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Designing Web Navigation by James Kalbach

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CONSOLIDATING RESEARCH FINDINGS

After conducting research, you'll have to make sense of what you've found. Be careful that research findings don't get misinterpreted. There are several potential pitfalls to avoid:

Don't make quantitative conclusions for qualitative studies

A common mistake is to make quantitative conclusions from a qualitative study. If you interview five people and two make negative comments, for instance, you can't make reliable conclusions such as 40 percent of participants dislike the web site. Instead, with qualitative methods, focus on the things people do and say that explain their behavior, not the numbers.

Refrain from treating design research as if were science

Though many of the techniques may be similar, design research has a different purpose than scientific research. Design research methods are solution-oriented, with a focus on creating innovative artifacts, e.g., a usable navigation. Scientific methods generally result in abstract models and theories that apply across situations. This is an important distinction—one that you should be clear about up front.

Avoid mixing interpretation with personal preference

Conclusions from design research, though not scientific, are not mere guesses based on opinion either. An interpretation implies there is evidence to support a conclusion and it is more than just a hunch or best guess.

Try not to overgeneralize

Don't overgeneralize your interpretations and conclusions. If one person mentions disliking the Top ...

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