Publications & Resources

Using Cluster Analysis to Extend Usability Testing to Instructional Content

May 2012

Deirdre S. Kerr and Gregory K. W. K. Chung

Commercial video games undergo usability studies to determine the degree to which the player is able to learn, control, and understand the game. Usability studies allow game designers to improve their games before they are released to the public. If usability studies could be expanded to include information about the presentation of the instructional content, they could help improve educational video games. In this study, cluster analysis was used to identify usability information from the log files from an educational video game called Save Patch. Cluster analysis was able to pinpoint specific levels in the game that could be improved as well as identify specific components of the level design under which certain errors were likely to occur, culminating in specific recommendations to improve the game in ways likely to increase learning.

Kerr, D., & Chung, G. K. W. K. (2012). Using cluster analysis to extend usability testing to instructional content (CRESST Report 816). Los Angeles: University of California, Los Angeles, National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards, and Student Testing (CRESST).