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Are People Who Agree to Think Aloud Different?

In an earlier article, we showed that only about 9% of panel participants will eventually complete a study in which they are asked to think aloud. That is, if you need ten usable think-aloud videos, expect to invite around 111 participants. On the surface, this means you’ll need to plan for a lot of people

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Does Thinking Aloud Reduce the Evaluator Effect?

In Think Aloud (TA) testing, participants speak their thoughts while attempting tasks. The process is meant to help researchers identify usability problems and potential fixes. Indeed, in an earlier analysis, we found an increase in problem discovery. Our evaluation of 153 videos, split between TA and non-TA, revealed that evaluators uncovered 36–50% more problems with

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Are 3D Graphs Always Worse Than 2D Graphs?

There are many ways to visually display quantitative information. Excel offers dozens of chart types and color combinations, including those in 3D. But is it good practice to use 3D graphs? Edward Tufte is a famous and vocal critic of using 3D elements or any other decoration in graphs. In his book, Visual Display of

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Classifying Tech Savviness Levels with Technical Activity Checklists

In an earlier article, we demonstrated the validity of measuring tech savviness with technical activity checklists (TAC™) by analyzing the correlation between TAC scores and successful completion rates in four usability studies. The TAC scores significantly correlated with success rates (i.e., people with higher levels of tech savviness tended to complete more tasks). On average,

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How Have UX Job Titles Changed in the Last 15 Years?

What we do on the job can change. Jobs change and job titles change. Sometimes the titles change more than the jobs. For example, what do you call someone who professionally creates software? One analysis shows that the most popular job title associated with this function has evolved from Computer Programmer in the 1980s, to

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Does Removing the Neutral Response Option Affect Rating Behavior?

Many topics about the design of rating scales can provoke strong opinions and heated debates. The arguments include whether or not scales should include a neutral response. Unlike rating scales with an even number of points (e.g., 4, 6, or 10), rating scales with an odd number of points (e.g., 5, 7, or 11) contain

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Validating a Tech Savviness Metric for UX Research

Some participants in usability studies complete a task effortlessly, while others struggle with the same task. In retrospective UX surveys, some respondents report having an easy time using a website and strongly recommend it to others, but others report having a much poorer website experience. Why? What explains the discrepancy between experiences, especially when the

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Describing SEQ® Scores with Adjectives

How hard is it to figure out the total cost of a mobile phone service plan? Have you had trouble finding the customer support number for your cable provider? How do you quantify these experiences? What words would you use to describe them? While we have ways of measuring perceived ease using numeric scales, rating

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UX and NPS Benchmarks of Theme Park Websites (2023)

While life can feel like a metaphorical roller coaster, in some cases, there is a literal roller coaster. In 2021, over 100 million people ventured to a theme park in North America. For many of these visitors, the experience started well before the thrill of the ride, when they bought tickets and researched details about

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Measuring Tech Savviness with Technical Activity Checklists

UX research is geared primarily toward understanding how to improve the experience of products, websites, and software. The intent is not to assess people but to use people to assess product experiences. But people’s ability to solve technical problems—what we often loosely refer to as tech savviness—can confound our research findings. That is, including only

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