• Usability evaluation of an NHS library web site

      Ebenezer, Catherine; Walton, Graham (Blackwell Publishing, 2003-09)
      Objectives: To carry out a usability evaluation of the recently launched South London and Maudsley NHS Trust library website. Methods: A variety of standard methodologies were employed; content and design evaluation of selected comparable sites; focus groups; a questionnaire survey of library and Web development staff; heuristic evaluation; observation testing; card sorting/cluster analysis, and label intuitiveness/category membership testing. All participants were staff of or providers of services to the trust. Demographic information was recorded for each participant. Results: Test participants' overall responses to the site were enthusiastic and favourable, indicating the scope and and content of the site to be broadly appropriate to the user group. Testers made numerous suggestions for new content. Usability problems were discovered in two main areas: in the organisation of the site, and in the terminology used to refer to information services and sources. Based on test results, proposals for a revised menu structure, improved accessibility, and changes to the terminology used within the site are presented. Conclusion: Usability evaluation methods, appropriately scaled, can be advantageously applied to NHS library web sites by an individual web editor working alone.