module specification

SM7098 - Interaction Design (2022/23)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2022/23
Module title Interaction Design
Module level Masters (07)
Credit rating for module 20
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Total study hours 200
164 hours Guided independent study
36 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 30%   Project documentation folder
Coursework 40%   2000 Word Report
Coursework 30%   High-fidelity prototype
Running in 2022/23 No instances running in the year

Module summary

Interaction design is an expanding field increasingly concerned with end user requirements, user experiences and their everyday practice. Digital networks and portable devices have changed the way we work, play and interact with each other. This module provides an introduction to the theoretical and practical issues that underlie interaction design for end users of digital products. Students will be introduced to the key concepts of Human Computer Interaction (HCI), user-centred design approaches and design research methods as well as practically implementing these principles and methods. From gathering use requirements to assembling high fidelity prototypes this module will enable students to develop practical as well as analytical skills necessary for digital project development on different platforms.

Module aims

This module aims to:

  • Develop a critical understanding of key theoretical concepts in interaction and user-centred design
  • Research and explore use requirements for interactive products
  • Survey and scrutinise the conventions and constraints involved in user-centred interaction design
  • Critically evaluate interaction design stages


An indicative programme of study covers the following:

  • Theories of human-computer interaction
  • Design methods
  • User research methods
  • User-centred design methods
  • Design stakeholder and audience requirements
  • Personas and scenarios in design
  • Proto-typing techniques
  • Iterative design
  • Interface design
  • Design evaluation methods
  • Usability
  • Media platforms and distribution

Learning and teaching

This module will be delivered through a combination of modes of delivery including lectures, seminars and computer lab workshops. These sessions will consist of case studies, discussions and demonstrations of production and research techniques and their application. In addition, support to individuals and smaller groups will be provided through tutorial sessions and via email. Lecture notes, web links and appropriate continuous formative feedback tools will be made available on the VLE. Students will be encouraged to experiment and develop strategies for their assessments during the workshops in a studio atmosphere and in their self-directed study time and discuss those with tutors and peers. This allows for formative feedback opportunities to improve summative assessment tasks.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module post-graduate students will be able to:

  1. LO1 Research, develop and present in detail ideas for an interactive project
  2. LO2 Apply and evaluate the appropriate methodology and techniques used in interactive design development
  3. LO3 Develop a concept for an interactive projectinformed by a critical understanding of end user requirements and evaluation techniques

Assessment strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to test students understanding of the theories and design techniques used to develop user-centred interactive products.

A) A project development folder to provide evidence for research, planning and evaluation methods used in establishing user requirements and usability issues for an interactive project. (Weighting 30%) (LO1)
B) A 2000 word Report critically evaluating the research and design methodology used to develop an interactive project. (LO2) (Weighting 40%)
C) A high-fidelity prototype demonstrating the application of user research and design methodology and ability to design effective design communication material. (Weighting 30%) (LO3)

Students may pass on aggregate


  • Buxton, B. (2007) Sketching user experience: Getting the Design Right and the Right Design, Morgan Kaufmann
  • Cooper, A. et al. (2007) About face 3: The essentials of interaction design, John Wiley and Sons
  • Dourish, P. (2004) Where the action is: Foundations of embodied interaction, MIT Press
  • Kaptelinin, V. and Nardi, B. (2006) Acting with technology: Activity Theory and Interaction Design, MIT Press
  • Laurel, B. ed. (2003) Design Research: Methods and Perspectives. Cambridge: MIT
  • Moggridge, B. (2006) Designing interactions, MIT Press
  • Norman, D. (2002) The design of everyday things, NY: Basic Books
  • Preece, J. et. al. (2002) Interaction Design, John Wiley and Sons Ltd
  • Saffer, D. (2009) Designing for Interaction: Creating Innovative Applications and Devices 2nd edition, New Riders
  • Shneiderman, B. and Palisant, C. (2010) Designing the user interface: strategies for effective human-computer interaction 5th ed., Harlow : Pearson Education
  • Snyder, C. (2003) Paper Prototyping: The Fast and Easy Way to Design and Refine User Interfaces, Morgan Kaufman
  • Suchman, L. (2007) Human-machine reconfigurations: plans and situated actions, 2nd. Edition, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press