Designing with the Mind in Mind: The Psychological Basis for UI Design Guidelines

UI design rules and guidelines are not simple recipes. Applying them effectively requires determining rule applicability and precedence and balancing trade-offs when rules compete. By understanding the underlying psychology, designers and evaluators enhance their ability to apply design rules. This course explains that psychology.

Topics covered:

  • Perception is biased by experience, context, goals
  • Vision is optimized to perceive structure (Gestalt principles)
  • We seek and use structure
  • Color vision is limited
  • Peripheral vision is poor, and visual search is linear unless target “pops” in periphery
  • Attention is limited; Memory is imperfect
  • Limits on attention and memory shape our thought and action, e.g., change-blindness
  • Recognition is easier than recall
  • Easy: learning from experience and executing learned actions. Hard: novel actions, problem-solving, and calculation
Constellation A