Please note! Course description is confirmed for two academic years, which means that in general, e.g. Learning outcomes, assessment methods and key content stays unchanged. However, via course syllabus, it is possible to specify or change the course execution in each realization of the course, such as how the contact sessions are organized, assessment methods weighted or materials used.


On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

- Identify key basic principles of human cognition and perception and apply them to the design of interactive systems. Explain the fundamentals of how human and interactive systems co-operate.

- Deconstruct a design brief and user insights into user's goals and scenarios of use. Carry out assessments, like Hierarchical Task Analysis to enable iterative design development.

- Construct an interaction design prototype with a suitable fidelity level for the project objectives and the key scenarios. Critically assess, and apply, potential interaction design patterns.

- Identify different evaluation methods (e.g., usability testing, experiments, field studies, heuristics) and explain their main advantages and disadvantages.

- Carry out an assessment of a prototype, interaction design or complete system, by selecting between different evaluation methods.

- Judge how to systematically assess the overall experience of an interaction design, and design an evaluation accordingly.


Credits: 8

Schedule: 11.01.2021 - 19.02.2021

Teacher in charge (valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022): Andres Lucero Vera, Antti Salovaara

Teacher in charge (applies in this implementation): Andres Lucero Vera, Antti Salovaara

Contact information for the course (valid 22.12.2020-21.12.2112):,

CEFR level (applies in this implementation):

Language of instruction and studies (valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022):

Teaching language: English

Languages of study attainment: English


  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    This course aims to increase students knowledge on the following topics:

    • Interaction design: Defining the behavior of interactive systems principles, patterns and processes.
    • Basic principles in some closely related fields e.g. information visualization, human cognition and perception as they relate to interaction design.
    • Interaction design process in contemporary software development processes and models, e.g. Agile
    • Practical methods and tools for students to grow to a role of interaction designer or UX designer in industry, working efficiently together with developers.

Assessment Methods and Criteria
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    The student should show in-depth understanding of interaction design both in theory and practice.

    The course includes a group project that has weekly deliverables. The grade is defined based on the developed solutions in the deliverables, reading assignments, individual assignments, and active participation during the course. The lectures and other contact teaching will have a minimum attendance of 80%.

  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    216 hours (8 credits), Full time work during the period.

    Contact hours: 60h (Lectures, Homework discussions, Studio work tutoring sessions, Presentations)

    Individual and group work hours: 112h (self-study, literature exercises, contextual studies, design, team meetings, evaluation, presentation preparations, reporting)

    Giving feedback on the course: 1h

    Personal reflection: 43h (20%)


Study Material
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    Will be distributed at the course.

  • Applies in this implementation:

    The course materials first consist of slides prepared for each lecture, which are shared with students by the end of the corresponding day. Materials also consist of different artifacts created and used by the teachers in their (industrial) research work (e.g., consent forms, cultural probes, paper prototypes).

    In addition, reading materials consist of the ‘Interaction Design: Beyond Human-Computer Interaction’ book by Preece, J., Rogers, Y., & Sharp, H. (2015). In addition, further reading materials that are available to students online through the Aalto library are included at the end of each lecture in the slides.

Substitutes for Courses
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    MUO-E3020 Designing interactions

    MUO-E3034 Evaluating interactions

  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    User Inspired Design course or equal knowledge.

    Equal knowledge refers either to minimum of 10 ects of prior studies in human centred design, co-design or corresponding topics.

SDG: Sustainable Development Goals

    4 Quality Education

    5 Gender Equality

    8 Decent Work and Economic Growth

    9 Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure

    10 Reduced Inequality