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Identified in: uPortal

Login Container

The login form and contents should be wrapped by a primary container for identification and visual formatting.

Login Form

The login form is the primary interaction, consisting of labels and input fields for username and password, and a corresponding submit button.

Error Messages

The login form must provide a clear error message when the login fails. The error message must be clearly identified as an error message and the message itself needs to be clear, concise, and in plain language that a person can understand.

Forgot Password

The most common error in login is the forgotten password. It is now standard convention to have a forgot password link associated with the login form. Ideally, the forgot password interaction would happen within the login component, but due to varying user management systems on the back end it may be necessary to have the link send the user to another application to complete the forgot password interaction.

Remember Me

A "remember me" checkbox aids the user by remembering the username and password entries and auto-populating the input fields in future login interactions. Remembering login information can be problematic with public computers, but the user affordance and convenience, and reduction of help requests make it worth looking at.

Login Help

Aside from assistance with forgotten passwords, other help documentation may be needed or desired. The ability to provide help text and/or link should be available.


1 Comment

  1. There is a trend toward moving the whole authentication process out of target services and handing it off to a separate service entirely.  Where this is done, the login form is not presented by uPortal or Sakai, but by CAS, CWL, Shibboleth, OpenID, etc.   Most "web single signon" services behave this way.  The important usability issues for the user are:

    • The user understands what is going to happen when activating the "log me in" clickpoint.
    • The user continues to understand the state of things when her screen changes from the service main page to the authentication page (which will look entirely different).
    • The user is assured that she is entering her credentials to a valid authentication service, and isn't being spoofed.

    This may imply the need for some componentry to assist the user safely through the transaction.