Practical Statistics for User Experience

  • Each objective will be met though the use of the most appropriate statistical techniques for small and large sample user research data (usability test metrics, conversion rates and survey results). The emphasis will be on interpreting the output from these tests rather than tedious formula memorizations. Data from two competitive usability tests and 5 Summative Benchmarking tests will be used extensively to illustrate the tests and reinforce the importance of using data to inform better decisions. Following the tutorial participants will have continued access to the online calculators with instructions which are maintained by the instructor.

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    Course Goals

    Participants in this tutorial will:

    • Get a visual introduction and refresher to the most important statistical concepts for applied use.
    • Be able to compare two interfaces or versions (A/B Testing) by showing statistical significance (e.g. Product A takes 20% less time than Product B p <.05 or Design A converts 12% versus Design B 5% p < .01 ).
    • Clearly understand both the limits and data available from small sample usability data through use of confidence intervals.
    • Determine your sample size for comparing two designs, a benchmarking study, survey analysis or finding problems in an interface.
    • Determine if a usability test has met or exceeded a goal (e.g. users can complete the transaction is less than 2 minutes or at least 70% of users can complete the task).
    • Get practice knowing what statistical test to perform and how to interpret the results (p-values, confidence intervals, effect size and power).

    Who Should Attend

    Open to anyone who’s interested in measuring usability or conducting user research with a quantitative focus. Participants should be familiar with the process of conducting usability tests (lab or remote testing) as well as basic descriptive statistics such as the mean, median and standard deviation and have access to Microsoft Excel.

    What You’ll Learn

    In addition to enthusiastic instruction, movie-clips and flash animations a hall-mark of this course is that participants will be given an Excel calculator and for each concept we have students in the class perform the statistical tests.

    We have found this hands-on practice and repetition to be both popular and effective. Statistics can be intimidating, but by incorporating many practice exercises the participants remember more and have actionable tools and technique when they leave.