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ERIC Number: EJ1048085
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Oct
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 20
ISSN: ISSN-2158-0502
Usability Engineering Can Change Our Thinking
Flowers, Jim
Technology and Engineering Teacher, v74 n2 p18-22 Oct 2014
Technology and engineering education and its predecessors have a long history of being effective programs for helping students learn about technology and technological design. Students are often asked to solve design challenges, develop product ideas, and create models or prototypes for products. They do not often set up tests with product users to get more information about how to make a product's interface more user-friendly. This can be a great learning experience where students not only see how people would use a device, but where they also are asked to think like end users, and to think like usability engineers. It can change their entire approach to product design. The purpose of this article is to explore how usability engineering, and usability testing in particular, can be effective in technology and engineering education, though this might entail a change in some common ways of thought, leading to a greater toolbox of techniques and more understanding of product users. This article expands on some ideas offered a decade ago in suggesting that "usability testing is a terrific way for secondary and post-secondary technology students to critically analyze products" (Flowers, 2005, p. 17).
International Technology and Engineering Educators Association. 1914 Association Drive Suite 201, Reston, VA 20191-1539. Tel: 703-860-2100; Fax: 703-860-0353; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A