People Interact

Blog about people-centered design by Lisa Chow and Sandra Sajonas.

Tag Archives: research method

Monthly Method Spotlight Continues

Happy 2015!

new year

Since 2013, we have shared one people-centered method each month. We will be continuing our Monthly Method Spotlight for the 3rd year.

We’ll go over What, When/Why and How.

Stay tuned for our first method of the year in February.

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Monthly Method Spotlight: Parallel Design

building-modelParallel Design

When/why:  A design methodology that involves several designers pursuing the same effort simultaneously, but independently, with the intention to combine the best aspects of each for the ultimate solution.

How: A type of prototyping that can be done by users. Ask users to come up with creative solutions to the issue being addressed. Provide them with basic materials such as pen, pencils, paper, crayons, etc.

Tips: Remember to have users design in separate areas so that they are not influencing each other.

Interested in using/applying these methods in your work? Contact us for more info.

Monthly Method Spotlight: Cross-Cultural Comparisons

chopsticks, fork & knifeCross-Cultural Comparisons

When/why: Comparing across cultures helps us to understand cultural factors that affect decision making and the implications of  these factors. Cross-cultural comparison brings us closer to a universal user experience.

How: Cross-cultural comparisons should be kept in mind when doing any research method. They can be done on their own or incorporated into other research methods. You can use a simple T-chart with each side listing items specific to each national/cultural groups.

Tips: While cross-cultural comparison is certainly important, it’s easy to get caught up in it. Remember the main objective of your research.

Interested in using/applying these methods in your work? Contact us for more info.

Monthly Method Spotlight: Card Sort

CARD SORT

card-sortWhat: Card Sort/Card Sorting

When/why: This low-tech method is a way to get feedback from your target audience/users for designing the information architecture (i.e. navigation menus, drop-down categories, etc.) of an interface (i.e. website, online form, etc.).

How: Example scenario – You would like to create a community directory of resources and services. There are many categories and possibly subcategories (i.e. education, job help, small business, health, etc.) that you need to organize. Have users/participants write down the concepts on post-it notes and index cards and arrange/organize them in ways that make sense to them.

Tips: Take pictures of participants’ card sorts for analysis.

Interested in using/applying these methods in your work? Contact us for more info.

Monthly Method Spotlight: Unfocus Group

unfocus/focusgroupUNFOCUS GROUP

What: Unfocus Group

When/why: This method is a great way to encourage creative and diverse contributions from potential users. Assembling a disparate group of individuals opens up new possibilities and ideas.

How: Example scenario -You are creating a new young adult space in the library.

Rather than focusing on just the prime users (teens), create an unfocus group to chime in on the the new space. Maybe include a parent, an adult library patron, a librarian, a custodian, a library community partner, etc.

Tips: To avoid digressions, make the sessions productive by being goal-oriented. Each session can focus on one goal. For example, one session can explore furniture layout and should have 1-2 potential floor plans by the end of the session.

Interested in using/applying these methods in your work? Contact us for more info.