Posts by Heidi Steiner Burkhardt

Let’s Talk About Surveys (Part 2)

happy face with a check mark next to it followed by a neutral and sad faces

Continuing the discussion about survey design (see Let's Talk about Surveys, Part 1), you’ve decided a survey is an appropriate methodology for what you want to find out and are thinking about what questions you want to ask. But how you ask these questions and structure them within the survey itself, as well as the question formats and options you give people for responding all require careful consideration.

Let’s Talk About Surveys (Part 1)

happy face with a check mark next to it followed by a neutral and sad faces

Doing a survey is often the default research method thought of when you need to answer questions about what people like, expect, or want, among other things. While surveys are likely to be considered the easiest option, you can’t conflate “easy to create” with “easy to create well.” Even if a survey is an appropriate methodology for the question you’re looking to answer, the questions you ask, the way you ask them, and the options you give people for responding all require a thoughtful approach...

Words Matter: Terminology in User Experience Research

image of a dictionary page with definition of definition in view

The words we choose matter and having a shared vocabulary around user experience research is an important component of the work. This post presents definitions of user experience, user research, and usability testing, while examining how they intersect and why determining the frame of your research is good practice. Plus the one phrase we try not to use...

Conducting User Research to Build a Better Staff Intranet

picture of a paper card sort on the floor

Everyone who works in the library, including some student workers, uses the intranet -- that’s over 450 people! In preparation for a major Drupal update and intranet redesign, the Intranet Upgrade Investigation Team (IUIT) has done a ton of thoughtful user research to guide our work including a survey, open card sort and closed cart sort. The findings are informing our progress and helping meet the goal of making the intranet a sustainable and user friendly tool that everyone wants to use.