IMT4315 - Colour in interface design


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Portfolio assessment/Home exam/Project work
Grade: Letter grades

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
Project work 4/10 A
Home exam 3/10 12 hours A
Portfolio assessment 3/10 A

Course content

-Light, colour and the human visual system -Colour mixing principles on computer systems -Colour harmony -Colour semantics -Colour and theory of signs -Affective aspects of colour -Using colour to enhance user interaction -Colour-related aspects of universal design -Use case specification and task analysis for colour

Learning outcome

The aim of this course is to provide an understanding of colour perception and its potential impact on the design of computer interfaces. The course will draw on the rich body of literature and recent research in colour, perception and design. Students will be able to apply high-level principles to their evaluation of interface design and the creation of new user interfaces, and to ensure their interface designs are consistent with universal design principles

On completion of this course, the student will be able to: -Describe features of the human visual system and colour perception applicable to interface design. -Show how the principles of user-centred design apply to the design of computer interfaces. -Describe the use of colour in semantic design. -Demonstrate principles of colour harmony. -Apply an understanding of colour perception to interface design. -Demonstrate an understanding of universal design principles in the use of colour in user interfaces, especially in relation to vision defects -Show how research in affective aspects of colour, such as emotion, can be applied to interface design.

Learning methods and activities

-Lectures/seminar(s)/workshop(s) -Lab work -Project work -E-Learning -Assignments -Portfolio creation

Additional information: -Lectures, seminars, workshops, demonstrations, laboratory work, projects and activities contributing to a portfolio of work

Compulsory requirements: -Students will be required to be physically present and participate in all seminars/workshop (campus Gjøvik) -The schedule for the course sessions will be announced before the start of the semester, and where possible support is provided for those who wish to participate remotely or to access session materials at a later time. -Students are required to complete four items of interaction design for their portfolio, and a coursework project.

Compulsory assignments

  • Workshop

Further on evaluation

Re-sit: Ordinary re-sit examination in August for the computer-based home exam. No re-sit for the other assessment parts.

Forms of assessment: -Portfolio 30% : For the portfolio a minimum of seven briefs are provided, each on a different course topic, and students select which briefs to complete. Each brief has multiple tasks, based on topics covered in class sessions. Individual and group feedback is provided. Portfolios are submitted as a single document, which is assessed by letter grade A-F. -Coursework project (40%) -Computer-based exam, 12 hours (30%) -Each of the assessments must be passed individually. Students will prepare a portfolio of four items of interaction design, annotated to show how these apply principles developed during the course.

Students will also undertake an individual project on colour in interface design and provide a written rationale, analysis and discussion of results. In the exam, students will use their own computer (or one at NTNU in Gjøvik) to undertake a specified task which applies knowledge obtained during the course.

Specific conditions

Admission to a programme of study is required:
Applied Computer Science (MACS)
Interaction Design (MIXD)

Course materials

Basic textbook: -Berns, R. (2000)Billmeyer and Saltzman¿s principles of colour technologyNY: Wiley Additional books: -Green, P. J. (1999) Understanding digital color.(2nd edition) Sewickley, PA: GATF Press -Barthes, R, (1987) trans. Lavers, A.Image, music, textNew York: Hill and Wang -Boynton, R. M. (1996) Human color vision(2nd edn) New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston. -Cage, J. (1993)Colour and culture: practice and meaning from antiquity to abstractionLondon: Thames and Hudson. -Horton, W. (1991)Illustrating computer documentationWiley -Laurel, B. (ed) (1990)The art of human-computer interface design, Addison Wesley -Rivlin et al (eds) (1990)Guidelines for screen designBlackwell Scientific Publications -Mitchell, W. (1992)Reconfigured eye: visual truth in the post-photographic eraCambridge, MA: MIT Press -Shneiderman, B. (1998)Designing the user interface(3rd edn) Reading, MA: Addison Wesley -Riley, C. A. (1995)Color and codesHanover, NH: University Press of New England -Cage, J. (1999)Colour and meaningLondon: Thames and Hudson. -Chisholm, W. and May, M. (2008) Universal Design for Web Applications: Web Applications That Reach Everyone, O'Reilly Media Minor changes may occur. Final list is presented at the beginning of the semester.

Credit reductions

Course code Reduction From To
IMT4212 5.0 AUTUMN 2017
More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  SPRING 2024

Language of instruction: English

Location: Gjøvik

Subject area(s)
  • Interaction Design
Contact information
Course coordinator:

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Computer Science


Examination arrangement: Portfolio assessment/Home exam/Project work

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Spring ORD Portfolio assessment 3/10 A





Room Building Number of candidates
Spring ORD Project work 4/10 A



Room Building Number of candidates
Spring ORD Home exam 3/10 A





Room Building Number of candidates
Summer UTS Home exam 3/10 A INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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