Usability evaluation of an online cotton media resource guide
Cooper, Kimberly M.
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This study used a survey research design to evaluate the effectiveness, efficiency, satisfaction, credibility, and therefore, the overall usability of the CottonLink media resource Web site as determined by members of the Texas Plains region associated press medium. The response rate reached 54.2% with a total of 39 completed online surveys. The researcher-designed instrument achieved acceptable reliability scores for each portion of usability: effectiveness, .95; efficiency, .98; satisfaction, .92; credibility, .92; and overall usability, .97. Respondents found the Web site to be effective, efficient, satisfying, credible, and usable. Researchers also looked at Internet use, perceptions of agriculture, newsgathering techniques, and demographics to determine if there were significant relationships with usability. Consistent with Internet use trends, younger audiences found the site more effective, efficient, and usable. Significant relationships were also found with five statements related to agriculture. Findings were relevant for both researchers and practitioners. Future research should: (a) evaluate terminology related to usability, (b) test actual agriculture knowledge and experience, (c) analyze usability qualitatively, and (d) replicate this study with a larger population. Recommended practices for practitioners include: (a) continually developing usable educational resources for media members, (b) extending the media resource guides for additional commodities and states, (c) holding training workshops for both media and industry representatives.