Explore new perspectives on human experience and develop your own UX testing protocol

Module details

  • Offered to 2nd Years
  • Mondays 16.00-18.00
  • Planned delivery: Online with in-person activities
  • 2-term module worth 5 ECTS
  • Available to eligible students as part of I-Explore
  • Extra Credit, or Degree Credit where your department allows
Degree credit module options by departmentHow to enrol

Solving global issues, achieving complex change in the world and influencing consumer behaviour are complex issues that require some understanding of human nature and human experience. Using that understanding will greatly improve the chances of any innovation or solution succeeding. This advanced module offers you the opportunity to consider what is involved in user experience (UX) testing - developing your own approach that integrates an interdisciplinary approach to understanding experience with qualitative methodologies. After completing a mini-UX testing project we will reflect on the importance of this process in order to innovate new products, influence behaviour or create lasting change in the world.

There are no lectures in this module. You will complete lots of active learning activities to help explore key issues and themes. We will work collaboratively in teams and as a whole class to develop our understanding of human experience and consider how we can apply this to help develop our own UX testing protocol.

This module will be delivered with a mixture of on campus sessions and online drop in and review sessions. This will allow us to spend time together and enjoy working in person, but will also give us some flexibility to join sessions remotely as needed. We will therefore be developing specific skills to support both in person and online working. All sessions will be fully interactive and will include individual and team work and lots of interaction with the lecturer. We will make full use of our virtual classroom throughout, which will be our main point of contact and collaboration. See the Change Makers handbook for more information about our virtual classroom on Basecamp.

Elizabeth Hauke talks about Change Makers Horizons module Interdisciplinary Approaches to User Experience.

Interdisciplinary Approaches to User Experience

Explore new perspectives on human experience and develop your own UX testing protocol

Published on May 9, 2023

Listen to Dr Elizabeth Hauke talking about the Interdisciplinary Approaches to User Experience module

Information blocks

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module you will be able to:

  • Understand and reflect on the nature of experience using a range of theoretical ideas
  • Describe and illustrate diagramatically your own understanding of how experience is constructed
  • Use basic qualitative methods including questionnaires/surveys, interviews, focus groups and observational methods to answer a research question
  • Apply your understanding of experience and of qualitative research methodology to develop your own approach to UX testing
  • Deploy and reflect on your approach in a real world mini-project
  • Work independently and as part of a team

Indicative core content

During this module, you will begin by considering the nature of experience. In teams we will consider the inputs of various disciplinary theories to our overarching idea of 'experience'. You will have the opportunity to design your own 'experience' infographic that details how these ideas can be brought together. We will explore the nature of qualitative research and how this might be used to investigate human experience, and relate this to the practice of UX testing. We will learn how to conduct a range of research methods - practicing them on a whole class research activity so that we have the opportunity to try all the methods. Finally you will design and conduct your own UX testing mini-project.

Learning and teaching approach

During this module you will be guided by the teacher to discuss your own ideas about 'experience' and be introduced to some different theoretical ideas relating to perception and meaning-making. We will conduct some basic thought experiments and practical activities to see how 'experience' operates as a mediation between the 'real world' and our internal image of the world. We will relate this to various models of UX testing, focussing on the contribution of qualitative methodology. You will develop individual approaches to UX testing for a real world mini-project that we will carry out together. The classes will be interactive and will involve a combination of whole class and small group discussion and working, along with some opportunities to develop your ideas individually.


Formative learning activities will be completed in the first part of the module, for which you will receive feedback. These include creating the experience infographic and testing each of the research methods in our research carousel activity. There are two summative assessment tasks. The first is to complete your Structured Research Report. This is a questionnaire that will ask you questions about your own approach to UX testing, and details of the mini-project. You will also produce a multimedia research output that communicates a key finding from your research into user experience. This will be the equivalent of a maximum of 1000 words or 10 minutes in length, but will vary depending on the nature of the output.

  • Coursework: Structured Research Report - Maximum 1000 words of short answers to structured questions (60%)
  • Coursework: Multimedia Research Output - Equivalent to 1000 word essay or ten minute performance, video or audio submission (40%)

Key information

  • Requirements: You are expected to attend all classes and undertake approximately 85 hours of independent study in total during the module. Independent study includes reading and preparation for classes, researching and writing coursework assignments and preparing for other assessments.
  • This module is designed as an undergraduate Level 5 module. For an explanation of levels, view the Imperial Horizons Level Descriptors page.‌

What happens in this module?

We will learn about different philosophical and theoretical ways to understand the nature of human experience. We will be thinking about how we use our senses to understand the world, and then how we give meaning to things that happen. We will also think about how we undertake different types of task and how we behave in different scenarios. We will link this to the idea of user experience (UX).

We will explore different qualitative research methods that might help us explore human experience, and consider how these might be deployed along with the principles of UX testing to develop our own UX protocol. You will develop a mini-research project to test your protocol.

During this module you will learn:

  • About existing theories and ideas
  • How to combine these theories with your own thoughts and ideas
  • How to relate complex theories and ideas to your own experiences
  • How to work in teams and learn together with other students
  • How to manage your own time
  • How to learn effectively on campus and online – how to build relationships with other students and your teacher, how to engage in online spaces and how to communicate and collaborate effectively
  • How to develop your own UX testing protocol

 During this module you will do:

  • Lots of practical and paper-based activities to help build your own knowledge and understanding of complex ideas
  • Lots of individual thinking, reading and online research
  • Lots of collaborative thinking and team activities
  • Trust and relationship building activities
  • Lots of speaking and sharing in class, in a very supported and friendly environment
  • Informal peer feedback