E13: Create a usability test plan

First, review the “One page usability test plan” from the Readings. Then, work together as a team to create your usability test plan. Create a copy of my Template Usability Test Plan Google Doc, which closely parallels the structure of the one page usability test plan, with some modifications for RadGrad.

Here is an explanation of each section in the template:

  1. Team members: List team member names here.

  2. Business case: Explain why you are doing this usability test now. What are the benefits of testing? What are the risks of not testing?

  3. Test objectives: Create a bullet list of the goals for your usability test. What specific questions do you hope to answer about your design?

  4. Equipment: How will you record data from this test? If you have a Mac laptop, a great approach is the free trial version of ScreenFlow, which enables you to record the screen as the user interacts with the mockup and the comments made during the test. Other approaches, including Windows screen recording software or even a tape recorder app on your phone are possible.

  5. Overall Procedure: Create a bullet list that specifies the structure of your 30 minute (maximum) usability test as a set of “scenes” and how many minutes each scene will take. Here is a template containing six scenes, each five minutes long. You can use this unchanged or make modifications if you like.

    • Scene A. 0-5 minutes: Welcome, sign consent form.
    • Scene B. 5-10 minutes: Go over what this test will involve and your goals for it.
    • Scene C. 10-15 minutes: Landing page.
    • Scene D. 15-20 minutes: Home page.
    • Scene E. 20-25 minutes: Degree Planner page.
    • Scene F. 25-30 minutes: Final comments on design, thoughts for improvement.
  6. Section Scripts and Tasks: For each of the scenes in your procedure, write a “script” that specifies exactly what you will say to the subject, and indicate within that script what “tasks” you want the user to carry out during that scene.

  7. Data collection and analysis: Once you’ve run a usability test and recorded what happened, how do you plan to analyze it? What kinds of data will you extract? Some concepts to think about: task completion; critical and non-critical errors, ease of use, time to completion, satisfaction, confusing, frequency of problems, subjective opinions, likelihood of recommending to another student. Your data collection and analysis should result in answers to the following questions:

    • What was found to be good (helpful, novel, interesting) about your mockup by multiple students?
    • What was found to be bad (confusing, unclear, missing, wrong) about your mockup by multiple students?
    • What are the most important aspects of your mockup to change, and how to change them?


There are two submissions for this experience:

  1. On Tuesday, 3/15, your team will present a draft of your plan for review and critique by the class. This draft will be worth 75% of your grade on this experience. You must post a link of your draft to the #usability channel before class starts.

  2. On Thursday, 3/17, your team will present the final version of your plan. The final version will be worth 25% of your grade on this experience.