ERIC Number: ED337203
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Oct
Reference Count: N/A
Psychological Dimensions of User-Computer Interfaces. ERIC Digest.
This digest highlights several psychological dimensions of user-computer interfaces. First, the psychological theory behind interface design and the field of human-computer interaction (HCI) are discussed. Two psychological models, the information processing model of cognition and the mental model--both of which contribute to interface design--are introduced and discussed. It is observed that the use of metaphors to link user knowledge to the system's function can be both effective and constraining. Seven basic principles for interface design are then identified. It is argued that the most fundamental of these principles is that the interface should be designed around the user's needs rather than added on after a system has been completed, thus serving the constraints imposed by the system. Arguing that interfaces will become increasingly interactive as new input and output (I/O) devices are developed, the digest concludes by identifying current trends in interface design. Examples of new I/O devices currently being researched in HCI laboratories are given, and it is noted that interfaces are increasingly able to support multiple I/O devices in parallel (e.g., interfaces which will accept both voice and gesture), and that research is currently advancing in the area of interaction styles. (MAB)
Descriptors: Cognitive Psychology, Computer Software Development, Computer System Design, Gateway Systems, Human Factors Engineering, Information Processing, Input Output Devices, Learning Processes, Man Machine Systems, User Needs (Information)
ERIC Clearinghouse on Information Resources, 030 Huntington Hall, Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY 13244-2340 (free while supply lasts).
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Information Resources, Syracuse, NY.
Identifiers: ERIC Digests