Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Continuous Usability Testing: The importance of Being Iterative When it Comes to Assessment and Development of the Library’s Digital Services
Linköping University, University Library.
2017 (English)In: Proceeding so fthe 2016 Library assessment conference buiLding effective, sustainabLe, PracticaL assessment, october 31–november 2, 2016 Arlington, USA / [ed] Sue Baughman, Steve Hiller, Katie Monroe and Angela Pappalardo, Washington, DC: Association of Research Libraries , 2017, p. 188-194Conference paper, Published paper (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The interest for user experience (UX) and usability in libraries has grown rapidly over the past years and has now become an essential tool for developing and assessing a library’s digital services and physical spaces. It is necessary, though, to recognize that UX incorporates much more than just usability. Norman and Nielsen summarize user experience as something that “encompasses all aspects of the end-user’s interaction with the company, its services, and its products” and continues:

“The first requirement for an exemplary user experience is to meet the exact needs of the customer, without fuss or bother. Next comes simplicity and elegance that produce products that are a joy to own, a joy to use. True user experience goes far beyond giving customers what they say they want, or providing checklist features. In order to achieve high-quality user experience in a company’s offerings there must be a seamless merging of the services of multiple disciplines, including engineering, marketing, graphical and industrial design, and interface design.

Furthermore, they state that it is important to separate the overall user experience from usability, since the latter “is a quality attribute of the UI [user interface], covering whether the system is easy to learn, efficient to use, pleasant, and so forth.”

At Linköping University Library (LiUB) we are slowly moving towards a “culture of usability” where users are being observed interacting with both physical and virtual spaces, the way Godfrey advocates, but this paper will only focus on the library’s online presence. The main objective with this paper is to argue for continuous usability testing, as a part of regular library activity.

Usability testing within the library sector is nothing new per se, but it is usually done in the process of launching a new or redesigned website/UI or implementing a new library system. Most often it has a distinct focus on web development, and is not so much used to develop other services or physical spaces. This is confirmed in numerous articles and UX-blog posts and articles by e.g. Gasparini, Godfrey, Broadwater, and Dominguez, Hamill and Brillat. Sometimes the tests are not conducted by library staff, but by external consultants. Our approach, however, is to use an in-house, continuous process which is applied not only to the library’s website structure, but also to other digital services such as the search box on the library start page and link resolver user interface and the link resolver icon in the discovery tool.

Rettig asks whether such a thing as “grassroots UX” exists in libraries. She wonders if “the UX hopeful, [who] do not have the mandate or team or job title”, can find “ways to apply UX methods to smaller-scale, day-to-day work in the library?” I am inclined to say that it is possible. A UX perspective can and should be integrated in any development project, big or small. The UX philosophy does not have to be initiated as a top-down initiative, and in a sense LiUB’s systematic way of doing usability testing started out as a grassroots initiative.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Washington, DC: Association of Research Libraries , 2017. p. 188-194
National Category
Computer and Information Sciences Human Computer Interaction Human Aspects of ICT Information Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-133718ISBN: 1-59407-987-0 (print)ISBN: 978-1-59407-987-0 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-133718DiVA, id: diva2:1062855
Conference
Library Assessment Conference Building Effective, Sustainable, Practical Assessment, October 31–November 2, Arlington, Virginia, USA
Available from: 2017-01-09 Created: 2017-01-09 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

Continuous Usability Testing: The importance of Being Iterative When it Comes to Assessment and Development of the Library’s Digital Services(774 kB)489 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 774 kBChecksum SHA-512
a4871ea4629f08d18fd2dfac5f6188b518939409b5c2825cd6f9f79f1524d9a4675043cd832cc7310177d5758e8a1d3d84e46b07492f1de5698c4ef134332c8a
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Other links

Link to the complete proceeding

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Friberg, Anneli
By organisation
University Library
Computer and Information SciencesHuman Computer InteractionHuman Aspects of ICTInformation Studies

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 489 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

isbn
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

isbn
urn-nbn
Total: 3464 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf