Introduction to Human-Computer Interaction for Technology Executives

Course Number: 
05-863
Cross listed as: 
08-763/45-888
Semester and Units: 
Fall Mini: 6 units
Course Description: 

Human computer interaction (HCI) is an interdisciplinary field in which computer scientists, engineers, psychologists, social scientists, and design professionals play important roles. The goal of HCI is to solve real problems in the design and use of technology, making computer-based systems easier to use and more effective for people and organizations. Ease of use and effectiveness are critical to the success of any systems that interact with people, including software systems, home, office and factory appliances, and web and phone applications.

This course provides an overview and introduction to the field of human-computer interaction, with a focus on how it applies to managers, technology executives, and others who will work with HCI professionals. Particular emphasis will be placed on what HCI methods and HCI-trained specialists can bring to design and development teams. The course will introduce students to proven tools and techniques for creating and improving user interfaces, such as Contextual Inquiry, Rapid Prototyping, Heuristic Analysis, and Think-Aloud User Testing. Students at the end of the course will have learned some useful techniques and an understanding of systematic procedures for creating usable and useful designs and systems.

Some anonymous evaluation comments from last year:

“Great course and relevant for a wide variety of people.” “This course has what it states - A proper introduction to HCI.” “This is a great course. Professor Myers was extremely helpful and provided the necessary feedback and support to make this course both informative and enjoyable.” “Homeworks were so helpful and interesting.” “I really enjoyed the course and thought it had more current real world pertinence than other classes I’ve taken in my program.” “It covers very important material that many Tepper students should know cold.” “A fantastic experience. I would recommend this course highly to students from MISM who are interested in product development and management.” “I am from ECE & whatever I expected from the course you have helped me achieve that. Now I know what goes into user interface design. After doing the assignments I have become a better designer as well as a better user of things & interfaces as well. Now whenever I look at any website or interface I intuitively start judging it and understand how much effort would have been made or not made for making that interface. Thanks for giving me the new perspective of looking at things.”


*Note: This is a required course in the Tepper School of Business, MBA Track on Technology Leadership, which is why the “for Technology Executives” is in the title, but this course is appropriate for anyone who wants a quick introduction to HCI. We want a mix of TSB, INI, MSE, HNZ, IS, MSIT, and other Masters students. Tepper students should register for course number 46-863; all others should register for either ISR course number 08-763 or HCII course number 05-863. This course is not appropriate for HCII degree students.