• joshwilsher

Day 25 & 26 - Semantic Differential & TAP

Semantic Differential

A way to measure attitudes and feelings towards a topic or product. Most commonly used in market research.


What I learned:

Its that thing I do every-time I participate in a Best Buy survey hoping to win a $1000 gift card! (Still hasn't happened, oh man...).



On a more serious note, I learned that while it is a method used many times in marketing it can also reveal the feelings of a participant during user testing or research. It seems like such a simple format to conduct testing but one that can easily yield great insight into an audience and participants. To have a well put together scale, you should include the follow:

  1. Concepts - make sure you have chosen carefully on what you are presenting and make sure that it will conduct an emotional response from participants

  2. Word Pairs - make sure they are bipolar and are consistent on their respective sides. Sometimes opposite words won't work and a more un-common term may need to be used.

  3. Survey scale - Six and seven point scales are most common. Seven is most used as it created a "neutral midpoint". Odd numbers everyone! Make sure to have a midpoint



Think Aloud Protocol

Having a participant verbalize everything that they do or see during a test or research.


What I Learned:

This method helps to know what the participant is doing by them verbalizing it. It seems a little silly to have them talk it out but in fact it has the participant speak about their process and experience. It is helpful when evaluating prototypes and even competitor products. Thinking about this method, it takes out the step of having to interview a participant after their walkthrough. That said, it was surprising to learn that it is a very "hands on" method with the evaluator possibly having to nudge (maybe literally) the participant to keep talking about their experience.


It was also interesting to learn that rather than being focused on the "why" is something happening, it is more geared towards "what" is happening and what is being done. It seems like seeing it from a different angle such as what instead of why can help to see the product in a different way.

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