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Webcams in Remote User Experience Testing - Advantages and Drawbacks

featured / user experience / eye tracking / usability
When it comes to UX testing of desktop websites and prototypes, our preference as UX researchers is to conduct moderated sessions in the lab because we collect richer qualitative data; however, remote moderated sessions have their own advantages. For starters, it's generally less expensive in that you don't have facility costs. It also allows you to obtain a more geographically diverse sample, because it eliminates the requirement that your participants be located within a certain distance from the facility. Lastly, it also helps mitigate lab effects because participants will (ideally) be interacting with the interface in their natural environments (1). The advantages of remote moderated testing are well-known, but some aspects that don't get discussed enough are the technical requirements and the necessary equipment. In... more
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Using Area Weighting and Confidence Intervals to Improve Quantitative Eye Tracking Data

featured / user experience / eye tracking / quantitative
For this blog post I wanted to address an issue user researchers often encounter when conducting an eye tracking study with different sized areas of interest (AOIs). Specifically, researchers often attempt to identify which AOIs are attracting the most attention. For example, imagine the heat map in Figure 1 represents the results from 30 participants asked to identify how many followers this Twitter profile has. The image on the left shows five main AOIs: Profile, Trends, Feed and Suggestions. Eye Tracking Fors Marsh Group In general, the heat map tells a clear story: most people looked at the "Profile" AOI, which makes sense since that is where followers are listed. However, let's say we wanted to provide... more
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Eye Tracking for Forms and Surveys - Not Always a Good Idea

featured / user experience / eye tracking
Eye tracking is getting to be more and more popular and easy to use in usability testing. The eye-tracking technology is getting smaller, more affordable, and easier to use, and with these changes, more and more clients are eager to incorporate it into their UX work. But it is not always a useful methodology, especially when we are testing forms and surveys, where participants may look away while they are filling in their responses. In a recent book chapter in Eye Tracking in User Experience Design(1), Caroline Jarrett and I explore what eye tracking can tell us about the user experience of forms and surveys. We also discuss when eye tracking is appropriate and when it can be misleading. Here I share... more
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Eye Tracking in UX Design and UXPA's User Focus Conference Made for a Busy October

featured / eye tracking / ux / usability
It’s been a busy October for FMG’s UX team. The week of October 13 was jam-packed with two professional conferences both chaired by our team lead, Dr. Jennifer Romano Bergstrom. David Hawkins presented at the Eye Tracking and UX Design Conference, while the rest of the team (Jake Sauser, Jon Strohl, Christian Gonzalez, and Jen Romano Bergstrom) presented at UXPA's User Focus DC 2014 Conference. To share our experiences with you, I'm including a few of the UX team's favorite takeaways. Eye Tracking and UX Design on October 16, 2014 Eye Tracking in UX Design David Hawkins and Jen Romano Bergstrom presented “Eye Tracking the User Experience of Forms and Surveys.” They talked about the studies we... more
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Jumping Right In -Two Workshops Highlighting Eye Tracking and User Experience

featured / eye tracking / ux / usability
After joining Fors Marsh Group a few weeks ago, I’ve had the privilege of attending a few events in the DC-area. The first two workshops I attended were fantastic and both shed light on the benefits of eye tracking and mobile usability. DC-AAPOR’s Eye-Tracking Workshop at Gallup Institute on Friday, Sept. 19, 2014 Dr. Jennifer Romano Bergstrom led a day-long workshop that introduced eye tracking, why we should/want to do it, the pros and cons, protocols for conducting, what we learn from eye tracking, and the best way to position it to clients. The participants came from very different backgrounds, and to my surprise, not many were UX practitioners. What we all had in common was that we were interested in learning more about eye... more
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Better Data in Five Steps: UX Testing

eye tracking / research design / usability / user experience / blog
Last week, Jen wrote about resolutions for being a UX Champion. This week, I want to highlight five simple ways that UX research teams can improve the UX testing environment. Improving the testing environment in the following ways will ensure the validity of data and provide participants with a more pleasant experience. 1. Don’t interrupt. The UX data collection process often relies on concurrent think aloud protocol. In this method, researchers ask participants to think aloud and narrate everything they are doing (e.g., reading, searching for links, interpreting graphics). This method is valued by UX researchers because it allows us to hear things like initial impressions of design features and experiences using site search and navigation. Users’ comments are very powerful when inserted into... more
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Eye Tracking Your Mobile User Experience

eye tracking / research design / user experience / usability / blog
Mobile devices are transforming how we use technology. Pew Research Center reported in June, 2013 that 56% of all US adults own a smartphone (1), and that number is only expected to increase in the years to come. As a result of increased ownership, there has been a surge in usage of mobile versus desktop computers for exploring online everyday needs – from checking email and social media, to shopping, banking, document creation, and socializing. For example, Pew also reported that 32% of US adults now bank using their mobile phones (2). As a result, the usability of mobile platforms and applications is more important than ever as people rely on their handheld device. For the average mobile user, even after becoming comfortable using a... more
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