Revised September 26, 2011

CS 449: Human Computer Interaction

Watch a video introduction to this course on YouTube.


Human-Computer Interaction teaches the fundamental issues that underlie the creation and evaluation of usable and useful computational artifacts. Over the term, students will learn how to design novel computational artifacts that enable a well-defined user group to achieve specific goals more effectively than via current means. More specifically, students will learn and directly apply:

Students will also be introduced to major threads of HCI research.


Related courses
Prerequisites: CS 240 241; Level at least 3B; Computer Science students only.
Successors: CS 349
Conflicts: SYDE 348
Calendar description
Hardware/software used: N/A.

Typical references:
Contextual Design, by Beyer and Holtzblatt
Interaction Design, by Preece, Rogers, and Sharp
Human-Computer Interaction, by Dix, Finley, Abowd and Beale
Designing the User Interface: Strategies for Effective Human-Computer Interaction, by Shneiderman and Plaisant

Required Preparation

The primary requirement for this course is experience in school, managing projects, and working. In particular, time management and communication skills (written, oral, and visual) are essential for success in this course. Thus, students with 3+ years of experience with courses at Waterloo (especially project-based courses), and experience with co-op positions, should fare well.

Learning Objectives

By the end of the course, students should have the ability to:

Typical Syllabus

1. Introduction to, and history of, HCI
Hours: 3

2. Data gathering
Hours: 6

3. Data analysis
Hours: 6

4. Design and prototyping
Hours: 9

5. Evaluation
Hours: 6

6. Topics in HCI research
Hours: 6

Campaign Waterloo

David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science
University of Waterloo
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada N2L 3G1

Tel: 519-888-4567 x33293
Fax: 519-885-1208

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