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For unionstation.org


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    Marguerite Job

    Intro to Web Publishing

    October 22

    Usability Test For unionstation.org

    Test Preparation

    To prepare for the tests, I first looked through the website myself. After looking around

    the home page to get a feel for the website, I went through each of the four tasks to find out the

    solutions for each one.

    First, I gave the homepage a look-over. I expected a dropdown menu when I hovered

    over category on the navigation bar, since Im used to sites doing performing that action. It did

    not happen. I clicked a category thinking maybe a dropdown menu would appear if I did that, but

    I was directed to a different page, instead.

    The layout of the site is well done. Content isnt cluttered and its easy to navigate what

    the site is about from below the fold.

    I saw Science City was heavily promoted by the website. This was true for both the

    feature content area, the navigation bar, and the content above the fold. Since I have been to

    Union Station before, I know that there are other things besides Science City. Visitors to the site

    who are not familiar with Union Station from out-of-state, or not from the area might not know

    this, however.

    I didn't have any issues with any of the tasks, except for task three. There were some

    misleading terms used, but this is explained further with the testers.

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    Choosing Participants

    Tester 1: Jacob

    For tester 1, I choose Jacob. He easily played along with the tasks given to him and gave

    a detailed analysis of his experience on the site.

    Jacobs a 21-year-old man currently working a part-time job at Sams Club while going to

    college. He regularly uses the internet on his phone, computer, and platforming device. Jacob

    mostly uses the internet to go onto online forums, social media, and streaming services/YouTube.

    Currently, he uses the internet frequently to complete homework assignments. He also shops

    online from time to time.

    He is a high experience tester. Jacob has used sites to do things similar to what tasks he

    performed (i.e. seeing what movies are playing and ordering tickets from fandango.com).

    Environment for Tester 1:

    Location of test: The test was conducted at Jacobs house. He mostly uses the

    internet at his home. This makes it so that its close to how he would use the site if he

    wasnt being tested.

    Physical Environment: His home is relatively clean with some clutter and there was

    very little lighting. The only distractions was his cat and the television, which was

    streaming a movie.

    Technical Environment: Jacob uses an HP Pavillon G6, which has a screen

    resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. He regularly uses Google Chrome as a browser. The

    only plug-in he uses is an ad-blocker.

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    Tester 2: Gail

    Gail was chosen because she explained what she did while she performed the tasks. She

    also gave adequate feedback, so usability issues with the site can be identified and corrected.

    Gails a 45-year-old woman working part-time at a retail store. She mostly uses the

    internet for online shopping and social media. Shes my low-experience user. However, she,

    too, has used sites like fandango.com to find out movie times and to purchase tickets in advance.

    Environment for tester 2:

    Location of test: The test for Gail was taken in her house. She mostly uses the

    internet at her home.

    Physical Environment: Her home is cluttered and kind of messy. The lighting in the

    living room, where the test was conducted, was very well lit.

    Technical Environment: Gail uses an 15 MacBook Pro with retina display, which

    has a resolution of 2560x1600 pixels. She uses Google Chrome as her browser. She

    does not use any plug-ins for her browser.

    Test Results

    Initial Site Thoughts:

    Tester 1:

    Jacob noticed right away that the web site heavily advertised for Science City. He

    mentioned that it looked like that was the only thing there when he first went to the homepage. It

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    wasnt until he scrolled down the page that there would be other exhibits and activities to visit at

    Union Station.

    He also mentioned the layout of the site didn't look too cluttered. The site, initially might

    be easy to navigate.

    Tester 2:

    Gail also noticed that the website heavily advertised Science City. Until she scrolled

    further on the homepage, she thought Science City was the only thing at Union Station. She

    mentioned plan your visit might be for teachers to set up visit days for their students, not the

    everyday visitor. Overall, she liked the layout of the site since it didn't bombard her with


    Task 1: Scenario: You are bringing your grandmother to Union Station for a Sunday

    afternoon outing, She cant walk more than about 50 steps at a time. Determine whether or not

    there will be a wheelchair available for her to use.

    Tester 1:

    Jacob assumed he would find Guest Amentities under Plan Your Visit. He wasn't sure

    if he would find it there since he expected a hover-down menu. He clicked on Plan Your Visit

    and scrolled through the page with the laptops trackpad until he found Guest Amenities.

    Since Guest Amenities looked like a link, Jacob clicked on it. He found out more

    information about accommodations he could receive, and where/how to get those.

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    This is where Jacob clicked to find out more information.

    Answer: Yes

    Completed: Yes

    Tester 2:

    Gail was confused as to where to go to find Guest Amenities. After a while of trying to

    figure out where to go, she mentioned she was frustrated because she felt as though the

    navigation bar of the site wasn't clear enough and wanted to see a hover-down menu from the


    She decided to go to Plan Your Visit since that makes the most sense to her. She used

    the scroll bar on the side of her browser until she found Accommodations and Transportation

    on the page.

    Answer: Yes

    Completed: Yes

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    Recommendations to improve UX for this task:

    Changing the phrasing Plan Your Visit to something like Guest Information on the

    navigation bar might be a good idea. A lot of websites still use that phrasing Plan Your Visit or

    Visit. (The websites I looked at where sites for the Omaha Zoo, the Kansas City Zoo, and the

    St. Louis Science Center.) Despite the convention, itll save the confusion for users who dont

    frequently use the site or sites similar to it.

    Another recommendation includes having a dropdown on hover menu for the navigation.

    This will save any users from confusion. Plus it will match the platform conventions users expect

    to see since similar sites do this, too.

    St. Louis Science Center uses the term visit and has a drop down menu. The site uses an FAQ for visitors to find out information for guest amenities.

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    Example of how to implement a dropdown menu on unionstation.org:

    Task 2: Scenario: You want to plan to see an Extreme Screen movie during your visit, so

    you want to secure tickets in advance. Determine what is playing Wednesday, Nov. 25.

    Tester 1:

    Since Jacob went to the separate page for Guest Amenities, he clicked on the back

    button to return to the previous page for Plan Your Visit. He looked at the table for Admission


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    From there, he clicked on the button in the Buy Tickets column for the Regnier

    Extreme Screen Theatre. He found the listings of upcoming shows for the theatre. Since each

    listing displayed the dates/time period each show was going to be at the theatre, he found out

    what films would be playing.

    Answer: Jerusalem and Robots 3D

    Completed: Yes

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    Tester 2:

    Gail clicked on the Events Calendar tab on the navigation bar. The page already

    displayed the events going on that day.

    From there, she clicked the arrows located on the calendar until she got to the month of

    November. She clicked on the date (November 25) and the events listed changed. She scrolled

    through the list to see what would be playing at the Regnier Extreme Screen Theatre.

    Answer: Jerusalem and Robots 3D

    Completed: Yes

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    Recommendations to improve UX for this task:

    While both testers found movies that were playing on November 25 very easily, there is

    one way to improve UX for this particular task. Similarly to the previous task, Union Station can

    implement a dropdown menu for events. The landing page could stay the same when a user

    clicks on events calendar, but the dropdown menu can feature each exhibit/theatre at Union


    Heres how to implement a dropdown menu for events calendar:

    Task 3: Go through the steps of buying two tickets for an Extreme Screen movie on that

    day. Determine whether or not you can choose the actual seats for you and your grandmother

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    will have wheelchair compatible seating. [Take this step all the way through the process, and

    only stop when asked to enter credit card information].

    Tester 1:

    From the page he already was on, Jacob clicked on add to basket for one of the films he

    knew played on the day he needed tickets. He knew this because Union Station dates in