Retrospective Testing


Applicable stages: design, code, test, and deployment.
Personnel needed for the evaluation:
Usability experts: 1
Software developers: 0
Users: 4
Usability issues covered:
Can be conducted remotely: No Can obtain quantitative data: Yes


If a videotape has been made of a usability test session, the tester(s) can collect more information by reviewing the videotape together with the user participants and asking them questions regarding their behavior during the test. So this technique should be used along with other techniques, especially those where the interaction between the testers and the participants is restricted. But using this technique means that each test takes at least twice as long. Another obvious requirement for using this technique is that the user's interaction with the computer needs to be recorded and replayed.
Review the recording of the usability test session with the test user. Ask the test user questions and let the test user describe what he/she is doing and why.

  1. J. Nielsen "Usability Engineering", pp.198-199, Academic Press, 1993.