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Usability: Why it Matters and How to Test It

What is “usability,” and why does it matter? Good usability creates a smooth, successful, and even pleasant experience for your user. Poor usability causes frustration! As a Technical Communications professional, how can you deliver the best experience for your users, and help improve the overall user experience for the products and systems you support? One way is to perform usability testing on your content. Whether you create printed guides, online help, or web or mobile content, usability tests show you what your user won’t tell you. Can she find the information she needs? Once she finds it, is it useful to her? Can she successfully complete the task? Are you speaking his language, or are you confusing him with unfamiliar or inconsistent terminology? In this session, we’ll explore the practice of usability testing and learn how it can help you provide the best possible user experience. We’ll follow the evolution of a quick reference guide from initial voice of customer input to early design prototyping; and see how usability testing uncovered problems and improved the guide’s design and content. Come see why usability matters! About the Speaker Teri Wareing is a Senior Technical Writer with Leica Biosystems, a global leader in digital pathology. With over twenty years of experience in Technical Communications, she is passionate about achieving excellent user experience in the products she supports and the content she develops. Teri first caught the “usability bug” while working on a next generation insulin pump with Medtronic Diabetes. She is a Certified Usability Analyst with Human Factors International. In her current role, Teri has facilitated usability and voice of customer sessions for product documentation and new software features. Meeting DetailsMake sure you register on Eventbrite: is $20 general admission, $15 STC members and volunteers, $10 full-time students, $5 virtual presentation only. Fees cover STC San Diego's cost for venue rental, food, and beverages.

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