Introduction to UX Methods

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100-level presentation given at the 4th annual St. Louis Day of .NET conference. Not intended to be a comprehensive overview of all UX methods.

100-level presentation given at the 4th annual St. Louis Day of .NET conference. Not intended to be a comprehensive overview of all UX methods.

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  • 1. Introduction to
    User Experience Methods
    Introduction to User Experience Methods
    1
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    Danielle Gobert Cooley
    @dgcooley
  • 2. 06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    2
  • 3. Rate This Session!
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    3
    http://uxmethods.notlong.com/
  • 4. About me
    12 years as user researcher/usability specialist
    BE, Biomedical & Electrical Engineering
    MS, Human Factors in Information Design
    Selected Employers & Clients
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    4
    danielle@dgcooley.com
    @dgcooley
  • 5. Important Things to Know About UX Methods
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    5
  • 6. Please Remember
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    6
    Things to Know
    The purpose of these methods is to inform your design.
    They are notvalidation methods.
  • 7. Let Me Repeat That
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    7
    Things to Know
    The purpose of these methods is to inform your design.
    They are not validation methods.
  • 8. You Are Not Your User
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    8
    Things to Know
    YOU
    NOT YOU
  • 9. Why Do It? To Avoid Ending Up Here
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    9
    Things to Know
  • 10. One More Thing…
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    10
    Things to Know
    The purpose of these methods is to inform your design.
    They are not validation methods.
  • 11. Usability Study
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    11
  • 12. How It’s Done
    Recruit representative end users.
    Observe impartially as they attempt to perform tasks with a prototype.
    Typically, participants are asked to think aloud as they use the prototype to perform the tasks. This provides insight into WHY certain interface elements are confusing and what might work better.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    12
    Usability Study
    Tips…
    • Recruiting the right users is key!
    • 13. Avoid bias everywhere – in task phrasing, your and your observers’ body language, and in verbal questions asked.
    • 14. Recordings are great, but huge time sucks.
    • 15. Quantitative studies often aren’t worth it.
  • A Note About Prototype Fidelity
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    13
    Usability Study
  • 16. Advantages
    Controlled setting means easier logistics.
    Recording and observing is easier, too.
    For the rare quantitative study, lab-based testing makes it easier to use such tools as Morae or Ovo.
    Lab-based testing has fewer variables to control, which can be a factor for more rigid studies.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    14
    Usability Study
  • 17. Disadvantages
    Lab setting provides no context of use.
    Labs can be expensive to rent or build
    (but they don’t have to be)
    Participants are sometimes timid in a lab setting
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    15
    Usability Study
  • 18. Field Study
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    16
  • 19. How It’s Done
    Recruit representative end users.
    Observe impartially in the environment in which the product will be used as they attempt to perform tasks with a prototype.
    Collect artifacts.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    17
    Field Study
  • 20. Advantages
    Gathers contextual data
    Ambient light, noise
    Distractions
    Participants usually less intimidated
    Much more convenient for participants, so recruiting can be easier
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    18
    Field Study
    Contextual Inquiry?
    Though the terms are often used interchangeably, Contextual Inquiry is actually a type of field study that follows a very specific format.
  • 21. Disadvantages
    Logistics are more difficult for researchers.
    Observation is more challenging.
    Recording is more challenging.
    Security issues sometimes prohibit photographs or other recording.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    19
    Field Study
  • 22. Card Sort
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    20
  • 23. How It’s Done
    Recruit representative end users.
    Identify content items to be categorized
    Participants sort the content items into groupings that make sense to them.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    21
    Card Sort
    Two types …
    • In an OPEN card sort, participants create the categories.
    • 24. In a CLOSED card sort, the researcher establishes the categories.
  • Advantages
    Incredibly inexpensive
    Done very quickly with remote evaluation tools.
    Asynchronous, so scheduling is not an issue. Participants take part at their convenience.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    22
    Card Sort
  • 25. Disadvantages
    More complicated with large sets of cards.
    Really, there’s almost no reason NOT to do a card sort, unless you don’t plan to use the results.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    23
    Card Sort
  • 26. Tree Test
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    24
  • 27. How It’s Done
    Recruit representative end users.
    Set up study with IA to be evaluated.
    Give participants specific content elements to find in that architecture.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    25
    Tree Test
  • 28. Advantages
    Incredibly inexpensive
    Done very quickly with remote evaluation tools.
    Asynchronous, so scheduling is not an issue. Participants take part at their convenience.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    26
    Tree Test
    Yep. Just like card sorting!
  • 29. Disadvantages
    The full IA and nav structure must be created in order to execute a tree test, so there is significant investment in the “prototype,” if you will.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    27
    Tree Test
    Tree Test vs. Card Sort
    • An OPEN Card Sort generates an information architecture.
    • 30. A CLOSED Card sort usually evaluates high-level labeling.
    • 31. A Tree Test evaluates findability in an existing information architecture.
    OK. This one IS a validation method.
  • 32. Survey
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    28
  • 33. How It’s Done
    Recruit participants
    Write survey
    Relax while the data rolls right in.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    29
    Survey
  • 34. Advantages
    Cheap
    Fast
    Remote
    Easy data collection
    Large number of participants
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    30
    Survey
  • 35. Disadvantages
    Data are self-reported.
    What people do is not the same as what people SAY they do.
    Good question curation is surprisingly challenging.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    31
    Survey
  • 36. Expert Review
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    32
  • 37. How It’s Done
    An experienced UX Specialist analyzes the product, looking for common mistakes or interface elements or interactions that are not consistent with best practices.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    33
    Expert Review
    Heuristic Evaluation?
    Though this term is thrown around a lot, a Heuristic Evaluation is really a specialized type of Expert Review.
  • 38. Advantages
    Considerably less expensive than lab or field studies
    Often relatively fast – again, as compared to lab or field studies.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    34
    Expert Review
  • 39. Disadvantages
    No actual end-user perspective.
    Experts vary. 
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    35
    Expert Review
  • 40. Other Techniques
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
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  • 41. In No Particular Order…
    Journaling Studies – Users keep a journal of their interactions (good and bad) with the product.
    A/B Testing – Two different versions of a product are placed online and success rates analyzed.
    Analytics – Web site or product metrics are analyzed to determine user success or failure.
    Personas – Descriptive profiles of representative end users. This is actually an output of field research.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    37
    Other
  • 42. Recap & Additional Resources
    User Experience is important. Really.
    These are NOT validation techniques!
    There are a lot of methods to choose from.
    06 August 2011 @dgcooley #STLDODN
    38
    Nov 2011
    http://uxmethods.notlong.com/