Marieke works as a PhD student at the university of Twente. Her PhD-project is: Evaluation of municipal websites: Development and validation of expert-focused and user-focused evaluation methods. She is member of the NESCoR Dissertation Award Jury
One of Mrieke’s research projects is the project ‘Heuristics and expert evaluation of municipal websites’. Heuristic evaluation is a popular method for website evaluation among website designers and communication professionals. Heuristics are lists with guidelines regarding web design, which can either be used to design or to evaluate a website. Heuristics can pertain to very different aspects of websites, such as the navigation, lay-out and color use, but also to usability, accessibility and information quality. However, despite their popularity, few studies have focused on the use and the effects of these heuristics. This project will attempt to shed more light on these issues.
Three research questions will be answered in this project:
• What do web heuristics look like?
• How do heuristics function as an aid in expert-focused web evaluation?
• What is the added value of experts using heuristics compared to unguided expert evaluation?
The first question will be answered by a content analysis of a large corpus of web heuristics. To answer the second question, an explorative study will examine how experts analyze websites and the role heuristics play in this process. In two subsequent experiments aimed at answering questions two and three, we will compare different variants of heuristics to each other and to unguided expert evaluation, to see whether there are differences in the number and type of problem detections. To conclude the project, the results of the expert evaluation will be compared to the results of user-focused evaluation methods. Data from the PhD project ‘User-focused evaluation methods for municipal websites’, performed by drs. S.K. Elling (UU), will be used for this comparison.
Another project is ‘Evaluation of municipal websites’ is financed by NWO and is a cooperation between the University of Twente and Utrecht University. Dr. M.D.T. de Jong (UT) and dr. L.R. Lentz (UU) supervise the project.
Communication design 2 (245030)
Communication design 3 (246021)