SHE Level 4
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code MHI625672
Module Leader David Moffat
School School of Computing, Engineering and Built Environment
Subject Applied Computer Games
  • A (September start)

Pre-Requisite Knowledge

Human Computer Interaction

Summary of Content

Human computer interaction (HCI) broadens out to encompass more of how users experience computing systems (UX), and how they may change the way people work. This includes the ease of use and enjoyability of the product, and affective reactions more generally, including for games and other enjoyable technologies. This advanced module builds on the earlier foundational module for HCI, to the point where students can design and conduct their own user studies for various types of applications and computing devices. The importance of creativity is increasingly recognised in the field, and thus its tractability for the design process is a research activity that will be explored, for the designer as well as the user. Wider notions of affect will also be covered, including the centrality of human emotion and personality to the user experience, for games and other entertainment devices, for social interaction platforms, but also for computing systems in the workplace generally. Current trends towards the deployment of more advanced technologies will also be covered, both in the interface, and in the intelligence of tomorrow's devices. Students should thus be better prepared to consider more career options, as they will be able to contribute to the analysis as well as design of a wide range of industrial products and services.


-360? New interfaces and their effects on users. VR applications (industry, therapy). -360 * Wearables and their uses (e.g. fitness apps). * Touchscreen devices (phones & tablets). -360? Expert evaluations: e.g. Affective CogWalk. ? Creativity for UX designers. Flow theory. ? User studies: experiment design, for labs and surveys. Statistical analyses. -360 * Sample studies, e.g. in Fitts law, for new interfaces; or soft keyboards; or games on mobile devices with touchscreen interfaces or accelerometers. -360? Affective computing: emotion in the user experience. -360 * Interaction on new social networks: roles, actors and the user experience. * Interaction and play styles in games. Sentiment analysis in text. -360 * Evolutionary roots of human motivations. Theories and models of emotion, and design of emotionally intelligent / aware systems, expressive interaction. -360? Impact of AI technologies (including machine learning) on future computing systems. -360 * Intelligent interfaces: virtual agents, language interaction (chatbot assistants). * User models in computer systems. User analytics, e.g. for games, or interfaces. -360? The changing job market for UI / UX designers.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module students should be able to:1. Evaluate interactive systems at the design stage, for usability, and to anticipate their impact on the users' cognition and affect.2. Design a computing product, or conduct a usability experiment, with emerging technologies.3. Design and conduct user studies for existing interfaces and computing systems.4. Analyse user behaviours in order to improve systems.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The University 'Strategy for Learning' documentation has informed the learning and teaching strategy for this module. The module material will be introduced through lectures, while practical exercises, based on the lecture material, will be given to students for their laboratory sessions. Students may work individually where appropriate, but will be encouraged to work in teams for the larger practical studies. There will be small exercises in the labs, and the main coursework will be a piece of research, which may be theoretical in nature, a survey, or a user study in the lab or in situ. Tutorials will be used to help explain and elaborate on both the lecture material and the laboratory practical work, and provide feedback. Full use will be made of online services including GCU Learn to provide Lecture-based and related study materials, including sample solutions, thus encouraging the development of independent learning and allowing self-reflective feedback on student performance. Staff-based feedback on student performance for submitted work will be provided in line with the University feedback policy, with summative feedback on the coursework assessment. Where appropriate, guest lecturers from relevant local industry will be invited to deliver workshops.

Indicative Reading

-360? Picard, R. (2000) Affective Computing . MIT Press. ? Preece, J, Sharp, H and Rogers, Y. (2015) Interaction Design: Beyond HumanComputer Interaction (4th edition), John Wiley ? Benyon, D. (2013) Designing Interactive Systems: A Comprehensive Guide to HCI and Interaction Design (3rd edition), Pearson. ? Carroll, J M (Ed) (2003) HCI Models, Theories, and Frameworks. Towards A Multidisplinary Science, Morgan Kaufmann. ? Lazar, J., Feng, J.H. and Hochheiser, H. (2010) Research Methods in HumanComputer Interaction, Wiley. -360? I. Scott MacKenzie (2013). Human-Computer Interaction (An Empirical Research Perspective). Morgan Kaufmann. DOI: <>

Transferrable Skills

-360? Specialist knowledge and application ? Critical analysis ? Communication skills, written, oral and listening ? Effective information retrieval and research skills ? Computer literacy ? Self confidence, self discipline & self reliance (independent working) ? Awareness of strengths and weaknesses ? Creativity, innovation & independent thinking ? Appreciating and desiring the need for continuing professional development

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Assessment (FT) 20.00
Independent Learning (FT) 120.00
Lectures (FT) 24.00
Tutorials (FT) 12.00
Practicals (FT) 24.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 1 n/a 100.00 40% Practically based Assignment