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Usability Tests: Developing Scenarios

Dr. Will Kurlinkus

Assignment 4.2 Sheet

4.2 Creating Your Usability Test


Scripted Intro: Replicability


Gather Demographic Info: Anything that would skew the test; to prove to
client that these our typical users (or atypical); trace trends


Homepage Tour: Warm-up, basic aesthetics, purpose of site, site layout


2 design Scenarios


Homemade Method


Concluding Remarks: Anything else you saw about the site that you would


Debrief Amongst Your Team: Get key info down quickly you want to

4.2 Creating Your Usability Test

What will each team member do? Facilitator/script reader, note taker, extra
questions person.
Think Aloud Protocol: encouragement without leading
Facilitators should answer participant questions about thetestnot about the website
Get subjectsto verbalize their thoughtsthink aloud. Ask open ended follow up
questions: What confused you about that? What do you mean by that
Acknowledgment tokens (mmhmm, yes, ok); paraphrasing (repeating back what they
said); clarifying for observers (I love this>so you love the home link, ok)

What types of data are you looking for?

Specific times of activities and full test

Redesigns your subjects suggest
Redesigns your subjects imply
Images of struggle

4.2 Creating Your Usability Test

Structuring Your Test: Generally, your test should go from less to
more specific and from objective to more subjective.
Avoid starting with questions like: What do you find wrong with this
Avoid having scenarios that teach your user how to solve another
one of your scenarios

4.2 Usability Test Technology

Quicktime Screen Recording: (Test this out BEFORE your usability test) Open
Quicktimeplayer on a Mac>File>New Screen Recording>Click the upside
down triangle on the right side of the red circle>select built in microphone
and show mouse clicks in recording>Hit the red > click the mouse to begin
recording> click the circle with a black square in it icon in the upper right
hand of your screen> save the movie to an external hard drive for reference
Making your mouse bigger: On a Mac (select the apple icon in the upperleft-hand corner>system preferences>accessibility>scroll the curser size to
the right).
Test to see if voices are being picked up
For PCs: Flashback Recorder Express
You will also be required to use an audio recorder, which you can check out
from me.

Scenarios: Creating realistic activities/tasks for your users to perform during
the usability test that engage the possible errors of the site.
Start with the goals of the website
Put those goals in a realistic context: add constraints
User goal: Browse product offerings and purchase an item.
Poor task: Purchase a pair of orange Nike running shoes.
Better task: Buy a pair of shoes for under $40.

Place some kind of realistic emotional/psychological pressure on your

usability subjects. Tell a story.
Avoid clues in your scenarios. Dont mention the names of section of the
website or links.

Example Scenario
The spring semester is coming to a close, and you are planning
on moving to a new house across town with your 4 roommates.
Only one of you has your own car, and you all decide that it
would be too much of a hassle and too much gas money to try
and drive back and forth in that one car. One of you suggests
that it would be easier to just rent a truck for the day to move
across town. You remember your neighbors from back home
used to hire Penske Trucks to move across town to their new
home, and you suggest to the group that they are a reliable
company to rent from. The trouble is, you dont know where the
nearest truck rental site is near where you live. Without using the
search bar, try and locate what location you would rent your
truck from in your area.

Create a Scenario

Homework: Custom Design Methods

Homework: Read the IDEO design methods cards in our
readings. Choose two of your favorites. Write about how you
might adapt them to your own usability test and why you think
they are important.