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A Usability and Eye-Tracking Evaluation of the Build-a-Table Web Site

Jennifer Romano and Elizabeth Murphy


Build-a-Table is a free online tool that allows users to find, download and customize tables of data from the Census of Government Employment for 1997, 2002, and 2007. In January 2009, the Statistical Research Division (SRD) evaluated the usability of the Build-a-Table Web site. The testing evaluated the success and satisfaction of nine participants with the site developed by the Public Employment and Payroll Build-a-Table team from the Governments (GOVS) Division. Participants attempted to complete eight pre-determined tasks, developed specifically for this study, on the Web site. Usability testing revealed several usability problems including unclear instructions, lack of clarity in how many items could be chosen to build a table, and unclear functionality of the Main button. Overall, participants were satisfied with the Web site, and pre-determined satisfaction and efficiency goals were met. This report provides a complete summary of the findings of this usability evaluation. Recommendations are provided to improve the usability of the Build-a-Table Web site.

CITATION: Romano, Jennifer and Murphy, Elizabeth. (2009). A Usability and Eye-Tracking Evaluation of the Build-a-Table Web Site. Statistical Research Division Study Series (Survey Methodology #2009-06). U.S. Census Bureau. Available online at <>.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Statistical Research Division

Published online: April 29, 2009
Last revised: April 5, 2009

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Statistical Research Division | (301) 763-3215 (or |   Last Revised: October 08, 2010