WIMT Update: Usability expert team gets to work

The Usability Expert Team has been charged to design, conduct and analyze the usability studies that will inform changes to the Libraries’ web site as we migrate to the new Drupal platform. Members of the team are Angela Davis, Katie Garcia, Penny Huffman, Sherry Lonsdale and Bonnie Imler (chair). The team reports their usability study results and recommendations to the Web Implementation and Management Team as needed.

One of the team’s first assignments is to create “personas” of the libraries’ patrons. A persona is a fictional character that is a composite of characteristics and behaviors seen in that user group. Each persona has a first name, background story, use case, and details of their previous library experience. There are personas for new faculty, near retirement faculty, graduate students, World Campus, traditional and non-traditional undergraduate students. The personas are useful in web development to determine the needs, wants, and reactions of a particular group of patrons.

Usability studies on particular pages from the libraries’ web site have already begun, and will continue following the schedule outlined for the Drupal migration. The team will reach out to departments and campuses to schedule individual usability studies. Please contact us at UL-WEB-USABILITY@LISTS.PSU.EDU with any questions! —Bonnie Imler, WIMT Usability Expert Team