The key to great questioning during a user test is respecting natural human limitations in cognition.
While this sounds obvious, test creators often ignore natural human limitations because they want to get a specific question answered.
Key to good user testing questions:
When creating user tests, keep in mind, people are good at explaining why something is confusing, but bad at creating solutions. Tweet this
Example of a bad question:
You probably want to know the answer to this question, but it is counter-productive to ask this question for three reasons:
- A person’s mental visualization of the solution rarely translates properly via text.
- Without testing a proposed “solution”, it is hard to tell if that person really would feel that it is “easier”.
- The test subject doesn’t have the proper background information on the product and company goals to answer this question.
Example of a good question:
This is a good follow-up question if the test subject struggles to complete a task. Since the test subject had an emotional reaction to completing a task (eg it was confusing), he/she typically can point to the source of the confusion.
Conclusion: The best user testing questions ask a test subject why they did something or what they found confusing. Asking for a solution, however, is a bad idea. Tweet this
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