Cover Page by Jenny Preece, Helen Sharp, Yvonne Rogers

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Chapter 12

INTRODUCING EVALUATION

  • 12.1 Introduction
  • 12.2 The Why, What, Where, and When of Evaluation
  • 12.3 Types of Evaluation
  • 12.4 Evaluation Case Studies
  • 12.5 What Did We Learn from the Case Studies?

Objectives

The specific aims of this chapter are to:

  • Explain the key concepts and terms used in evaluation.
  • Introduce a range of different types of evaluation methods.
  • Show how different evaluation methods are used for different purposes at different stages of the design process and in different contexts of use.
  • Show how evaluators mix and modify methods to meet the demands of novel systems.
  • Discuss some of the practical challenges that evaluators have to consider when doing evaluation.
  • Illustrate through short case studies how methods discussed in more depth in Chapters 7 and 8 are used in evaluation and describe some methods that are specific to evaluation.

12.1 Introduction

Imagine you have designed a website for teenagers to share music, gossip, and photos. You have prototyped your first design and implemented the core functionality. How would you find out whether it would appeal to them and if they will use it? You would need to evaluate it – but how? This chapter presents an introduction to the main types of evaluation and the methods you can use.

Evaluation is integral to the design process. Evaluators collect information about users' or potential users' experiences when interacting with a prototype, a computer system, a component of a computer system, an application, ...

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