Pre-test “setup” and wrap-up interview

As I am preparing for the final usability test, I put together a pre-test script and a wrap-up interview that will help me provide some necessary details to each participant, and also get their feedback. In my pre-test script I will talk about usability testing and GNOME, and afterwards I will be doing the short post-test interview on the overall experience of the testing process, and using GNOME.

Test intro:
Thank you for coming today!

Just like Windows is a desktop system and MacOS is a desktop system, GNOME is a free software desktop system. And you’ll be doing a few tasks using GNOME and a few GNOME applications. I’ll give you the tasks one at a time. We aren’t “testing” you. The test is all about the software. If you have problems with part of the test, that’s okay; that’s exactly what we are trying to find. So don’t feel embarrassed if you have problems doing something and please do not feel pressured by time or anything else. f you can’t figure something out, that is perfectly okay and will still provide us with useful information for the test.  If you have any questions about the tasks I will try to answer them, but the answers and feedback should come directly from you as much as possible so I will avoid anything that would lead you to a specific choice.  Also, I’m going to take notes while you’re doing these tasks. It will help me if you talk out loud when you are doing something, so I can take notes. So if you’re looking for a Print button, just say “I’m looking for a Print button.” And move the mouse to wherever you are looking on the screen, so I can see where you’re looking. It would also be very helpful for me to do a screen-record of the testing process, so that I can go back to that later during my analysis.

Follow-up Questions:

  • What is your overall impression of GNOME?
  • Do you feel familiar with the interface in general?
  • Is there anything about the test that was confusing or bothered you?
  • Which tasks made you feel the most comfortable/uncomfortable?
  • Is there anything else you would like to say about the test?


I might also ask some questions on a specific task if I need more information:

  • It looked like you had problems doing __ in the test; what were you looking for, or what would have made that more obvious?
  • What were your expectations regarding … ?
  • Why did you choose this method for …?

Thank you very much for accepting my invitation for this usability test, and for your help on improving GNOME!


As I mentioned earlier I am planning to do a “screencast” record of the testing process, so that I can go back to that later during my analysis. If you have any suggestions on what software to use for that, please let me know in the comments!


4 thoughts on “Pre-test “setup” and wrap-up interview

  1. Maybe the Shell’s built in recorder could work for recording, as long as you set the gconf key to do unlimited length. The upside of that is that you won’t have any app visible during the test, so it’s almost disruptionless.


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