Usibility Test of an Oven

Last Sunday I did a usability test with my group members from HCDE 210 class. We tested on an oven which has a model GE 30 free-standing electric range.

model of the oven

Before the test took place, we planned about our user group and tasks.

planning process

We chose frequent users as our user group as frequent users are familiar with how an oven works and we are able to receive authentic and professional feedback of the oven. We set our user tasks to be to move the oven rack from lower position to upper position, remove a baking dish from built-in storage unit and to open the oven and remove a hoy tray. These tasks were set based on several features that the oven has hence we were able to test the oven as a whole. Our data collected are pass/fail, time on task, and user satisfaction, hence we can evaluate based on all aspects of user experience. We had 3 participants completing 3 tasks and we recorded 3 types of data per task. Here is a link to our final submission.

During the process of planning, our group at first wanted to choose people who have never used an oven before as our user group. However, this group of people is relatively hard to find so we changed our user group to a more available one.

We also found out that three tasks are very limiting to test the oven as a whole. Many other user interactions are not tested such as turning the dial. Moreover, we were not able to get an accurate result because the sample size is too small. In the future, if we to have a sophisticated usability test, we are going to have more features to test on and definitely a larger sample size.

I like this project because I have learnt how to plan a usability test with many concerns in mind as well as how to document a test efficiently and clearly. Now I am more familiar with usability test by actually doing a modest one by myself. I now know the importance of a usability test as it is essential for engineers to improve the product.