Overview

10 participants, all undergraduate students at NCSU, participated in a round of usability testing for the library catalog during March 2006. 5 participants used the old Web2 catalog interface and 5 used the new catalog interface with Endeca keyword searching to complete the same set of tasks. All 10 sessions were conducted individually in the usability lab and the digital recordings are available for further review. The primary goal of the test was to determine whether the new catalog interface enabled users to find materials more easily than the old Web2 catalog interface for both known-item and topical searches. A secondary goal of the test was to determine how effectively users were able understand and use the new search interface. Quantitative comparisons, such as task duration and task success rates are available in Part III of this report, while Part II focuses on the usability issues encountered by the 5 participants using the new catalog interface.

Team and Partners

  • Emily Lynema -- test creation
  • Hilary Davis -- test administration
  • Catherine Pellegrino -- test administration
  • Jim Tuttle -- test administration

Technical Details

Recordings were made in the NCSU Libraries Usability Research Lab using Morae usability testing software.

Project Links

  • Script -- The test script with instructions and explanations for participants.

Reports and Presentations

Videos

 

Note that all users in these recordings signed a release form that included the following language:

Recordings made during this study will be used for research and development. Therefore, I understand that my work during the test will be recorded and viewed by the staff of the NCSU Libraries. I further understand that the NCSU Libraries may wish to use segments of these recordings to illustrate presentations offered to professional audiences. I give my consent to the NCSU Libraries to use my recorded image and voice for these purposes, with the provision that my last name will not be associated with the recordings and that these recordings will not be released to any broadcast or publication media.

Last updated: June 8, 2009