T1: Usability design - integrating user-centred systems design in the software development process

Full day tutorial for NordiCHI 2002 in Aarhus in October 2002.

Jan Gulliksen, KTH and Bengt Göransson, Enea Redina AB

In the beginning HCI grew out of computer science because of the need to address issues relating to the use of the systems but with an influence of a large number of other disciplines. In practice today, usability professionals have problems, given the limited space when it comes to times and resources, applying their knowledge in systems development projects. These are numerous reports describing these problems. Over the years a large number of methods have been developed to address the problems of usability. The problem with these methods is that they are not thoroughly integrated into the systems development process. The purpose of this tutorial is to show the audience that there is such a thing as a development process that can be focused on usability and user centred systems design throughout the system lifecycle.

Intended audience

This tutorial is intended for practitioners; software developers, HCI specialists, user representatives or project managers who want to develop and deploy a user-centred systems design process in their development organisation.

Theme and goals

The main goals for the tutorial are to:

  • supply the attendants with the means for producing a truly user-centred software development project.
  • discuss the definition and power of a quantitatively measurable view on usability.
  • introduce easy-to-apply, low-tech user-centred methods.
  • discuss their application in a lifecycle perspective.
  • define a role as usability designer in the development process.
  • relate the knowledge to a commercially available software development process, exemplified by user-centred systems design and the Rational Unified Process (RUP).

Description of activities planned

The tutorial will provide an overview of the definitions of usability and user-centred systems design. It will introduce 12 key principles for user-centred systems design usable for implementation and assessment of a user-centred development process. The tutorial will then walk through and discuss a fully user-centred development process in relation to a commercial development process, such as the Rational Unified Process (RUP). No previous experience in RUP is required.

The attendees will not only be presented information but will actively be participating in discussions and in the production of a plan for a user-centred project

Organisers' names and backgrounds

Jan Gulliksen, associate professor of Human Computer Interaction at Uppsala University. Jan is also a guest researcher at the Center for user oriented IT-design (CID) at KTH, Stockholm. Jan is a Swedish expert in ISO-standardisation within software ergonomics and human-computer dialogues and also the chairman of the IFIP working group on Methodologies for User Centred Systems Design.

Bengt Göransson is a usability designer at Enea Redina AB in Uppsala, Sweden and a PhD student in Human Computer Interaction at Uppsala University. Bengt has more than 20 years of experience in doing user centred systems design as a consultant.

The organisers are the authors of the book "Användarcentrerad systemdesign" that is in press and soon will be released in Swedish by Studentlitteratur.

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