Course Overview

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to forms of contribution several major areas of research in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI). It is based in a combination of readings and discussion, a small statistics lab, and a self-defined project. The course readings will require preparing reports on a combination of historic framing papers and more recent contributions. This will help you examine what the HCI community considers a research contribution across a variety of problems, thus preparing you to understand and make meaningful research contributions in these and other areas of HCI.

This course is explicitly not focused on the design methods commonly used in HCI practice. We do not assume a strong background in HCI (i.e., there is no undergraduate HCI prerequisite), but students seeking an introduction to effective design or the design process will be better served by CSE 440.

The course project will require hands-on experience with HCI, while remaining open to different possibilities. You might choose to design and implement a new piece of HCI technology, or you might choose to design and execute an appropriately compelling study with HCI research implications.

We will emphasize open discussion and feedback in all aspects of the course.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand and be able to differentiate forms of research contribution in HCI
  • Gain understanding of prior fundamental results that now frame areas of HCI research
  • Gain understanding of articulating new contributions in such areas of HCI research
  • Gain understanding of common HCI research methods

Course Staff

Basic Information


Email all instructors at cse510-staff [at]

Class Time & Location

Tuesdays & Thursdays, 10:00-11:20.

Conducted via Zoom, using meeting information distributed via email.

Office Hours

Via Zoom, by appointment and as scheduled for project meetings.


Course assignments consist of:

  • Readings and Reading Reports

    This is typically two readings per class, with additional details of reading assignments on the course calendar.

  • Project

    A major component of the course, the group project is defined in terms of a proposal, a pair of self-defined milestones, and a final report.

  • Statistics Lab

    Intended to help gain basic familiarity with analyzing experiments using mixed-model analyses of variance.

  • Exam

    Applying your understanding of course material to connect concepts across course readings.


The overall course grade will be computed as follows:

  • 20%: Readings and Reading Reports
  • 45%: Group Project
    • 5%: Proposal Document and Presentation
    • 5%: Milestone 1 Report and Presentation
    • 5%: Milestone 2 Report and Presentation
    • 30%: Final Report
  • 10%: Statistics Lab
  • 15%: Exam
  • 10%: Participation

Much of the grading in this course is necessarily subjective. We will attempt to communicate expectations and feedback throughout the course, but it is your responsibility to communicate with us if you would like guidance in this regard.

Project milestone grading will emphasize progress and preparation to engage with direction and feedback. Final project report grading will then consider overall execution.

Accommodations and Additional University Policies

Additional university policies apply (e.g., regarding Academic Integrity, Conduct, Disability Resources, Religious Accommodations):

Please do not hesitate to contact the course staff regarding these or any other accommodations.


This course website lives on GitHub: