Frequently Asked Questions
What's IncluCity Calgary?
IncluCity Calgary provides opportunities for diverse and often under-represented residents to weigh in on the products, processes and services that impact them. IncluCity Calgary believes that if a design doesn’t work for someone, it doesn’t work for everyone. You can learn about our services in the information packet provided or on our website (www.inclucitycalgary.ca).
What is Usability Testing?
Usability testing is a research method that helps uncover problems and opportunities in a product so that it is more user-friendly. Testers, also called test participants, will be on a video call or in a room with a test facilitator who will ask you to complete a series of tasks with a product (app, webpage, or form) while an observer takes notes and records the tester's feedback. The client organization will then use all the data and findings from the testing sessions to consider and implement changes to help improve the product or service.
Who’s eligible to sign up as a tester?
Everyone! We’d like to hear from everyone and make sure that we can reach underrepresented voices who have historically not been involved in this process before. IncluCity will reach out to testers who signed up based on the target users for each test. For example, if we’re testing a service designed specifically for women or for people over the age of 65, then we’ll look for diversity within those groups.
Why do I need to give all of this information in the registration process?
The registration form will have questions asking about your age, ethnicity, education and more to help us ensure that we are being representative in each of these categories when selecting for test participants. These answers are used strictly for research purposes.
Why do I need to fill out another demographic survey? Didn't I already submit one?
Be prepared to fill out a demographic survey for each testing opportunity, even after completing the main registration form for the following reasons: Each test may require slightly different information based on the criteria, Each test will have different conditions, privacy policies and terms which you should be aware of when registering. We ask for your consent in each new testing opportunity. We want to ensure we continue to have a representative group of testers, and; Ensure that the information you provided is up-to-date
Why was I not selected for the user tests after I filled out a registration form?
Thank you for your interest in becoming a tester with IncluCity! Filling out our registration form is the first step, but it doesn't guarantee a spot in a particular test. Don't worry, it's not about you! Let's break down how this works: How do we choose our testers? Our goal is to gather a wide array of perspectives. The selection process depends on the answers you provided during registration and the information we initially collected when you expressed interest in joining us. Every tech service, product, or tool we test might have unique criteria, so we aim to assemble a group that best matches that particular study. What kind of diversity do we aim for in our tester groups? For each user test, we're aiming for a tapestry of experiences and backgrounds, including but not limited to: - Sex and Gender Identity - Various ethnic & cultural backgrounds - Newcomers - BIPOC - Individuals with diverse ethnographic upbringings - Those who speak English as a second or Nth language - Different age groups - A spectrum of self-reported digital literacy skills - People of all abilities
How much are testers paid?
We advocate for testers to be paid around $50 per hour. Prices vary depending on the client’s needs and the duration of the testing session. Testers who sign-up will be informed of the rate before each test and can decide if they still want to take part. IncluCity will reach out to testers who signed up based on the target users for each test. For example, if we’re testing a service designed specifically for women or for people over the age of 65, then we’ll look for diversity within those groups.
What do tests look like?
Testing sessions are either held in-person or online. In a moderated test, our most common type of test, the Test facilitator will guide you through the tasks and instructions. The sessions are recorded so that we can refer back to your feedback and make the most of each session.
What do you usually test?
We work with clients who want to improve their technology for users, in an inclusive way. Clients may range from socially-geared startups or companies that are trying to make the world a better place, to those that are not sure where to start when making policies around diversity, equity and inclusion. Another example is a client creating a software tool for a large population and wants to ensure everyone can access and use it without barriers or difficulties.
Do I need to know anything about usability testing or the product I'll be testing?
Thankfully, there's no prior knowledge required to participate in usability testing. This isn't your typical school test; we want to test the product, not your performance. Ideally, testers should not have any previous experience with the product we are testing to ensure that we capture an authentic initial experience and avoid bias.
What if I don't have the proper technology required for the session or can't find an available time?
Virtual testing will work with any laptop or desktop computer that has a working webcam and microphone so we can see and hear you on the video call, preferably in a quiet room. We can provide assistance to help you book your testing session. If we can't find a solution to your tech concern, we will keep you updated for future in-person testing opportunities. The test facilitator will walk you through the testing process when you join the Google Meet video call for virtual testing sessions.
I confirmed a time for a test, now how do I get ready for the test?
There is no need to worry. Here are some steps to best prepare: Set up your computer in a quiet room with reduced background noise. Make sure you have a working microphone and webcam. Find the Google Meet invitation in your email inbox or calendar. Click on the Google Meet link. Join the call a few minutes early if you want to ensure everything works well. Do one last bathroom and technology check to prevent the testing session from being disrupted. The test facilitator will introduce themselves, walk you through the testing process, and help answer any questions you might have when you join the Google Meet video call. If you have any questions or need help setting up or using Google Meet, feel free to contact the project coordinator (contact info in your inbox) to help resolve any issues.
What else should I expect on the test day?
If you’re doing a virtual test, you should expect two to three other people on the video call and the below general process: Attendees: The facilitator will take the lead and help you get acquainted with the tech product, ask you to complete tasks, and get your feedback while you're completing a task. The notetaker will write down any notable comments or feedback you give in the background. Their camera and microphone will be off. Additionally, there could be an observing third person who is either a representative from the client organization or from the IncluCity Calgary team. Their camera and microphone will be off. General process: Only the tester (you) and the facilitator will have their cameras and microphones turned on throughout the test. If a task is notably frustrating to complete, do not panic, as this means we have identified a usability flaw; consider this a good thing in usability testing! After the call, we will compile and synthesize the feedback from all testers into a final assessment (void of any personal information) which will be forwarded to the client organization to make changes where needed. After the test, you’ll be sent an e-transfer of your remuneration to the email address you provided within 10 business days of your test. You will receive a feedback form after the session, which you can use to give feedback on your testing session and tell us how we can make the experience more pleasant.
What happens next?
If you've opted to receive notifications for future tests, you're still in the loop! We'll reach out when more testing opportunities match your profile. And hey, we're always looking to improve. If you've got thoughts on our tester registration process, we'd love to hear them. Reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org We appreciate your understanding and patience. Thanks for being part of our community!