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Mental Models

Cover of Mental Models by Indi Young Published by Rosenfeld Media
  1. Mental Models: Aligning Design Strategy with Human Behavior
  2. Dedication
  3. SPECIAL OFFER: Upgrade this ebook with O’Reilly
  4. How to Use this Book
    1. Who Should Read this Book?
      1. Product Strategists & Executives:
      2. Team Managers:
      3. Evangelists:
      4. Project Managers:
      5. Practitioners:
    2. What’s in the Book?
    3. What comes with the Book?
    4. Here’s How You Can Use Mental Models
  5. Frequently Asked Questions
    1. What is a mental model?
    2. What if I don’t have a big budget?
    3. What do you mean by “task?”
    4. What are task-based audience segments?
    5. How do I uncover the root task?
    6. What do you mean by a content map’s “content”?
    7. Does a content map show every detail of my solution?
    8. How can analyzing gaps in a mental model show me innovative ideas?
    9. How can mental models help me make sense of all my web properties?
  6. Foreword
  7. I. What, Why, When, and Who?
    1. 1. What and Why? The Advantages of a Mental Model
      1. What is a Mental Model?
      2. Why Use Mental Models?
      3. Confidence in Your Design
      4. Clarity in Direction
      5. Continuity of Strategy
    2. 2. When? Using Mental Models with Your Other Work
      1. Determine Your Research Method
      2. How Mental Models Hook into Other UX Techniques
      3. Shortcuts and Other Ways to Use Mental Models
    3. 3. Who? Mental Model Team Participants
      1. Project Leader
      2. Project Practitioners
      3. Project Guides
      4. Project Support
  8. II. The Method
    1. 4. Define Task-Based Audience Segments
      1. Task-Based Audience Segments
      2. Set Research Scope
    2. 5. Specify Recruiting Details
      1. Estimate the Tally
      2. Write the Screener
      3. Coordinate Schedules
      4. Recruit Participants
    3. 6. Set Scope for the Interviews
      1. Set Research Goals
      2. List Interview Prompts
    4. 7. Interview Participants
      1. Chat by Telephone or Face-to-Face
      2. Do Not Lead
      3. Plan Your International Interviews
    5. 8. Analyze the Transcripts
      1. Comb for Tasks
      2. Get Some Practice
      3. Answers
    6. 9. Look for Patterns
      1. Group Tasks into Patterns
      2. Plan Your Logistics
      3. Congratulate Yourself
    7. 10. Create the Mental Model
      1. Build the Model Automatically
      2. Build the Model Block-by-Block
      3. Review the Diagram with Project Guides
      4. What Did You Learn?
      5. Decorate the Diagram
      6. Ask for Feedback
    8. 11. Adjust the Audience Segments
      1. Compare Results to Original Hypothesis
      2. Clarify Segment Names
      3. Adjust Segment Definitions
      4. Use Audience Segments for Other Projects
      5. Transition from Research to Design, Verbs to Nouns
  9. III. Applications
    1. 12. Alignment and Gap Analysis
      1. Draw a Content Map of Your Proposed Solution
      2. Align the Content Under the Mental Model
      3. Consider the Opportunities
      4. Share the Findings
      5. Print the Diagram
      6. Prioritize the Opportunities
    2. 13. Structure Derivation
      1. Derive High-Level Architecture
      2. Provide Vocabulary for Labels
      3. Test Your Structure and Labels
      4. Generate Features and Functionality
  10. A. Acknowledgments
  11. B. About the Author
  12. Index
  13. SPECIAL OFFER: Upgrade this ebook with O’Reilly
  14. Copyright
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Chapter 2. When? Using Mental Models with Your Other Work

Mental models are just one tool in your toolbox. Here’s an explanation of how they work in conjunction with other methods.

Determine Your Research Method

The best way to choose a user research method is to know what each technique is good for. Most user research techniques can be categorized into three groups: preference, evaluative, and generative. The first of these groups is the most widespread—preference. Not only do you see marketing departments sending out surveys and conducting focus groups, but you also see opinion polls flourishing in the media. Preference research ...

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