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Fri, 10 Feb 2006 06:53:57 -0500
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The UAT process Bill describes is typical of what I've seen elsewhere.  
However, in my current organization, different groups are performing UAT 
different ways, often including the actual users.

Bill Killam wrote:

>I was involved with UAT for many years.  UATing is typically a script based
>demonstration of the presence of functionality and provides almost no data
>on usability.  It's a through form of system testing with all combinations
>of options tested with defend steps and expected results written down.  The
>procedures (scripts) are agreed to before hand and it's very difficult to
>claim any issue if the expected result is not obtained when the procedure is
>followed.  The tests are often even automated.  So, the only user in user
>acceptance testing is that the test is witnessed by users or a
>representative of the users.  .  The closest I've seen is when a user is
>allowed to try to follow the script and produce the results, but that's a
>real stretch to think of this as usability testing.  
>
>Bill
>-------------------------------------------------------
>Bill Killam, MA CHFP
>President, User-Centered Design, Inc.
>20548 Deerwatch Place
>Ashburn, VA 20147
>email: [log in to unmask]
>Work/Fax: (703) 729-0998
>Mobile: (703) 626-6318
>Web: www.user-centereddesign.com
>
>
>-----Original Message-----
>From: ACM SIGCHI WWW Human Factors (Open Discussion)
>[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Leslie
>Sent: Wednesday, February 08, 2006 7:54 AM
>To: [log in to unmask]
>Subject: User Acceptance Tests (UAT) as inroads for Usability Engineering
>
>Has anyone been able to get usability engineering into a software 
>development process by becoming involved in the User Acceptance Testing? 
>
>Many web applications are developed in my company, which is a large 
>financial corporation.  There is no requirement in our tightly 
>controlled development process for usability engineering.  Our 
>developers were recently overburdened by new Sarbanes Oxley 
>requirements; they are in no mood for additional requirements like 
>usability testing.
>
>However, applications are required to undergo a User Acceptance Test 
>(UAT) before being deployed.  Currently the UAT process does not mention 
>user experience or usability, but it does suggest "user-friendliness" as 
>one of the criteria users should assess.
>
>If you seen usability engineering added to a software development 
>process via the User Acceptance Testing, please send me your lessons 
>learned & I shall summarize for our list.
>
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