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Interaction Design

From on-line banking systems on our phones, to the full body game controllers we use at home and the RFID based livestock tagging systems used in farmyards, interactive systems are very much part of everyday life. But how many are easy, satisfying and enjoyable to use? This course introduces you to the factors, techniques, tools and theories that will help you design usable systems.


This course normally runs twice a year.

Course dates

18th November 2024Oxford University Department of Computer Science - Held in the Department08 places remaining.
17th March 2025Oxford University Department of Computer Science - Held in the Department10 places remaining.


After studying the course you will be able to:

  • explain why it is important to design interactive systems taking account of the user and context of use
  • describe and use different techniques for characterizing potential users and contexts in the design of interactive systems
  • define a suitable programme of user involvement that treats users ethically and fairly
  • design and develop a suitable prototype for an interactive system
  • plan and execute the evaluation of an interactive system, focusing on aspects of usability and user experience
  • discuss accessibility and cultural issues for the design of interactive systems
  • explain how user experience concerns fit within the wider software development process


The course will be based around the book Interaction Design (2011) by Rogers, Sharp and Preece, published by Wiley (see, extended with case studies and opportunities for working with systems and products you are familiar with, and other practical sessions.  The topics covered by this module include:


  • Techniques for examining the user experience and exploring the context of use
  • Usability and user experience goals
  • Interaction Design in and for different countries
  • Capturing and representing user characteristics and user journeys
  • Designing accessible interactive systems
  • The process of interaction design
  • Prototyping
  • Approaches to Evaluation
  • How UX design fits within the software development life cycles including agile approaches
  • Different interface types: mobile, multimodal, shareable, brain-computer, tangible
  • Cognition
  • Social Interaction