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Lean UX Research at Github by Joel Califa

From YouTube recording

What do you want to validate?

  • Write up your Hypotheses, Assumptions, and Knowledge Gaps

Assumptions/Gap Questions from General to Specific Levels → Types of Research

  • High-Level Questions
    • Usually best answered with user interviews
    • High-level questions have less to do with our specific implementation.
    • So other questions that could fit into this category might be, 
      • what are people's current workflows? 
      • How do teams collaborate? 
      • How do people think about GitHub, et cetera?
  • Mid-Level Questions
    • These questions be either specific or not…
    • They have to do with both general workflows and with how we've implemented things.
  • Low-Level Questions
    • Usually a great fit for usability testing with prototypes
    • generally have to do with whether specific things about our designs, interface, or flow, or nomenclature work for our users

  • Create a Research Plan with how you can answer those questions with Interview Questions using one or more methods.
    • Interview Questions are different from your questions in your assumptions/gaps list. These interview questions exist to answer your assumption questions. But how you ask it of course will be different. E.g. “Is this a real problem for you?" is not a good research question to ask in an interview.
  • Select Research Methods
    • User interviews are great for building high-level knowledge, for figuring out a general direction, and for sussing out real answers without biasing people. 
    • Usability studies are great for figuring out whether specific choices  you've made are intuitive.

Shipping =/= finished. It is opportunity to gather more info later.

Vague → Specific

  • To help avoid tainting the information by "newness” of a feature, start more general
  • Listen and Learn first, Show ideas secondarily.

Example Research Plan

  • Note: "Suggested Changes" is the feature name

Tips for User Interviews

< - end of User Interview Tips - >

Tips for Usability Tests

  • 1
  • 2

  • 3
    • Title each step by what they’re supposed to be doing in the test

  • < - end of Usability Test Tips - >

Research Sourcing Tips

Research Moderation Tips

Post-Research Meeting Tip

Main Take Aways:

Research Tips

  • Give people an out.
    • they want to answer and please you. 
    • maybe they haven’t ever done the thing you’re asking about, give them a way to be A or B, not wrong if they don’t do the thing you’re asking about (pushing a Yes)
    • Being able to say "No" more easily means you get truer answers.
  • Have you ever? 
  • What “Kinds of“ keeps the questions open, and then follow up on their answers to learn more
  • Ask same question different ways
    • Ask “What Kinds of Changes” AND “Tell me specific changes you suggested”
    • Ask question from a few different answers (like, with their role in a workflow—in his project a user could be a reviewer and have their code reviewed.) Semantic differences to gather more insights.
  • Make sure you get good data by asking follow up questions
  • Learn as much as you CAN, don't just check boxes of “YES OR NO?!”
  • What’s important is very subjective - free pass into how someone things (what's important to different types of users and why)
    • Vague to Specific: