Designing Interactive Systems

Lecture Description

Computers have evolved from batch processors towards highly interactive systems. This offers new possibilities but also challenges for the successful design of the interaction between human and computer.  Interactive system are socio-technical systems in which users perform tasks by interacting with technology in a specific context in order to achieve specified goals and outcomes.

The aim of this course is to introduce advanced concepts and theories, interaction technologies as well as current practice of contemporary interactive systems. The course is complemented with a design capstone project, where students in a team select and apply design methods & techniques in order to create an interactive prototype.

Lecture Objectives

  • Understand what interactive systems are and how they can be conceptualized
  • Explore theoretical foundations that guide the design of interactive systems (e.g., theories from reference disciplines such as psychology or human-human communication)
  • Know key concepts and design principles of specific classes of interactive systems (e.g. CSCW, Conversational Agents and Adaptive Systems)
  • Get hands-on experience by applying lecture content in a design capstone project.

Registration & Organization

Please note: This course is limited to a capacity of 50 places. The capacity limitation is due to the attractive format of the accompanying capstone project. Students have to apply with their CV and transcript of records via Yousubscribe after the kickoff session. The capstone project is a group assignment, students are allocated to different use cases mostly based on their preferences. The language of instruction is English. Further organizational details of the lecture and the capstone project will be presented in the kick-off session of the lecture. More information (e.g. schedule for lecture and exercises) will be available via the ILIAS course of this lecture.

Zoom-Links for all live sessions, including the kickoff, will be posted in advance in the ILIAS course of the lecture.


  • Benyon, D. (2014). Designing interactive systems: A comprehensive guide to HCI, UX and interaction design (3. ed.). Harlow: Pearson.
  • Dix, A., Dix, A. J., Finlay, J., Abowd, G. D., & Beale, R. (2003). Human-computer interaction. Pearson Education.

Further literature will be made available in the lecture.