Our May 2021, invited essay is “The Best of Times for UX Research, the Worst of Times for Usability Research?” by Jason Buhle. He describes how the landscape of usability and UX research has been changing and provides recommendations for increasing the academic and professional standing of usability research.
In addition to the essay, this issue includes three methodological research papers: one on persona development, one on a guideline-based inspection method, and one summarizing the standardized usability questionnaires currently available to UX researchers and practitioners.
The first article is “Creating Personas from Design Ethnography and Grounded Theory,” by P. J. White and Frank Devitt. They describe a method and associated case study for persona creation in three phases: Post fieldwork data management, Coding and grounded theory, and Data reduction and data display.
The second article is “GCS: A Quick and Dirty Guideline Compliance Scale,” by Lukas Lamm and Christian Wolff. They investigated the development of compliance scales for a guideline-based inspection method, comparing problem discovery and experiential ratings between guideline reviews and conventional usability testing in an automotive case study.
In the third article, “A Review of Post-Study and Post-Task Subjective Questionnaires to Guide Assessment of System Usability,” Andrew Hodrien and Terrence Fernando summarize the standard usability questionnaires that are available for use, using this information to guide selection of which are the best to use in different research contexts.