Font size: A A A






Basic Information


Choice and Decision Making for HCI

Time and Place

  • Wednesday, May 9th, 2012, 9:00 - 12:30
  • CHI 2012, Austin, Texas


Anthony Jameson, DFKI, Germany

Contribution and Benefit

Find out how users of your systems make choices and decisions - and how you can help them make better ones.  

Brief Course Description

(The following description is the same as the one published on the courses page of the CHI 2012 website:)

People are constantly making small choices and larger decisions about their use of computing technology, such as:

  • “Shall I use this new application as a replacement for my current one?”
  • “Which privacy settings are best for me? Should I even take the trouble to figure them out?”
  • “Shall I make a contribution to this on-line community?”
  • “If so, which of the two available methods should I use?”

The ways in which users make these “preferential” choices can involve a wide range of processes, such as anticipation of consequences of actions, social influence, affective responses, and intuition based on prior learning. This course offers an up-to-date synthesis of relevant research in psychology, illustrated with HCI examples, that will enable you to analyze systematically the choices made by the users that you are interested in. This type of analysis will be useful in the design and interpretation of studies that involve users’ preferential choices and in the generation of strategies for helping users to make better choices.


This course was successfully introduced at CHI 2011.


  • Discuss, with reference to concrete examples, representative types of choice and decision problem faced by users of computing technology.
  • Learn how to go beyond current HCI analyses of these problems by applying concepts and results from several relevant areas of psychological research. psychological research.
  • Take away supplementary materials that expand on the discussion in the course and help you to apply its analytical framework in your own work.


HCI researchers, students, and practitioners who want to understand and support the choices and decisions of users of the systems that they design or study.


Lecture segments + familiarization with worksheets designed for later independent use.

Instructor Background

Anthony Jameson (PhD, psychology) is a principal researcher at DFKI, the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence. After having studied specific aspects of users’ choice and decision making processes in connection with user-adaptive systems, recommender systems, and multimodal systems, he recently conducted a 2-year research project to prepare the comprehensive analytical framework presented in this course. He has given numerous tutorials at CHI and other conferences and has written chapters for the Human-Computer Interaction Handbook, including a recent chapter on the topic of this course. He is founding coeditor-in-chief of the ACM Transactions on Interactive Intelligent Systems.  

Documents With More Details

Detailed Course Description

The following PDF document, which comprises 4 pages of text and 5 pages of sample materials, is an adapted and updated version of the course proposal that was submitted to the CHI 2012 course chairs in September, 2011. It includes a summary of the content of each of the eight sections of the course.

Short Introductory Paper

The following 10-page paper, which was presented in the alt.chi track at CHI 2011, gives a compact introduction to the topic of the course:

  • Jameson, A., Gabrielli, S., Kristensson, P. O., Reinecke, K., Gena, C., Cena, F., & Vernero, F. (2011). How can we support users’ preferential choice? Extended Abstracts of the 2011 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, Vancouver.

    Page with abstract and link to PDF file