Activity Theory - autumn 2017

The course introduces the students to activity theory, a leading post-cognitivist theory in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI). The main themes covered within the course include the basic concepts and principles of activity theory, applications of activity theory in HCI and related areas (including interaction design, Computer Supported Cooperative Work, and technology-enhanced learning), and the relationship between activity theory and other post-cognitivist theories. Special attention will be placed on analytical tools for design and evaluation, informed by activity theory, developments in activity-centric computing, and application of the concepts, studied within the course, in concrete research projects.

Schedule (preliminary, subject to change!)

Day Date Time Activity Room
Tue 31/10 10-12


MC323 VK
Thu 02/11 13-15 INTRODUCTION TO ACTIVITY THEORY  (Lecture/ Seminar)
Course book: ch. 3 (whole chapter), ch 4 (pp. 98-102)
Tue 07/11 10-15

METHODS (Lecture/ Seminar)

MA378 VK
Tue 14/11 10-15  

DESIGN  (Lecture/ Seminar)

MA378 VK
Tue 21/11 13-15

EMPIRICAL STUDIES (Lecture/ Seminar)

MA378 VK
Tue 05/12 13-15

Assignment 2 presentations*

MC323 VK
Wed 06/12 12-15 THEORETICAL ANALYSES (Lecture/ Seminar) MC323 VK
tba tba 13-15 Discussion/ supervision tba VK
Tue 09/01 10-15

AT & OTHER THEORIES (Lecture/ Seminar)

MA378 VK
Thu 11/01 13-15

Concluding discussion

Course evaluation

MA378 VK
17/01 10:00 Deadline for course paper submissions (in Cambro)
* obligatory attendance
VK: Victor Kaptelinin


Victor Kaptelinin, Bonnie Nardi.
Acting with Technology: Activity Theory and Interaction Design.
Cambridge, Mass: The MIT Press : 2009 : 352 p. :

ISBN-10: 0262513315
ISBN-13: 978-0262513319

In addition, a selection of journal articles and conference papers will be used in the course.  A list of papers will be provided to the students at the start of the course.


Course paper, obligatory course assignments


Victor Kaptelinin