Sample Virtual Think Aloud Study (see sample results)

Usability Study: Usability Resources Pages

You have been randomly selected from our volunteer database to participate in a usability test for the UPA web site redesign project.

Thanks for in advance for your participation! Your feedback is very important to us.

Goal of this study: To gather user feedback on a high-fidelity prototype of the Resources section of the UPA web site

Expected Completion Time: 30 minutes.

Expected Return Time for Completed Study: End of day, Friday, September 21, 2001.

If you will not be able to complete this study in this timeframe, please let us know so that we can immediately recruit another volunteer.

Instructions: This is a two-part test.

Part I.

Please complete the following tasks using the following web site (tip: You may want to have this file open while you're working on the tasks so you can type your responses in real time.) Consider this file a diary of your experiences with these tasks. Tell us:
· what you decide to do and why
· any problems you have
· any thoughts or feelings about what you see, both positive and negative.

Special note. Please note that this is only a prototype of a section of the web site. You may encounter an incomplete page now and again, and some links that don't work. Also, the visual design, colors, etc., of the site have not yet been implemented. The content layout, however, is pretty-much as we hope to implement it. Try to focus on the tasks and your experience completing them, and not on the aspects of the site that have not yet been implemented. But if you do have any ideas or suggestions about the layout and any thoughts about things you might like to see, please do comment.

Scenario: You are interesting in getting some general information about usability, and finding some resources that you can use in your practice. You visit the UPA web site and click on the "Resources" tab. You are brought to this page:

Using this page as a starting point, complete the following taskss

1. Look for information on remote usability testing.

2. Look for some general information pertaining to the field usability.

3. You are determined to convince your project manager that your team should adopt a usability focus. Find information that would strengthen your argument for usability on your team.

4. Look for information about basic web design principles and concepts.

5. You want to boost your skill level and your resume with new knowledge and experience. Find out how to pursue this goal.

6. Look for information about recruiting participants for a Task Analysis.

7. Look for an example of an actual project that employed a usability engineering approach.

8. You are interested in finding out more about other groups like UPA. Look for information about any such groups.

Part II.

Please answer the following questions:

1. Is the terminology descriptive and easy to understand? Are there any terms that you would change?

2. Is there anything about the layout or design of the pages that you think is confusing or would be hard to use?

3. Please note any comment of suggestions for the further development of these pages