Course Title: Design user interfaces

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2016

Course Code: VART6060C

Course Title: Design user interfaces

School: 650T Vocational Business Education

Campus: City Campus

Program: C6102 - Advanced Diploma of Business (Public Relations)

Course Contact : Sally Parrott

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 5175

Course Contact Email:sally.parrott@rmit.edu.au


Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Nominal Hours: 50

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

None

Course Description

This unit requires the application of visual communication principles to the design of user interfaces that form part of interactive media products, such as web environments, games or e-learning resources.
 


National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUFDIG402A Design user interfaces

Element:

1. Identify project requirements

Performance Criteria:

a.Discuss concept with relevant personnel to ensure that design briefs are fully understood
b.Identify technical parameters of interactive media products, including delivery platform
c.Identify target audience and user characteristics
d.Obtain information architecture specifications if available

Element:

2. Draft design specifications

Performance Criteria:

a.Visualise concepts and develop preliminary sketches based on content architecture and audience characteristics
b.Sketch basic screen layout showing main spatial zones
c.Specify functional areas within screen layouts
d.Specify metaphors and look and feel of user interfaces
e.Develop final detailed sketches taking into consideration all ideas generated
f.Gain approval from relevant personnel to ensure that interfaces meet all requirements
g.Write user interface design specifications to include relevant advice to development teams

Element:

3. Finalise user interface designs

Performance Criteria:

a.Develop focus test plans for user interfaces to identify their strengths and weaknesses
b.Incorporate design changes to information architecture in design specifications
c.Obtain final agreement from relevant personnel for finished designs


Learning Outcomes


This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to design user interfaces for interactive media products.


Details of Learning Activities

A number of learning activities are incorporated in the in-class delivery, such as:

Individual tasks and exercises, e.g.: students have to use mindmapping software to document their brainstorms
Group work exercises, e.g.: students have to develop a concept as a response to a scenario/problem.
Online user testing
Online collaboration and conferencing
Brainstorm sessions
Probing questions


Teaching Schedule

<thead> <th scope="col">Week</th> <th scope="col">Week Commencing</th> <th scope="col">Topics</th> <th scope="col">Assessment</th> </thead>
18/2What are User Interfaces?
Induction to the course
Meet your teacher and class
 
215/2Introducing User Experience
Presentation and exercises to introduce the concept of UX (User Experience). What is it and why is it so important?
 
322/2Evaluate User Interfaces
Usability Heuristics and how to assess effectiveness, appropriateness to the user and audience and technical feasibility.
 
429/2Big Data
Analytics and Infographics
Examine the kind of data being collected. Examine how it can be used to create interesting and useful user interfaces.
 
57/3

Typography and Design Re-cap
Typography and Design in modern UI (user interfaces).
Examine student current levels and understanding with exercises.
Look at presentation techniques. Look at types of presentations, informative vs. the pitch.

 Assessment 1 submission due:
Sunday, 11pm
614/3

In class presentations

 Assessment 1 Presentation In class
721/3

Brainstorming
Look at different brainstorming techniques and idea generation.
Plan approach: design selection, graphic software choice, explore typographical and visual design elements.
Paper prototypes: concept sketches including functional areas and design specifications.
 

 
-25 March – 3 April - Mid-Semester Break--
84/4Graphics - Branding your App
Design and create a logo
Create a style guide
 
911/4Use Software to Develop Prototypes Part 1
Apply visual design and communication principles to the development of user interfaces.
Examine software tools, including tutorials on software techniques.
UX tools.
 
1018/4Use Software to Develop Prototypes Part 2
More time will be spent on giving students a chance to get accustomed with the software.
 
1125/4Applying the Software
Every pair will work on their assessment. The teacher will support.
 
122/5User Testing
Exercises to prepare for pitching to client which is very different to an informative presentation.
Students Apps should be in the final iteration stage, ready for in class feedback
 
 Assessment 2 submission due:
Sunday, 11pm
139/5In Class Presentations Assessment 2: In Class Presentations
1416/5Preparation for Test
Preparation for Assessment 3 (Test)
 
1523/5Assessment 3 - In Class Test
Individual test on Blackboard
 Assessment 3 - Due In Class


Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


References


Other Resources


Overview of Assessment

Students must demonstrate an understanding of all elements of a particular competency to be deemed competent. Assessment methods have been designed to measure achievement of each competency in a flexible manner over a range of assessment tasks.

Assessment will incorporate a variety of methods including assignments, journals, presentation and written or test. Students are advised that they are likely to be asked to personally demonstrate their assessment work to their teacher to ensure that the relevant competency standards are being met.
 


Assessment Tasks

Students are required to complete 3 tasks. All tasks must be completed successfully to be deemed competent in this unit.
 

Assessment 1 – Presentation: Examination/User Report
Individual, due: Submission on Blackboard – week 5, Sunday, 11pm, Presentation – week 6, in class

Individually, students will examine and test a real user Interface of an app. This interface will be one that helps to manage data sets (such as tram tracker or webjet). Students are then to produce a detailed analysis report to be uploaded to Blackboard and delivered in class. This presentation will cover all aspects of the user experience, that include the words that users have to interact with, the visual representations the user interacts with on the interface including, typography, diagrams, icons, and other graphics. The space with which the user or users interact, the content that changes over time such as sound, video, or animation, and the behaviour defines the user’s actions/ reaction to the interface and how they respond to it.


Assessment 2 – User Interface Design
Group, due: Submission on Blackboard – week 12, Sunday, 11pm, Presentation –Week 13, in class

Working in pairs, the second assessment will focus on the design and creation of a professional prototype of a User Interface. This project will involve a range of research and technical tasks to be completed using various software tools you will be introduced to and trained in in class. You will develop a concept for a commercially viable app and design the user interfaces for the various stages. The aim of the user interface is to make the user’s interaction as simple, efficient, enjoyable and perhaps even fun as possible. Your final prototypes will be presented in class.

Assessment 3 – Online Test
Individual (Due in class Week 15)

Individually students will complete an online test in class. You will need to show a solid understanding of key material covered over the semester including User Experience (UX), digital platforms, and prototyping software.


Assessment Matrix

Critical aspects of assessment

Evidence of the following is essential:

  • creation of user interfaces that:
    •    visually communicate to target user and audience
    •    meet required standards and technical parameters of the specified platform
  • visually communicate to target user and audience
Required knowledgeAssessment
  • Industry knowledge, including:
    • roles and responsibilities of project team members, e.g. designers, content creators, information architects, programmers and coders
    • sound understanding of the relationship between technical and creative aspects and requirements of interactive media projects
    • issues and challenges that arise in creating user interfaces
    • standards as they apply to user interfaces, including W3C Accessibility, interoperability, usability and readability

Task 2 and 3

  • visual design and communication principles, including user-centered design principles
Tasks 1, 2 and 3
  •  design elements
Tasks 1, 2 and 3
  •  typography
Tasks 1, 2 and 3
Required skillsAssessment
communication, teamwork and literacy skills sufficient to:
  • interpret and clarify written or verbal instructions
  • interpret design specifications
  • work collaboratively in a team environment - both independently on assignment and under direction
  • present a range of user interface designs to team members for discussion and feedback
  • respond constructively to feedback received from other team members
  • complete workplace documentation
  • seek expert assistance when problems arise

Tasks 1, 2 and 3
 

  • creative skills sufficient to:
    • generate feasible ideas for user interface designs that meet specifications
    • apply visual design and communication principles to produce user interface designs
Task 2
  • technical skills sufficient to:
    • proficiently use graphics software to produce user interface designs
    • create user interface designs to meet standards and platform parameters
Task 2
  • self-management and planning skills sufficient to:
    • prioritise work tasks
    • meet deadlines
Tasks 1, 2 and 3
  • manage files and directories using standard naming conventions
Task 2
 Elements/performance criteriaAssessment
 1. Identify project requirements
a. Discuss concept with relevant personnel to ensure that design briefs are fully understood
b. Identify technical parameters of interactive media products, including delivery platform
c. Identify target audience and user characteristics
d. Obtain information architecture specifications if available
Tasks 1, 2 and 3
 2. Draft design specifications
a. Visualise concepts and develop preliminary sketches based on content architecture and audience characteristics
b. Sketch basic screen layout showing main spatial zones
c. Specify functional areas within screen layouts
d. Specify metaphors and look and feel of user interfaces
e. Develop final detailed sketches taking into consideration all ideas generated
f. Gain approval from relevant personnel to ensure that interfaces meet all requirements
g. Write user interface design specifications to include relevant advice to development teams
Task 2
 3. Finalise user interface designs
a. Develop focus test plans for user interfaces to identify their strengths and weaknesses
b. Incorporate design changes to information architecture in design specifications
c. Obtain final agreement from relevant personnel for finished designs
Tasks 1 and 2

Course Overview: Access Course Overview