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TECHNICAL WRITING MEMORANDUM

TO:

MS. ERIN WEBER

FROM:

KELSEY TAYLOR, KRISTEN STANDIFER, JACK VONDERWERTH

SUBJECT:

USABILITY TEST REPORT

DATE:

OCTOBER 23, 2014

We are writing you in regards to the outcome of our usability testing. Together, we have
devised a draft for the shark identification key and tested it on average individuals. Once we
completed testing, we took all results into consideration for our final draft. Our team members
followed specific protocol and worked together to make necessary adjustments to the final draft.
As a team we had specific testing standards for each member to follow when testing users.
The first objective was explaining that the ID key is only used to identify the 7 main types of sharks
found around and near Florida. We identified all aspects of information to prevent any future
confusion during the test. As the administrator, we recorded the time for each user, and we took
notes during the usability test. It was the administrators responsibility to inform the user that they
may think aloud but all questions will be answered at the end of the test unless the user takes any
longer than 5 minutes. We asked the user to write their answers below each picture and to let us
know when they were done. Once completed, the administrator then went over the test with the
user and asked what each user liked and didnt like about the manual. Jack Vonderwerth
administered each test to the four users separately. The average time recorded for all users was
approximately 3 minutes.
The users we asked to complete our testing included average college students that were not
necessarily familiar with sharks. We targeted this audience because we wanted to see if it could be
used by anyone and not just individuals familiar with sharks. Overall, there were 4 individuals tested
by one of our team members.
Our first draft was 6-pages long, and we had information regarding physical attributes and
habitat locations for each shark. We included pictures with each shark description and listed our
references on the back of the manual. The draft included color photos that were fairly small but still
usable. The overall size of the draft was approximately 4.25 x 5.5. We wanted to test the quality of
our pictures and the general layout of the manual.
We gathered successful results that greatly impacted our final draft. After hearing from
several users, we determined what pictures were easily recognizable and which ones needed to be
replaced. Users also pointed out missing information that they felt would be appropriate for our
manual and recommended we delete our habitat information. As we observed the user, we noticed
that they had difficulty distinguishing the Bull shark from the Lemon shark.
After listening to our users recommendations, we have many adjustments to make to our
draft. We need to include user instructions, warnings, and a help hotline. As a group, we also
decided to delete our habitat information and to include bigger pictures. We replaced a few pictures
that successfully display each shark. We also organized the information based on length, color and
distinct features. We directed help towards the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
for any questions or concerns regarding the sharks or ocean wildlife.