While browsing through the questions in UX.SE, I noticed that that a lot of answers to questions don't have links to actual tests/studies. According to this answer that's OK, and we shouldn't do anything to stop it.
However, there was one answer to that question that said something about a lack of good studies to use as reference for these questions. I'm not sure how true that is, but it got me thinking. It would be interesting if the UX.SE community got together and ran a few UX studies and tests of our own, preferably to provide real data to answer a popular question on UX.SE.
UPDATE: Here is a more detailed proposal (feel free to comment):
- Every week (or every two weeks, or every month, depending on how many people are interested), a question on the UX meta would be created asking people to submit proposals for possible UX studies that we could run. The proposals would detail what data the studies would collect, how that data would be collected, and why it would be useful. The person who submitted the proposal would be responsible for managing the entire study, though he or she could get other people to help.
- The proposal with the most up votes will be selected to be used as our study of the week (or whatever time interval we decide on).
- Once the study has been completed, we will post the results on a blog (see this post)
An example proposal of a possible UX study:
Please Note: This is just a draft of an example proposal.
Are links with images more likely to be clicked on?
Based off of this question (please read it so you will understand the proposal): Are links with images more likely to be clicked on?
- This test would consist of three webpages: one with a link with a small thumbnail (as described in the question), one with the link described in the above, but with a large thumbnail; and one with the same link described above, only without the thumbnail.
- The data would show whether having a thumbnail improves click through rates, and whether the size of the thumbnail matters.
This is the more old proposal: (only it's not much of a proposal)
If people are interested, then what we need to do is:
- We need to know how we are going to run these studies. Ideally, then should let anyone do them from a computer at home, so that everybody can participate (unfortunately, that means no fancy equipment).
- We are going to need to decide who is going to make, or program, the studies. Perhaps alternate every week?
- Decide if we are going to do studies to answer popular questions (on UX.SE), or do studies to find out random statistics.
- If we are going to do studies to answer popular questions, we need to decide which questions we are going to answer.
- We are going to need a chatroom or some other sort of hq (I'll create it once I know people are interested).
- I was thinking that we would publish the studies as answered to popular questions, but if we decide to just do studies about random but interesting UX related things, then that wont work. We could use a blog (see this answer on the stack overflow meta).
- If we are going to studies to answer popular questions (on UX.SE), then a blog might still be a cool "supplementary" publishing platform.
Let me know what you think :) Questions and Comments are welcome.