usability, design, interaction design, information, web usability, user interface design, usability engineering,user testing, usability inspection, heuristic evaluation, webdesign, UI, GUI, HCI, user-centered design,human-computer interaction, mensch computer interaktion,universität konstanz, usability test, benutzerfreundlichkeit, mensch-maschine-interaktion, mensch-computer-interaktion, human-computer-interaction, usable, website usability, ergonomie, ergonomisch, psychologie, gestalt principles, scenario, information visualization,informationsvisualisierung, User Interface Evaluation, Usability testing, Human Factors, Erogonomic, Ergonomics, User Interfaces, User Interface, Interfaces, informations visualisierung, visual information seeking system, visual search interface, Mensch & Computer 2012Harald Reiterer


Experiments in Human Computer Interaction (Directed Studies)


Harald Reiterer


Ulrike Pfeil






Mo 20.06. 9:00 - 13:30, Fr 08.07. 9:00 - 18:00, Fr 15.07. 9:00 - 13:30


ONLY PhD Students

Mo 20.06. 9:00 - 13:30
Fr 08.07. 9:00 - 18:00
Fr 15.07. 9:00 - 13:30

“Experiments in HCI” is a seminar designed for doctoral students to guide them in conducting experimental user studies as part of their doctoral thesis. In sum, the seminar covers the whys and hows of conducting good experiments in HCI. Students will learn how to build on existing work in formulating their research questions and devising hypotheses. In addition, the seminar addresses how to select the right measures that provide evidence for conclusions. Also, students learn how to narrate findings and deal with alternative explanations for results. Based on a carefully selected reading list comprised of theoretical information about experiment, best-practice material, and good examples, doctoral students present their own experiments and get detailed feedback on it. Additionally, a theoretical part will summarize the lessons learned.
The seminar consists of three presence dates:

  • Session 1 (half day): Introduction, Provision of reading plan, Selection of study
  • Session 2 (full day): Presentation of Study and Feedback
  • Session 3 (half day): Theoretical part – Take-home messages

Session 1 (half day):
  1. Lecture: Introduction - Why do we need experiments?
  2. Provide reading list consisting of
    1. Theoretical information about experiments (planning experiments, conducting experiments, analyzing data, pitfalls to avoid)
    2. Examples of good experiments
    3. Collection of useful material (standardized questionnaires, examples for informed consent, application for ethical approval etc.)
  3. Select an experiment (ideally, doctoral students bring their own ideas for experiments as part of their thesis – if not, we will provide examples that they can choose from)

Session 2 (full day):
  1. Students’ presentation of planned experiment
  2. Discussion and feedback to student (as we will have a short written summary about their user study beforehand, we can prepare additional reading material)
  3. Identification of ‘hot topics’ to be covered in session 3

Session 3 (half day):
Lecture based on the identified ‘hot topics’ and heuristics of doing good experiments. This includes but is not limited to:
  1. Finding research questions and formulating useful hypotheses
  2. Designing experiments
  3. Conducting experiments
  4. Reporting experiments

Apart from the theoretical background, identified ‘hot topics’ based on students’ experiments will be taken up and integrated into the lecture. We conclude with a summary of the lessons’ learned.


ONLY PhD Students




This seminar is offered for doctoral students conducting research in human-computer interaction.