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Current Course Offerings

Summer 2020

Summer I

English 5314.501

Writing Software Documentation



Instructor: Pinfan Zhu

Description: Numerous software applications and programs are created every year. Our daily life and workplace life are inseparable from using these software tools for different purposes.Thus, writing software documentation becomes one of the important skills a technical writer must command in his/her professional career. English 5314 is just such a course that develops students’ expertise in the management and production of writing for both print and online media that supports the efficient and effective use of software in its intended environment. Major genres include software and hardware manuals such as tutorials, procedures, and reference. Students will also learn how to manage projects, how to address issues of user analysis, text design, page design, task-oriented manuals, and translation management. The class is basically discussion-based, but we do have other class activities such as exercises, group critique, team project on usability test. Since the class is mainly online, you have to use my teaching website, TRACS, Adobe Connect for class meetings and other reference websites. Most activities will be conducted online, so students need to learn how to use some online tools for their assignments or presentations. Details will be found in the syllabus. We meet every Tuesday and Thursday from 5:30 to 9:50 pm for a summer session, and you mainly complete assignments, projects, and exercises on Thursday evenings.



• 10% Exercises

• 20% Chapter quizzes

• 30% 3 short projects: tutorials, procedures and references.

• 10% Usability design and implementation report

• 30% Proposal for your semester project and the Semester project

Office: FH M18

Phone: (512) 245- 3013


Summer II

English 5314.751

 UX and Usability Research



Instructor: Dr. Aimee Roundtree

Description/Goals: This course explains how to plan, conduct, and analyze usability and UX research to understand the way users interact with different products, in order to improve the products. It situates both within the field of audience analysis, and it covers the principles and methods of this form of applied research. The course covers concepts of UX and usability research in the context of relevant literature, as well as best and new practices in the field. The course also offers hands-on learning experiences with the UX and Usability Research Laboratory. The course requires planning, designing, and conducting usability and UX research, then analyzing data and reporting the findings.

Books: (Possible)

Observing the User Experience: A Practitioner's Guide to User Research, Second Edition.

Measuring the User Experience: Collecting, Analyzing, and Presenting Usability Metrics, Second Edition.

• Quantifying the user experience: practical statistics for user research

• UX Research: Practical Techniques for Designing Better Products

• Research Methods in Human-Computer Interaction

Evaluation: User Tests, Report, White Paper or Book Review, Presentations, Reading Responses

Office: FH 313

Phone: (512) 245-2317