INTRODUCTION TO WEB DESIGN USING MICROSOFT® EXPRESSION® STUDIO Usability and Accessibility Scavenger Hunt MODULE 1: Day: 1 THE HISTORY AND THE FUTURE OF THE WEB File name: T.1.1.WS_Usability and Accessibility Scavenger Hunt Key Directions: Using www.usability.gov, answer the questions about the Web design process, usability basics, accessibility, and research-based guidelines. Content: 1. List and describe the four steps to follow when designing a Web site. ANSWERS: a. Plan – Systematically learn about intended users, learn and follow proven guidelines, assemble a team, create a “vision” to benefit visitors and the organization, and be specific about an action plan to accomplish goals. b. Analyze – Find out how well any current site is performing, learn as much about expected users and their needs, create a persona (fictional typical user) that can be used to critically examine typical user scenarios and measure usability in order to focus on user tasks and expectations. c. Design – Clearly define the features, functions, and content of the site. Create a graphical organizer (such as cards) to organize the pages of the site and employ writing guidelines specifically for Web content to create useful content. d. Usability testing must be part of every step of the production process. Representative users can provide an independent view of the site and help evaluate how successfully goals are being met early in the process. 2. Define usability. ANSWER: Usability measures the quality of a user’s experience in visiting and using the Web site (or any product). It is a measure of how easily and efficiently users can use the site to reach their goals and in general, how satisfied they are with the process. INTRODUCTION TO WEB DESIGN USING MICROSOFT® EXPRESSION® STUDIO 3. If you’re designing a site to market a product for a business, what impact can usability have on traffic and sales? Explain your answer. ANSWER: The impact can be dramatic. Users who are frustrated with the process will not buy the product. Users tend to be impatient. Frustration can be caused by ambiguous links, slow processes, incomplete directions, time-consuming details, and lack of organization among other causes. 4. What does usability measure? In your own words, explain each measure identified in the online resource. ANSWERS: a. Ease of learning – Refers to how fast users can master the techniques needed to accomplish their goals on the site. b. Efficiency of use – Refers to how fast an experience user can repeat the learned tasks to accomplish goals again. c. Memorability – Refers to the ability of the user to remember the processes from a previous visit to accomplish goals again without having to learn everything over again. d. Error frequency and severity – Refers to how often users make mistakes on the site, the seriousness of the errors and how quickly the user can recover from the errors. e. Subjective satisfaction – Refers to the rather ambiguous measure of how much the user liked the site. 5. Why were the Web Design and Usability Guidelines developed? ANSWER: Governmental usability guidelines were developed to create a more effective and efficient Web system for the 77 percent of Internet users that took advantage of egovernment sites in 2003. Ultimately, this saves money by improving the efficiency of all agencies and organizations. 6. How can the Research-Based Web Design and Usability Guidelines help determine if a Web site is in compliance? ANSWER: On this site there are a variety of templates and examples to help designers in all stages of the Web site development process. Sites that are already complete can be analyzed with the use of a variety of test-and-refine tools, including usability reports and questionnaires. 7. What does a usability test look for when evaluating a site? ANSWERS: a. Any usability problems b. Quantitative data on users’ performance c. User satisfaction INTRODUCTION TO WEB DESIGN USING MICROSOFT® EXPRESSION® STUDIO 8. Explain the difference between usability and accessibility. ANSWER: Usability refers to the ease of use experienced by users in meeting their needs on a Web site. Accessibility is a component of usability that refers to the user actually being able to use, see, hear, learn, and understand the content of a site. There are specific accessibility guidelines to enable visual, hearing, or mobility-impaired individuals to use the Internet. 9. List at least six accessibility topics that designers should plan issues for. See http://www.section508.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Content&ID=12#Web for ideas. ANSWER: Answers may vary. a. Provide text for nontext elements. b. Ensure that text and images allow for accessibility. c. Provide frame titles. d. Enable users to skip repetitive elements such as navigation links. e. Ensure that plug-ins and applets meet accessibility requirements. f. Synchronize multimedia elements. 10. List two other reliable online resources that provide information about usability and accessibility for Web sites. Why do you consider them reliable? ANSWER: Answers will vary. JUSTIFICATION: The reliability may include a reference to the source of information such as government or Web publishing or Web design software organizations.