Term Paper: Human Factors System Design

By | April 28, 2011

Sample Term Paper

Introduction

Usability can be defined as a quality attribute that measure the ease of use of a user interface. With current advances in Human Factor design technologies as well as growth of websites on the Internet, usability has become of the critical component for any website to retain traffic and survive on the Internet. With so many great design and large number of websites, people always look for an excuse to leave a website and go to another. For example, if a website is difficult to use, they move. If the home page does not tell them what the site is about, they leave.

Even if the information on the website is a bit difficult to read, people think about looking for other websites, even though they might offer lower quality and range of products. In other words, people don’t like spending time of learning to use a website; they are more interested in getting their work done as soon as possible, which is only possible if the website has great usability (Proctor and Kim-Phoung 2005). This criterion is even tougher for websites that are related to E-Commerce. Traffic on these website, drive their sales and growth, hence if these websites loose traffic, then their companies are bound to fail (Jacko and Stephanidis 2003).

Components of Usability

Usability of a website can be described by five components of quality. The Learnability of a website measures how easy it is for the users of a website to learn to perform a task on website, when they use it for the first time. The Efficiency of a website measures how quickly the users who are familiar with the website design perform their task. Memorability of a website measures the ease with which users who return to the website after some time are able to re-establish their proficiency. Errors measures how easy it is for users of a website to make error. And satisfaction measures the overall pleasantness of the experience of using a website. Other quality attributes also include utility which measure if the website fulfil the purpose for which it was made (Karwowski 2006).

Objective

The objective of this coursework is measure the usability of the website located at

http://www.domestic.co.uk

This evaluation would help in improving the website design to increase its usability, thus helping it in maintain its traffic while gaining new visitors as well.

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