Accurate, Focused Research on Law, Technology and Knowledge Discovery Since 2002

The User Experience of Logging In: An Introduction

Stephen Francoeur – User Experience Librarian, Associate Professor, Baruch College via his blog – Beating the Bounds: “I’m trying to work through some ideas pinging around in my brain about how to improve the user experience of logging in to library services and resources at a college or university. I’ve been thinking of a series of posts to help me pull together a bunch of ideas, insights, and quandaries around the problems users encounter as they try to access library stuff online. I’m hoping this initial post will get me started in writing all the posts I have in mind. As much as possible, I’m trying to develop a wide perspective on the problem. As someone who does UX research and UX design at my library, I’ve found it essential to understand all the systems at play before trying to do any design work. If I don’t have a moderately informed understanding of how our services and resources interconnect with each other and with the ICTs (information and communication technologies) that our users are working with, my design efforts may miss some key component. In other words, the more you know about the systems and services, the better your designs can be. And I’d argue that every single thing we in libraries design must be perpetually improved and tweaked. No design is perfect. Furthermore, not only is technology ever changing, but society’s values and norms that affect our use of those ICTs are also evolving regularly, a socio-technical system of mutual shaping. As someone who also helps manage e-resources and does troubleshooting at least several times a week to help someone who is reporting that they “can’t log in” to something, I’ve built up some standard questions to ask the user. I may not be a master of all the technologies at work behind the scenes, but I’ve learned enough to make reasonable guesses about what has gone wrong and ask the user questions that help narrow down the list of possible causes. This post is my attempt to categorize the places where problems arise and detail some specific issues: the status of the user, the user’s device, the library’s systems and resources, and a vendor’s systems or resources…”

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.