Welcome to HCI 2023!

This blog contains all the information about the course „Human-Computer Interaction“ in the summer semester of 2023. We will update the content continuously.

  • Instructor: Claudia Müller-Birn
  • Office hours: Mondays 3:00 – 4:30 PM
  • Email: clmb@inf.fu-berlin.de
  • Lecture: Tuesdays 10 AM -12 AP
  • Exercise: Tuesdays 2:00 – 4:00 PM

Course Description

In both the business and personal environments, the question is no longer whether to use software, but which software to choose. In such decision processes, the usability of the software is often not an explicit requirement but implicitly has a high influence on the selection decision. Excellent usability and positive user experience can only be achieved by knowing and understanding the user’s goals, hidden needs, and cognitive abilities. In computer science, we address these challenges in the research area of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI): Besides the choice of the „right“ technology, the consideration of the users and their needs is fundamental for the later success of the service or product. However, usability is neither an inherent property of software nor can usability as a software feature be developed separately at a certain point in time. Usability always exists in a specific usage context, and this context must be clearly understood. Furthermore, in order to improve usability, it is necessary to adapt the entire software development process. The goal should be to ensure that the software, despite its complex functionality and wealth of information, is suitable for use by the target group. Depending on the development phase and the project situation, we can select and apply different principles and methods in our development process to achieve this goal. In the Human-Computer Interaction I course, you will learn and apply these principles and methods to create a positive user experience.


Shneiderman, Ben, et al. „Designing the user interface: strategies for effective human-computer interaction“. Pearson, 2016.

Dix A, Finlay J, Abowd GD, Beale R „Human-Computer Interaction“. Pearson Prentice Hall 2004.

Sharp, Helen, Yvonne Rogers, and Jenny Preece. „Interaction design: beyond human-computer interaction.“ 2007.

Target Group

This course is part of the bachelor and master program of computer science, but the level is designed for bachelor students. We expect students to be in the 5th semester of the bachelor program (not earlier) or any time in the master program.


There are no prerequisites for this course, except that you are open and motivated to learn about a human-centered development practice. You are expected to conduct interviews with strangers and to work in groups with other students. Being familiar with (web) programming is beneficial.

It is advisable to have attended the course Software Engineering (Vorlesung Softwaretechnik) and to have completed one software project.

Learning Objectives

You will learn how to:

  • Apply human-centered design methods in your development practice.
  • Study humans and collect data on their activities.
  • Summarize data into conceptual models that help you to derive requirements.
  • Conceptualize, design, and prototype graphical user interfaces based on requirements.
  • Evaluate your (low and high-fidelity) prototypes in studies.