The User-Reported Critical Incident Method for Remote Usability Evaluation
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Much traditional user interface evaluation is conducted in usability laboratories, where a small number of selected users is directly observed by trained evaluators. However, as the network itself and the remote work setting have become intrinsic parts of usage patterns, evaluators often have limited access to representative users for usability evaluation in the laboratory and the users' work context is difficult or impossible to reproduce in a laboratory setting. These barriers to usability evaluation led to extending the concept of usability evaluation beyond the laboratory, typically using the network itself as a bridge to take interface evaluation to a broad range of users in their natural work settings. The over-arching goal of this work is to develop and evaluate a cost-effective remote usability evaluation method for real-world applications used by real users doing real tasks in real work environments. This thesis reports the development of such a method, and the results of a study to:
- investigate feasibility and effectiveness of involving users with to identify and report critical incidents in usage,
- investigate feasibility and effectiveness of transforming remotely-gathered critical incidents into usability problem descriptions, and
- gain insight into various parameters associated with the method.
- Masters Theses 
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