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Assignment 4 Specifications 2019 1 COMP3900/6390 Assignment 4 Specifications 2019 Individual assignment. Marked out of 80, worth 10% Due date: 6pm Saturday 19th October (end of Week 11) Introduction This assignment will be a report from you on your observations and experiences when you participated in two credits worth of user studies through the SONA system. One credit is equivalent to one hour of participation in a user study. For this assignment the user studies need to be completed in person. On-line questionnaire-based studies are not suitable. The purpose of taking part in these user studies and writing this report is to prepare you for when you conduct your own user studies, perhaps as a researcher or working as a User Experience or HCI practitioner. You will have a personal understanding of how user studies should be conducted and what is important in conducting them. You can begin writing this assignment as soon as you have completed the participation in the two user studies. For example, you might aim to complete your participation in weeks 1-6 and then write your assignment during the mid-semester break. There is no fixed structure for this report, apart from a cover sheet, page numbers and references. The instructions below list the things you should write about. You can decide on your own priorities and how you arrange what you write. It is important for you to start the SONA participation early in the semester. It can often take longer than you might expect to schedule participating in your chosen user studies. Remember that, for the purpose of this assignment, you are behaving as an intelligent participant in these user studies because you are paying attention to the context and quality of the studies and the behaviour and competence of the researcher. What you should do during the experiments • Make sure the researcher gives you a copy of the Participant Information Sheet. Keep your copy so you can refer to it in your report. • Observe how the researchers treat you. Did they welcome you? Did they explain the experiment clearly? Was there a training phase for the user study? Did they pay attention to you during the user study? Did they debrief you after the user study? Did they thank you for taking part? Make notes for yourself very soon after doing the user study so that you will remember and be able to write your report. • Observe how you felt while you were doing the user study? Did you feel welcomed and valued as a participant? Did you feel the user study was valuable? Write notes for yourself. • Observe the technical competence of the researcher and the setup for the user study. Did their system work? Were they properly prepared? Did their interview questions make sense Assignment 4 Specifications 2019 2 to you? Did you see problems with their method of collecting data and/or the quality of the data? • Think like a spy who is evaluating and critiquing both the researcher and the user study. What you should include in your report • Write a detailed description of each user study. Include the title of the information sheet but, for this particular assignment, do not give the names of the researchers. (2 x 5 marks) • Write a critique of each user study. Remember to be constructive in your critique and to be respectful of the researchers. Write the critique as if you were personally going to read it to the researchers involved. (2 x 10 marks) • Compare the two user studies (10 marks) • Describe what you have learned from participating in the user studies and from writing this report. Link what you write here to specific points in the previous items of this list. You may refer to things that we discussed in lectures and tutorials that relate to running a user study and you may refer to textbooks or other material that you have read. You may cite the information sheets to support the points that you write. In the References section do not give the names of the researchers. See the example at the end of this document. (40 marks) • Include an appendix which contains the two PDF certificates or screen shots from the SONA system that show your participation. The tutor who marks your assignment will need to see these certificates before they begin to mark your assignment. • Remember to keep your report private. Do not show it to anyone else. It is a learning exercise for yourself and the researchers are not able to respond to any criticisms that you might write. If your report is seen by anyone else there is a risk that it might unfairly damage the reputations of the researchers involved. Size of this assignment Your submission will probably be between 6 and 10 pages, not counting the cover sheet. Referencing the information sheets from the SONA experiments You are protecting the identities of the researchers by not giving their names. An example might be: In your report you might write “I learned the importance of giving a clear explanation of the experiment to the participant from the SONA information sheet (Anonymous, 2019a).” References: Anonymous, 2019a. Novel interfaces for colour-blind users. Participant information sheet for a Computer Science PhD research experiment, Research School of Computer Science, Australian National University, Canberra Anonymous, 2019b. Eye-gaze selection of letters in a virtual keyboard for hands-free typing. Participant information sheet for a Computer Science PhD research experiment, Research School of Computer Science, Australian National University, Canberra


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