Proposal of a Protocol to Support Product Usability Evaluation

Y.P.C. Aguiar and M.F.Q. Vieira (Brazil)


Usability evaluation protocol; Engineering approach to usability evaluation; Evaluation results credibility


Software development has seen a plethora of processes being proposed, each one bringing new demands in terms of tools and artifacts, thus discouraging the idea of introducing yet more phases into the process. Efforts have been made to integrate Software Development Processes with Usability Engineering, aiming to raise the levels of software products usability. Common grounds are found in various steps that favour such integrated approach but investigation is still needed on how to integrate artifacts from both domains. The software evaluation phase, in particular the usability evaluation, lacks a systematic approach to be considered an engineering practice and to grant credibility to its results. Specifying an evaluation protocol would clarify the procedures, activity flow and artifacts produced on each evaluation phase. This in turn would allow replicating the evaluation procedure under similar conditions. This paper presents a usability evaluation protocol and discusses how to integrate it with the software development process. The protocol is described by means of task model formalism. The protocol validation is also presented followed by a discussion on how to adapt it to other evaluation contexts.

Important Links:

Go Back