COMP4511 User Interface Design and Construction

Information for Session 1, 2018

Course Outline 2018 (requires valid CSE login)

Moodle Site (all resources for the course will be on Moodle)

COMP4511 is a hands-on project-based course designed to build and solidify the basic skills you acquired in COMP3511/9511. Students will be required to build their interface at least three times (remember the process is iterative!), once as a low fidelity prototype, moving to a higher fidelity electronic prototype and finishing with a beta version of the app. This semester, we will be using Swift to help us write the app. The course will provide you with a basic understanding and the building blocks required to create your app, and let you guide the design and development process.

The process doesn't start with coding, it starts with an understanding your users. You develop personas of your target audience and work through the design issues: What information are they going to be dealing with? What are the workflows? How are they going to interact with the application? What is the application going to look like?

As you learned in Human Computer Interaction, you have to conceptualise your design on paper and evaluate prototypes with users. Then you start on the design of your system, not focussing on just the code but also the object oriented design. You will build the code implementation iterating through both your object oriented design and your user interface design.

The real insights come when we usability test your application. Do your users really understand how to use your application? Does it work the way that they expect - not what you as a programmer expect. That's the challenge. What is the difference between a bug and a design flaw? Proper evaluation techniques will help you uncover both.

We teach a process that is relevant to industry. Preparing students for the real world challenges of user interface design. And face it, user interfaces are everywhere.

The process is not just about putting buttons and text on screen. COMP3511 only touched the surface of what user interface design is all about. Are you up for the challenge of designing graphical user interfaces?

COMP3511 Human Computer Interaction is a pre-requisite and you need a mark of 70 or better (you are expected to start design, prototyping and designing usability tests in the first week). You should have completed COMP2911 which introduces you to object oriented techniques, UML and design patterns, with a mark of 65 or higher.