Suggested topic: Measuring Trust

Trust is an essential pre-requisite and quality of human-computer interaction (HCI), involved in a variety of domains including banking, commerce, communication, identification and authentication, and many more. Despite the importance of trust in HCI, we found existing trust scales to be difficult to use in practical HCI research: they consist of lengthy questionnaires that take a long time to fill and place a significant burden on respondents. Shorter scales or alternative measuring methods are needed.

For this research topic, we suggest that students can investigate the state-of-the-art in the measurement of trust, including the pros and cons of existing trust scales, with regard to practical application in HCI research. Methodologically, this can be achieved by conducting a systematic literature review. The review should follow guidelines such as the PRISMA workflow [1]. For this topic, a primarily qualitative review is likely most suited, but quantitative analysis may also be included to some extent.

Workflow for conducting a systematic literature analysis. Methodologically, a systematic literature review should carefully plan and document the identification, screening, and eligibility decisions made while searching and reading literature, as well as how eligible papers were analyzed and how conclusions were drawn. Figure based on the PRISMA workflow diagram [1].

As a benefit for students interested in this topic, the suggested research provides an opportunity for learning and practicing systematic review methods – an essential skill for describing the state-of-the-art in any scientific undertaking. Students who wish to work in this area as part of their bachelor thesis, please apply via email to deco-teaching@inso.tuwien.ac.at with a short statement about your background and interest related to this research topic.

References:
[1] PRISMA Statement and PRISMA Flow Diagram. http://prisma-statement.org/PRISMAStatement/FlowDiagram.aspx, last retrieved Oct 9th, 2019.

Suggested Topic: Design & Evaluation of a Web-based Interactive Visualization Tool

This applied topic will provide you the opportunity to work on the design and usability evaluation of a web-based online visualization tool. The tool in question is an interactive visualization of indicators on knowledge co‐creation in the European research area. Your task will be to assess the usability of the tool in its current state and to create design solutions for the improvement and extension of the tool.

This applied topic is suitable for project based courses (PR), such as “From Design to Software” or “Projekt aus Media and Human Centered Computing”.

Recommended prior knowledge: Interaction design, web usability, web front-end technologies (HTML, CSS, Javascript)

Students who wish to work in this area, please apply via email to christoph.wimmer@inso.tuwien.ac.at with a short statement about your background and interest related to this research topic.

Suggested Research Topic: Improving the Robustness and Context-Sensitivity of Mobile Drinking Water Quality Testing Solutions

Drinking water is one the most important and fundamental elements every human needs to prosper. Having access to clean drinking water was declared as a universal Human Right by the United Nations in 2010 [1]. Nevertheless, in reality there is a lack of quality access to drinking water – at least 2 billion people use drinking water sources contaminated with feces. Contaminated water can transmit diseases such as diarrhea, cholera, dysentery, typhoid, or polio. Contaminated drinking water is estimated to cause 502.000 diarrheal deaths each year [2].

There are different ways of testing water for its drinkability. One common approach is to use standardized testing strips, as their application is quick and cost-efficient. However, the test results of water testing strips can be flawed by interpretation errors, as the person carrying out the test has to compare the colors on the strip with a reference card. Additionally, tests from different persons may result in different outcomes.
The goal of this research topic is to explore and develop easy to use solutions with the help of mobile applications to replace and assist the human eye and interpretation with the help of a smartphone’s camera and context-sensitive visualizations.

Recommended prior knowledge: Android App development and basic understanding of computer graphics (image processing).

Students who wish to work in this area, please apply via email to deco-teaching@inso.tuwien.ac.at with a short statement about your background and interest related to this research topic.

[1] http://undocs.org/A/RES/64/292
[2] https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/drinking-water

Suggested Research Topic: Influence of Response Times on Perceived Trustworthiness

Long, unexpected waiting times can damage the trust a user has placed in a system. This is particularly important in the context of online banking and electronic payment systems, where long waiting times leave users uncertain about the success of a transaction.

One specific research idea is to evaluate and quantify the influence of a payment system’s response time on the users’ perceived trustworthiness of the system. Multiple studies can be conducted based on this research idea by varying the design elements (i.e., UI elements that set expectations regarding waiting time), the risk involved (e.g., the sum involved in a transaction), and the domain (e-banking, p2p payment, e-commerce).

This specific topic is not available anymore. Nonetheless, students who wish to work in the more general area of trust and HCI, please apply via email to deco-teaching@inso.tuwien.ac.at with a short statement about your background and interest related to HCI and this research topic.

Suggested Research Topic: Influence of Branding + GUI Design on Perceived Trustworthiness in the Domain of Online Banking

User interface design and branding is known to have a strong influence on how trustworthy a system is perceived by users. This is particularly important in the domain of online banking and electronic payment systems because of the high risk of financial fraud.

Influence of design factors on the perceived trustworthiness of online banking or payment systems.

Students may apply to write a bachelor or diploma thesis in this area of research. One specific, suggested research goal is to evaluate and quantify the influence of design factors (e.g., user interface styling and consistency, branding, shopping seals etc.) on the perceived trustworthiness of an online banking or e-payment system.

Multiple students are already working on variations of this topic already. If you are particularly interested in this topic, you can nevertheless apply via email to deco-teaching@inso.tuwien.ac.at with a short statement about your background in HCI and your interest in this research topic. We can then seek to define a goal for your work that has not yet been addressed by your colleagues.