Full Record – Author

Ref Type: Journal Article

Authors: Duncan,Vicky, Fichter,Darlene M.,

Title: What words and where? Applying usability testing techniques to name a new live reference service

Publication Full: Journal of the Medical Library Association

Year: 2004 Volume: 92 Issue: 2

Start Page: 218 Other Pages: 225

Descriptors: LIBRARIES, LIBRARY users, WEB sites, MEDICAL sciences, UNIVERSITY of Saskatchewan (Saskatoon, Sask.), SASKATOON (Sask.), SASKATCHEWAN, CANADA,


Objective: A user-focused design approach was taken to develop a new "live reference" service at the Health Sciences Library, University of Saskatchewan. The name of the service, the placement of the links, and the design of a graphical button were seen as key elements in creating service awareness and its subsequent use. Methods: To ensure library users recognized and understood the label for the new service, selected library users were given an opportunity to choose a phrase that would best describe the service. The top two preferred phrases were then placed on the library Web pages as text and graphic images for further testing. Some pages had links in multiple locations to determine which placement worked best. Task-based usability testing was carried out with participants who were unaware of the new service. Participants were observed as they completed seven Website tasks arranged in increasing levels of difficulty to see whether they would notice the live reference service and seek assistance. Results: The high level of recognition and use of the service indicate that the label name and link placement were effective with library Website users. Conclusions: Using user-centered design methodology helped ensure that the new live reference service was visible and used and demonstrated the effectiveness of the user-centered design approach for adding new services to an existing Website. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]; Copyright of Journal of the Medical Library Association is the property of Medical Library Association and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)


M3: Article; Duncan, Vicky 1; Email Address: Vicky.Duncan@usask.ca; Fichter, Darlene M. 2; Email Address: Darlene.Fichter@usask.ca; Affiliations: 1: Information Services Librarian, Health Sciences and Main Library, University of Saskatchewan, 107 Wiggins Road, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5E5, Canada 2: Data Library Coordinator, Health Sciences and Main Library, University of Saskatchewan, 107 Wiggins Road, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5E5, Canada Source Info: Apr2004, Vol. 92 Issue 2, p218; Thesaurus Term: LIBRARIES; Thesaurus Term: LIBRARY users; Thesaurus Term: WEB sites; Subject Term: MEDICAL sciences; Subject Term: UNIVERSITY of Saskatchewan (Saskatoon, Sask.); Subject Term: SASKATOON (Sask.); Subject Term: SASKATCHEWAN; Subject Term: CANADA; Number of Pages: 8p; Illustrations: 5 charts, 3bw. Document Type: Article

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Retrieved Date:January 1, 1970

Editors: NULL

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Publisher: Medical Library Association

Place Of Publication: NULL

Issn Isbn: 15365050