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Information Technology Centre Usability Laboratory

In cooperation with the UNB Psychology Department, the Information Technology Centre in the Faculty of Computer Science carries out formal usability evaluations of computer systems (hardware, software or a combination of the two). These evaluations are carried out in a dedicated space (completed in September, 2000) known as the Usability Laboratory.

Services

To provide expert and professional service in the evaluation of the user interface for computer software or hardware developed by a company or any organization. The Usability Lab is commonly used at the end of the development period, where it would evaluate such things as:

  • How long does it take a new user to learn the user interface?
  • What types of errors are produced?
  • What degree of difficulty is encountere
  • Does the system yield problems not anticipated or expected by a user?
  • What suggestions for improvement do members of the target user group have?

The Usability Lab can also provide evaluation during the early stages of software or hardware development, as follows:

  • During the analysis and design phases of the development, provide assistance concerning the human computer interaction aspects of the software and/or hardware.
  • Provide assistance with design strategic for user friendly computer human interfaces.
  • Assure that the various subtasks performed by the computer system and the associated interface follows established human factors and ergonomic principles.

Equipment and Software Available

  • Colour video cameras (2)
  • Video recording & playback
  • Audio recording & playback
  • Software for experimental and statistical analysis
  • Eye-tracking system
  • Complete participant/observer room with half-silvered mirror, sound-deadening environment and staging area
  • Professional database and reporting system for experimental setup and analysis