Expert Review

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In user research, there’s more than one expert and there’s also more than one expert review. The 1990s were the golden age of what is loosely referred to as expert reviews or by the more general term inspection methods. Unlike usability testing, which relies on observing users interact with a product or website, inspection methods—as the name suggests—are based on evaluators examining an interface for

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Expert reviews aren't' a substitute for usability testing and don't provide metrics for benchmarking. But they are an effective and relatively inexpensive way to uncover the more obvious pain points in the user experience. Expert reviews are best used when you can't conduct a usability test or in conjunction with insights collected from observing even just a handful of users attempting realistic tasks on a

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It's been 25 years since the development of the Heuristic Evaluation—one of the most influential usability evaluation methods. It's cited as one of the most-used methods by practitioners. Yet its co-creator, Rolf Molich, had recently said it was "99% bad." To understand what would drive such a comment, you need to understand the history and purpose of the Heuristic Evaluation and the broader technique called

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Usability testing is an essential method to measure the user experience. I write a lot about the value of having actual users attempt tasks in an interface...for good reason. Observing just a few participants attempt actual tasks can reveal a great deal about interaction problems and generate ideas on what to fix. But if you conduct enough usability tests and observe enough users, you notice

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