Usability Assessment: How to Measure the Usability of Products, Services, and Systems

Usability Assessment, Volume 1 in the new HFES series "User's Guides to Human Factors and Ergonomics Methods," is a concise volume for anyone requiring knowledge and practice in assessing the usability of any type of product, tool, or system before it is launched. It provides a brief history and rationale for conducting usability assessments and examples of how usability assessment methods have been applied, takes readers step by step through the process, highlights challenges and special cases, and offers real-life examples. By the end of the book, readers will have the knowledge and skills they need to conduct their own usability assessments without requiring that they read textbooks or attend workshops. 

Usability Assessment paperback (120 pp, 7 x 10") and Kindle e-book available on Amazon.

  • Chapter 1. What Is Usability Assessment?
  • Chapter 2. Why Assess Usability?
  • Chapter 3. Prepare to Perform the Usability Evaluation
  • Chapter 4. Create Your Test Plan
  • Chapter 5. Perform the Usability Test
  • Chapter 6. Special Cases of Usability Assessment
  • Chapter 7. Real-Life Example 1: Corporate Web Portal
  • Chapter 8. Real-Life Example 2: High-Security Voting System
  • Chapter 9. Some Parting Advice
  • Appendix A. Usability Assessment Checklist
  • References
  • Index

This book will be valuable for the following audiences:

  • undergraduate and graduate students
  • practitioners
  • usability professionals
  • human-computer interaction professionals
  • researchers in fields such as industrial design, industrial/organizational psychology, and computer science
  • those working in a wide range of content domains, such as health care, transportation, product design, aerospace, and manufacturing.

Educators: Multiple-copy discounts are available for classroom use. Contact to place an order or to request a desk copy.

Dr. Philip Kortum has again demonstrated his ability to capture a broad area in our field and summarize it in a practical, usable way. Usability Assessment: How to Measure the Usability of Products, Services, and Systems provides a comprehensive overview of usability assessment and a framework that begins with the rationale for assessment and walks the reader through each step of the process with guidance, answers to the reader’s questions, real-world examples, and an excellent set of references for diving deeper. While not everyone may agree with everything, part of the special seasoning through the book is Philip’s clear point of view and his ability to engage the reader in some of the tough issues in usability assessment that are still being debated today. - Arnold Lund, PhD, CUXP, Senior Manager, Alexa User Research, Amazon.

About the Author

Philip Kortum is a faculty member in the Department of Psychology at Rice University in Houston, Texas. His primary interests are in the research and development of highly usable systems in the voting and mobile computing domains and in the characterization of measures of usability and usable systems. Prior to joining Rice University, Kortum worked for more than 15 years in the defense and telecommunications industries, where he researched and helped field award-winning user-centered systems. He is the author of more than 80 peer-reviewed papers and conference proceedings and holds 49 U.S. patents. He received his MS from Northeastern University and his PhD from the University of Texas at Austin.