Cracking The UX Researcher Glossary

Illustration: Mayur Chadhuary

Research is a core to every project we take up and helps us uncover what we know or doesn’t know about our consumers. Being a UX professional there are terms and methods that we use in day today research activity and it’s worth to know the literal meaning and keep them handy for our future reference. Feel free to ping me for any addition to this list. Happy reading..:-)

List of UX Research Glossary:

Human-Centered Design: A design problem-solving process that prioritizes the users’ needs, wants, and limitations.

Design Research: A research-driven process that helps define how a problem is solved, and communicates the value of the solution.

Context: The users and environment they interact with.

Commodity: Something easily available, financially and intellectually.

Crowdsourcing: The process of collecting services, ideas, and content by asking a large group of people to contribute and build on each other’s ideas.

Research Method: A structured process of collecting data. Secondary Research — reviewing and summarizing existing research.

Primary Research: Research collected directly from participants.

Quantitative Research: An output of research that results in something measurable, such as a quantity, statistic, or numerical information.

Objective Data: Research information that is difficult to argue against.

Qualitative Research: An output of research that results in something subjective, such as beliefs and opinions.

Subjective Data: Research information that is collected through interviews and includes feelings, perceptions and concerns.

Generative Research: Research that is conducted during the early stages of a project. It may also be called formative research.

Evaluative Research: Research that is conducted in the later phases of a project, validating research by testing potential solutions. It may also be called summative research.

Iterative Design: The process of testing and refining repeatedly until a successful solution has been discovered.

Market Research: Research that studies human behaviour toward a market-based economy, focused on understanding how humans connect to goods, services, and experiences.

Demographics: Collections of quantitative data that represent a group of people or market segment.

Psychographics: Collections of qualitative data that represent the subjective beliefs of a particular demographic.

Ethnography: Research aimed at understanding the connection between human behaviour and culture.

Empathy: understanding another person’s situation from that person’s perspective.

Research Tools: Practical techniques of engaging with primary and secondary research methods, such as literature review, competitive analysis, interviews, surveys, and focus groups.

Literature Review: The act of reviewing and summarising key documents, publications, articles, and books centered on a specific topic.

Competitive Analysis: A market research strategy used to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of an organization’s competition.

Media Scanning: reviewing materials written and produced by competing organizations.

Observational Note-Taking: Involves a researcher watching and recording human behavior.

Photo Ethnography: Recruiting research participants to document an aspect of their life with photography.

Surveys: Are administered by a researcher asking the questions verbally, through either the telephone or in person. Questions are asked to a sample audience that is a representative of a larger population.

Questionnaires: Ask participants to respond on their own, usually through an online form or via a paper document.

Open-Ended Questions: Survey or interview questions that prompt participants to respond with their own answer.

Closed-Ended Questions: Survey or interview questions that prompt the participants to choose their answers from a given list of replies.

Interviews: A research tool that involves asking a set of questions directly to a participant.

Interview Probes: Follow-up questions or phrases to use in an interview in order to help get more details, such as “tell me more,” “why does that matter?” or “can you give me an example?”

Focus Group: An interview-like tool where a moderator asks a set of questions to multiple people at once.

Bias: A researcher’s natural opinion toward something, favorable or not, based on subjective beliefs, such as “I have a bias toward female athletes because I am one.”

Information Literacy: The process of finding information and using it to effectively solve a problem.

KWHL Table: Establishes a research strategy by organizing your initial ideas into these 4 categories — K: what you know; W: what you don’t know; H: how you’ll figure it out; and L: what you hope to learn.

The Research Logic Model: is a graphic tool/organizer developed and evolved by graduate students at Kent State University’s Visual Communication Designs Program. The tool helps to organize how you engage with your research sources.

POEMS: Developed by Kumar and Whitney, POEMS is a graphic organizer that helps sort research into people, objects, environment, messages, and services.

AEIOU: Developed by the Doblin Group, AEIOU is a graphic organizer that helps sort research into activities, environments, interactions, objects, and users.

The 5Es Experience Model: Developed by Conifer Research, the 5 Es is a graphic organizer used to analyze and organize research from an experience. The 5 Es stand for entice, enter, engage, exit, and extend.

Personas: fictitious summaries that represent users in a particular demographic.

Prototype: an example of a final solution that you can test with your end user.

Rapid Prototyping: a quick form of prototyping that focuses on making simplistic models in order to quickly test and refine ideas.

Do let me know if there is a major miss and I will add to this list.

Happy reading and thank you for making it to the bottom of this post. If you find my ideas interesting do follow me on twitter @imayurchaudhary, check out my LinkedIn page.