WTA Usability Research

Improve the WTA website based on usability testing insights

Summary: I worked in a team to conduct usability testings on various features of the Washington Trails Association website. We gave design recommendations based on insights gathered from the usability research sessions.

WTA Logo

Washington Trail Association (WTA) is an organization that aims to preserve, enhance, and promote hiking opportunities in the Washington state. Its website provides information about hikes, volunteer trail maintenance opportunities, and WTA facts.

My team identified test objectives through heuristic evaluation. We then tested the product on people with various backgrounds. During this project, I contributed heuristic evaluation, participants recruitment, research facilitation, data collection, and data analysis.

selected slide of the final presentation
selected slide of the final presentation
selected slide of the final presentation
selected slide of the final presentation
selected slide of the final presentation

Future Consideration

Clarify experience level and geographical locations

Many study participants were unsure how to categorize their hiking experience level. If my group and I were to repeat our project, we would make it more clear on hiking criteria (e.g. 0–3 hikes in the past year represent beginner level, etc.).

Some of them also found “find a hike within your experience level and region” task difficult because they were unfamiliar with geographical locations. In future, I will give examples of what cities belong to which regions within the state.


The next time I conduct a test involving recordings, I will make sure that there is enough storage to save those recording files.

Final Thoughts

Usability research is a great way to test the effectiveness of design. I learned that it is important to not only gather the quantitative data from questionnaires but also observe people’s behaviors to capture their latent reactions to the product/services being tested.

Date: September — December 2016

Credits: Maria Buan, Sol Choi, Tuyen Truong

Saper Vedere

Personal journal of learning “how to see” the world

Medium is an open platform where 170 million readers come to find insightful and dynamic thinking. Here, expert and undiscovered voices alike dive into the heart of any topic and bring new ideas to the surface. Learn more

Follow the writers, publications, and topics that matter to you, and you’ll see them on your homepage and in your inbox. Explore

If you have a story to tell, knowledge to share, or a perspective to offer — welcome home. It’s easy and free to post your thinking on any topic. Write on Medium

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store