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30th Annual Human-Computer Interaction Lab Symposium

Tutorials / Workshops - May 22-23, 2013





T2: Introduction to Usability Testing
May 22, 1:00pm-5pm
Bill Killam
Contact: Bill Killam for more information

This is an introductory tutorial on the topic of usability testing. This tutorial is intended for usability practitioners looking to expand their skills, other practitioners (designers, developers, testers, etc.) who may have usability testing interests or responsibilities, and management staff that may be considering incorporating usability into their organization. In the tutorial we will cover both management issues and practical issues of usability testing and discuss what usability testing is (and isn't).

In the module on management issues, we will focus on usability as it related to the organization. We will discuss what makes a product usable, the origins of usability testing, and the relationship of usability testing to the broader areas of Human Factors Engineering and other disciplines (e.g., marketing, design, development, and other types of testing). We will discuss product development models that incorporate usability and discuss such topics as the timing of usability testing in the design and development cycle, how to plan for them, and what ROI there is for usability testing.

In the practical module, we will focus the mechanics doing usability testing. We will discuss the different types of testing (formative versus summative) as well as different protocols that can be used for usability tests (both user-based and non-user-based). We will discuss how to develop a test including the test tasks, test length, participant selection and recruiting, data collection, and analysis. We will discuss ethical issues associated with conducting tests with human subjects. We will discuss what empirical data can be derived from usability testing and what cannot. Finally, we will practice the skills and principles involved in facilitating a user-based test.


T3: Interfaces from the Top down and Ground up: How theory and experiment inform design
May 23, 10:30am-3:30pm
Contact: Tim Clausner for more information

Human computer interface research aims to improve information displays and control devices. The purpose of a display is for people to comprehend its meaning, for a visualization to make sense, for a manual gesture to yield an expected outcome. Achieving enhanced interfaces is a research problem situated in the intersection of computer science, psychology, linguistics, and physics (at least). This tutorial will explore the role of theory and experiment as they apply to problems of interface design, performance measurement, and interpretation of results. Carefully designed experiments can tell us more than whether one interface is better than another. Experiments can tell us about perceptual, cognitive, and neural processes which enable people to make sense of interfaces. We will consider two design approaches. Top down approaches begin with an extant design and aim to enhance it. Ground up approaches aim to design an interface from first principles. These approaches can yield practical improvements in interface design and performance, as well as yield contributions to theory.


W1: Moving from Big Data to (Learning) Analytics: Understanding data analysis of large-scale online learning communities *FULL*
May 22, 1:00pm-5pm
Brian Butler, June Ahn
Contact: June Ahn for more information.

Online learning has become a major development over the past year with open education resources (OERs) and Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs). With the proliferation of online communities that support learning, there are increasing opportunities to leverage the data created in these platforms to conduct analytics of how people collaborate and learn. In this workshop, we will discuss these opportunities in "learning analytics" from such big data sources. Workshop participants will get a chance to "get their hands dirty" and analyze data from one of the foremost open education platforms, the Peer 2 Peer University. We hope that participants will gain experience and understanding in moving from raw data collections to usable data analysis for education-related research.


W2: Human-Game Interaction: HCI and video games
May 22, 1-5pm
Greg Walsh, Kent Norman
Contact: Kent Norman for more information

The workshop would focus on the HCI/gaming principles that make playing Final Fantasy, Assassin's Creed, and even Angry Birds more fun than working with Windows, Google Docs, and even iTunes. What is that business and personal software lacks and what is it that is added by the gaming industry that gets people to pay good money for games that are hard to play, often frustrating, unproductive, and yet addictive? What can these two very different lines of digital development learn from each other?


W3: Exploring Temporal Patterns in Electronic Health Records *FULL*
May 23, 10:30-5pm
Ben Shneiderman, Catherine Plaisant
Contact: Catherine Plaisant or visit the workshop webpage for more information.

Electronic Health Record (EHR) databases contain millions of patient records including events such as diagnoses, test results or medication prescriptions. The use of EHR databases could be dramatically improved if easy-to-use interfaces allowed clinical researchers and quality improvement analysts to explore complex temporal patterns in order to build and test hypotheses regarding the benefits, risks, comparative effectiveness, and appropriateness of treatments or medication regimens. Novel strategies in interface design and information visualization are needed.


W4: Citizen Science: Where practice meets research
May 23, 10:30am-4pm
Jenny Preece, David Jacobs, Jen Hammock
Contact: Carol Boston for more information

Citizen science, or public participation in scientific research, engages volunteers in contributing to scientific understanding by undertaking such tasks as making observations, collecting field data, and performing data analysis. Many well-known projects--from the Audubon Society’s annual Christmas Bird Count to the Encyclopedia of Life’s efforts to bring together information and pictures about every species known to humankind—seek to expand knowledge of biodiversity through public participation. What can citizens, scientists, and researchers learn from each other? This highly interactive workshop will bring together practitioners and researchers to explore technology, methods, and research issues associated with biodiversity-related citizen science projects. Participants will be invited to collaborate in creating an agenda based on their biggest challenges and key questions. Some possibilities are: How can technology support (or inhibit) individual contributions? Will incorporating gaming features in technology encourage volunteer participation? What are best practices in volunteer recruitment, engagement, and retention? How can scientists and volunteers interact most productively? Come ready to share practical tips and ideas with project leaders and participants, get updates from University of Maryland researchers and collaborators from the Smithsonian’s Encyclopedia of Life (EOL) project and Citizen Science Task Force, U.S. Geological Survey, Project BudBurst, and more, and help contribute to an ongoing citizen science research agenda rooted in field experience.

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