‘everyday’ projects? the design research
projects you hear about most often are enormous, time consuming and expensive. most projects we work on can’t bear that. research can/should be customised to suit the project requirements
what we’ll cover PART ONE:
Designing Design Research PART TWO: Conducting Design Research PART THREE: Analysing Design Research LOTS of hands on exercises. Lots of your questions & shared experiences Focus on QUALITATIVE Research (esp. interview format) Focus more on practical ‘what you can actually do’ than ‘best practice’
mathematics and natural sciences Quantitative
statistically sound, scientific large random samples questionnaires, surveys, tests Quantitative research is the systematic scientific investigation of quantitative properties and phenomena and their relationships. The objective of quantitative research is to develop and employ mathematical models, theories and/or hypotheses pertaining to natural phenomena. The process of measurement is central to quantitative research because it provides the fundamental connection between empirical observation and mathematical expression of quantitative relationships. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantitative_research
social sciences insight gathering, exploratory
small sample sizes Qualitative participatory, observational, interviews, analysis of documents & materials. Qualitative research ...aim(s) to gather an in-depth understanding of human behavior and the reasons that govern human behavior. Qualitative research relies on reasons behind various aspects of behavior. Simply put, it investigates the why and how of decision making, not just what, where, and when. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qualitative_research
‘To design an easy-to-use interface,
pay attention to what users do, not what they say. Self-reported claims are unreliable, as are user speculations about future behaviour.’ - jakob nielson
understanding the problem: what are
you trying to learn? - the problem is not always what it first appears to be - define your research questions - what might be the best ways to answer those questions?
understanding the problem: what is
the context for the problem? - care not to narrow the context early - are their multiple relevant contexts? - WHERE can we learn about the people’s behaviour in relation to this problem? - research as close to context as possible.
EXERCISE! Part 1 Your client
is a grocery store. They want you to do some research and make recommendations about how they can provide a better online grocery shopping experience for their customers. You have unlimited time & budget for your research. What research activities would you suggest?
design research toolkit Qualitative Stakeholder
Interviews Co-design/Participatory Design Subject Matter Expert (SME) Interviews Group/Social Research Competitive Reviews Longitudinal Research - diary study Literature Reviews -twitter - flickr Depth Interviews (Customer&User) Focus Groups Direct Observation (Ethnography) Quantitative Contextual Inquiry Surveys Usability Testing Remote ‘Testing’ Tools ‘Snap’ Interviews Stats/Analytics
squeeze to fit START: design
the research project you’d love to do if time/money/resources were no barrier THEN: work out what is achievable. Be creative!
ways to squeeze - fewer
participants - fewer activities - shorter sessions - less proximate to context (use artifacts) - use technology (phone, web video, twitter) - less complex research activities - more readily accessible participants Even the smallest amount of data beats none. (yes, I’m quoting Jakob again - Guesses vs Data as the basis for Design Recommendations)
how many? as few as
possible. if given the choice to more research studies with few participants. why? - diminishing returns - speed to action (design)
(yes, I’m quoting Jakob again
- Why you only need to test with 5 users) In earlier research, Tom Landauer and I [Jakob Nielsen] showed that the number of usability problems found in a usability test with n users is: N(1-(1-L)n) where N is the total number of usability problems in the design and L is the proportion of usability problems discovered while testing a single user. The typical value of L is 31%, averaged across a large number of projects we studied. Plotting the curve for L=31% gives the following result:
discussion guide > define your
research questions > start as wide as possible, narrow slowly > keep it contextual, not speculative > show, don’t tell (observation = good) (show me how you do that?) > uncover mental models (if you clicked there, what do you think would happen?) > ask OPEN questions (ask questions to get them talking NOT yes/no answers) > take care not to lead (you can have leading questions AND leading structures) > don’t outsource design to your participant! (remember, you’re the designer!)
EXERCISE! Part 2a write a
discussion guide for a depth interview for your grocery store client (who wants to design a better online grocery shopping experience)
what to capture on sticky
notes > *anything* interesting/relevant said in the course of your interview, in as close to direct quotes as possible. > your design ideas > questions for the future > capturing on the fly is a *real* skill. I still live transcribe to a text file then extract affinity notes from the transcription.
interview technique it’s not a
test! - allay their nerves - distance yourself from the design - we only care about *their* opinion, not people they know or ‘most people’ - there’s no right answer or smart answer - their opinion counts - will really help shape the design of the product/service
interview technique - Active Listening
- nodding, smiling & paraphrasing - Focus - don’t let yourself get distracted - Look for physical clues - additional information, and do they match the words? - Don’t Rush - take time to get your thoughts together & prepare your next question - Keep it open - Who, What Where, When, Why, How and my favourite ‘Tell me about...’ - Follow the flow - don’t stick to your script, mix up the order if it flows better for that participant.
interview technique Have a great
closing question. Some of my favourites are: - Do you know someone you might recommend this to? Who/Why - How would you rate it out of 10 - What would you tell the designers Try to summarise the parting sentiment (notes that it is not more or less important than the initial sentiment)
using research data in design:
audience modelling Today I’m pissed HI at British Gas I’m passionate about Education Proximity am I experiencing once my billing the more I learn ‘it’ right now? problem is fixed, the more I care I’m fine. LOW HI Commitment how much will I care next month?
Keith ‘I just want to
know enough to buy well’ Keith is planning to pop the question soon - in about a weeks time The engagement ring will be his first big jewellery purchase. He knows virtually nothing about diamonds or jewellery. He doesn’t want to become and expert, he just wants to know enough to buy well and wants to feel reassured using research data in that he’s getting what he’s paying for. He has a general idea of his girlfriend’s preferred style but is not really confident about choosing the right design. Some of his mates have been engaged recently and models: personas he’s asked them a few questions about the process. He popped into Goldsmiths last week to tentatively start investigating his purchase 32yrs and spent most of the time telling assistants he was ‘just looking’ - he left quite Jnr Mgr, Lloyds TSB quickly, not liking the ‘pressure’ of the store experience. He doesn’t know (but wants Income approx £30K p.. to) what makes one ring so much more expensive than another. investment emotion Purchase Lifecycle STAGE ONE - ‘RADAR’ STAGE TWO - ‘INTENSIVE RESEARCH’ STAGE THREE - MAKE PURCHASE novice expert knows that a potential actively seeking information to find and purchase the ring purchase is on the cards, inform purchase (qualities of has heightened awareness diamond and metal, price etc.) the right ring at the right for self for other price from a company he can of information that crosses Gaining enough knowledge to buy his path but not actively well. trust. need it quickly willing to wait seeking information. 10 days to weeks in advance approx. 1 week in advance of weeks/months in advance. in store, google for information proposal £100 £2000 possible sources: social networks, media/content