Who took the "U" out of usability? An analysis of professional web site use and usability in a midwestern urban school [electronic resource] /

by Hart, Timothy R.; Theses and, OhioLINK Electronic

Abstract (Summary)
The primary goal of this study was to investigate usability issues surrounding a teacher-oriented Intranet site in a mid-size urban school district in the Midwest: the factors that have affected teachers use of the web site, the influences that have impacted the overall design and usability of the web site, and to what degree theories of effective web site usability have been implemented in the creation of this site. The characteristics of usability considered were communication of the sites purpose, content writing, links, navigation, graphics and animations, and graphic design. Data were collected via direct observations, web site usability activity cards, quantitative usability questionnaires, focus group discussions with 3 groups of 8 literacy educators in the school district. Data analysis was completed through the researchers qualitative coding and triangulating of both the observational field notes and focus group transcripts. An Analysis of Variance was used to compare the means of the time required to complete tasks and the number of correct responses of the participants in the web usability card activity. This comparison was done by age, gender, and years of teaching experience. The usability questionnaires were used to compare the means of the extent of participants agreement on a series of web site usability statements. Data analysis indicated that there are factors beyond web site usability that impact teachers use of this web site. In addition, the restrictions of the web-based templates compound the factors that impact teachers use of the web site as well as the designers incorporation of usability theory in the design of the site. Several conclusions were drawn from this study. The most important conclusion is that we must consider the stakeholders first in all issues of usability, including external issues that prevent teachers from using these web-based resources.
Bibliographical Information:


School:University of Cincinnati

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:university of cincinnati


Date of Publication:01/01/2005

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