheck mark800

Component 2
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Workbook/ Laboratory notebook/ Diary/ Training log/ Learning logcheck markcheck markcheck mark200

A. Referred to within Assessment Section above
B. Identified in the Learning Outcome Section above

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  1. More than one assessment method can be used to assess individual learning outcomes.
  2. Schools are responsible for determining student contact hours. Please refer to University Policy on contact hours (extract contained within section 10 of the Module Descriptor guidance note).
    This will normally be variable across Schools, dependent on Programmes &/or Professional requirements.

Equality and Diversity
Nothing in the module should present difficulties for students on the basis of their gender, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. In relation to students with disabilities, when a student discloses a disability the individual module tutor, in consultation with the School’s Enabling Support co-ordinator, will agree any appropriate adjustments to be made. Students should note that the language of instruction is English and that they will need to have a reasonable grasp of the language in order to keep abreast of the teaching materials and in submitting assessed work.
UWS Equality and Diversity Policy
(N.B. Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any equality and diversity issues brought to the attention of the School)

2014 University of the West of Scotland

University of the West of Scotland is a Registered Scottish Charity.

Charity number SC002520.