ITC298 » Syllabus
Class: Usability Research Methods
Quarter: Winter 2017
Time: M/W from 1:00PM to 3:15PM in room BE3151
Class Hours: 55
Type of Course: Workforce Education Preparatory
Length of Course: 11 weeks
Prerequisite: WEB110 or instructor permission
This course gives students an overview of the different design and user research methods that are conducted throughout a web design or redesign process in order to improve designs and experiences for end users. Methods include: Competitive Analysis, Heuristic Evaluation, Card Sorting and Usability Testing.
Through lectures and assignment exercises, students will gain hands on experience conducting various research methods for a client’s website while they progress through the five phases that comprise the web design core process. Students will also learn to apply the results from their research to their web redesign projects in order to make informed design decisions and craft positive user experiences for end users.
Upon successful completion of ITC298, the student will be able to:
- Explore the different design and user research method activities that are applied in the field
- Understand and analyze the differences between each research method and the type of user data that is collected from each activity
- Learn to select appropriate research methods at a given phase within the web design process
- Apply research findings into the web design project cycle to help clients, designers and developers make decisions on the look and function of a web site or application
- Communicate effectively (orally and in writing) the terms and specifications of web design related research methods
- Use the terminology in the web industry
- Describe the types of research and critical-thinking strategies associated with each research method
- Use (appropriate) software to effectively conduct a research activity and create written and visual presentations for research findings
- Understanding Your Users, Second Edition: A Practical Guide to User Research Methods (Interactive Technologies), by Catherine Courage & Kathy Baxter
- Usability Inspection Methods by Jakob Nielsen & Robert L. Mack
Your final grade will be a culmination of your Class Assignments:
- Assignments will create an overall Class Project to be presented at the end of the quarter
- Assignments require critical thinking and problem solving skills
- Assignments will be “due” according to the class Schedule (Spring) or Schedule (Winter)*
- Students are responsible for assignment information on assignment pages
- Students are also responsible for assignment information given in class
- Assignments will be marked down 25% for every week they are late
*Students must check the schedule before asking the instructor, “When is this due?”
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Students with documented disabilities requesting class accommodations, requiring special arrangements in case of building evacuation, or have emergency medical information the instructor should know about are asked to contact the disability support services office (DSS) in Rm. 1112. Once the disability is verified with DSS you will be given a letter of accommodation that should be to handed to your instructor.