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Week 37: Aesthetics of Interaction

with: Niklas Andersson and Linda Bresäter


The week aims to give an overview of central views and issues within aesthetics of interaction design; you will also explore in practice how aesthetics of interaction can be sketched out and prototyped rapidly
. Description


  • Overview of the history of aesthetics

  • Current state of interaction aesthetics

  • Introduction to neurocognitive psychology

  • Discussions on temporal and behavioral aspects 
of interaction design

To summarize:
After this week you should have a clear idea about what interaction aesthetics is and what to consider when designing the various aspects of it. Thus, you should be able to design an interactive object or system with a focus not only on functionality but also on aesthetics, and be able to provide a valid rationale for this design.


The course features both practical and theoretical parts, as well as work in groups (exercise A and B) and individual work (exercise C). Lectures and literature give a theoretical foundation, which is immediately put into practice in a series of small exercises. Focus is upon turning analysis and reflection into practical action. Focus is also on exchange of thoughts, feedback, designs and ideas. The course requires active participation (but no programming this week).

Week Overview


09.00 - 10.15: Introduction to the week + team formation
10.30 - 11.30: History of aesthetics and contemporary aesthetics of interaction
11.30 - 12.00: Introduction to Assignment A: 
“Animal Expression Transfer” Brief A
13.00 - 16.00: Team work on Assignment A


09.00 - 12.00: Open House at Sliperiet Invitation
13.00 - 14.30: Team work on Assignment A (Niklas available for tutoring)
14.45 - 16.00: Presentation of Assignment A


09.00 - 09.30: Introduction to Assignment B: “Designing emotions” Brief B
09.30 - 12.00: Team work on Assignment B (Niklas & Linda available for tutoring)
13.00 - 16.00: (curriculum free - Sports Day)


09.00 - 13.30: Team work on Assignment B
13.30 - 14.30: Presentation of Assignment B
14.45 - 15.30: Introduction to Neurocognitive Psychology
15.30 - 16.00: Introduction to Assignment C: “My favorite microinteraction” Brief C


09.00 - 12.00: Individual work on Assignment C
13.00 - 14.30: Individual presentation of Assignment C
14.45 - 15.45: Final seminar: “My own view on Aesthetics of Interaction”
15.45 - 16.00: Final reflections & wrap-up

Introduction to Aesthetics: Miller, E., 2001. Aesthetics Introduction. aesthetics_introduction.pdf
Design & Aesthetics: Friberg, C., 2014. Design and the Question of Aesthetics. Artifact, Vol. 3, Nr. 3, s. 1.
Aesthetics of Interaction: Lundgren, S., 2010. Teaching and Learning Aesthetics of Interaction. PhD Dissertation. Chalmers.
Gestalt Psychology:
Husserl and the Adventure of Phenomenology - In Twelve Minutes:
Dewey's Art As Experience:

Lecture slides

Introduction to the week aoi_week_intro_-_2016.pdf
History of aesthetics history_of_aesthetics
Contemporary aesthetics of interaction contemporary_aesthetics_of_interaction_-_2016.pdf
Aesthetics and emotions aoi_emotions_2016.pdf
Neurocognitive psychology & other stuff neurocognitive_psychology_2016.pdf

Expected Results of the week

Learning goals:

  • Have an overarching knowledge of the history of aesthetics in relation to industrial design and interaction design
  • Be aware of the importance and aesthetical effect of all kinds of expressions, not only visual ones
  • Be able to apply certain aesthetic values to an interface

  • Create a vocabulary to discuss and motivate design choices

  • Be trained in giving and receiving constructive feedback on design of interaction aesthetics


  • Artifacts of exercise A & B (team)
  • Artifacts of exercise C (individual)
  • Active participation during the final seminar
courses/2016_exp_prototyping_week37.txt · Last modified: 2016/09/15 07:24 by niklas