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A Practical Guide to Usability Testing

  • Christopher HassEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

One of the most commonly practiced and most powerful tools in user experience research is usability testing, a fairly straightforward and highly effective methodology for identifying barriers to use and for illuminating opportunities for making products, services, and systems more effective, efficient, and satisfying to use. Usability tests can be conducted in a variety of environments with varying degrees of formality, collecting various types of qualitative and quantitative data, and with different types of teams working with the end-users. Usability testing focuses on the product or service, not on the end-user, and is an under-utilized tool in product and service development and implementation. This chapter will describe the steps involved in planning and executing a usability study, from choosing the audience and selecting the test setting to deciding what data to collect, and it provides a framework for evaluating study choices and trade-offs in assessing products, services, and systems to help to maximize the user’s experience.

Keywords

User experience User-centered design Usability testing Human-centered design Audience identification Recruitment Informed consent Moderator’s guide 

Further Reading

  1. Albert, W., & Tullis, T. (2013). Measuring the user experience: Collecting, analyzing, and presenting usability metrics. Newnes.Google Scholar
  2. Barnum, C. (2010). Usability testing essentials: Ready, set...test!. Elsevier.Google Scholar
  3. Chipchase, J. (2017). The field study handbook: The art and science of understanding why. Field Institute.Google Scholar
  4. Dumas, J., & Loring, B. (2008). Moderating usability tests: Principles and practices for interacting. Elsevier.Google Scholar
  5. Dumas, J., & Redish, J. (1999). A practical guide to usability testing. Intellect Books.Google Scholar
  6. Goodman, E., Kuniavsky, M., & Moed, A. (2012). Observing the user experience: A practitioner’s guide to user research. Elsevier.Google Scholar
  7. Hall, E. (2013). Just enough research. A Book Apart.Google Scholar
  8. Krug, S. (2014). Don’t make me think revisited: A common sense approach to web usability (second ed.). Pearson Education.Google Scholar
  9. Robson, C. (2002). Real world research: A resource for social scientists and practitioner-researchers. WileyGoogle Scholar
  10. Wiklund, M., Kendler, J., & Strochlic, A. Y. (2015). Usability testing of medical devices (second ed.). CRC Press.Google Scholar

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.BostonUSA

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