It is difficult for Web designers to step into users' shoes. Affinity Mapping provides insight into user ideas. On a publicly placed magnetic board, patrons clustered library concepts and tasks into meaningful groups. A digital camera recorded the results, which were analyzed and applied during the library's Web redesign. Students entering the UCF Library were invited to help redesign the Libraries web site by constructing Affinity Maps. The participants worked in groups ranging in size from 1 to 4 students who may or may not have known each other before the project. Participating students were provided with magnets pre-printed with terms and categories from the Libraries web pages. Students were instructed to select the terms which they thought should be on the Libraries web site and to organize the selected terms on a magnetic white board. Markers and blank magnets for their own ideas were available. Each completed Affinity Map was recorded with a digital camera (see photos). Students were also invited to complete a short survey and provide comments. Participants were given a candy bar in exchange for their efforts. Faculty participating in an open house at the conclusion of the UCF Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning Summer Workshop were also invited to construct Affinity Maps using categories from the UCF Libraries Web pages.
Information Technologies & Resources
Orlando (Main) Campus
Hoeppner, Athena and Scharf, Meg, "An Affinity For Users" (2004). Faculty Scholarship and Creative Works. 840.