Archive for March, 2009

So, what does a learning research team do exactly?

Our team is responsible for much of the research used in the Learning Resources Group. Our colleagues in Learning Resources not only develop learning content for all Adobe products, but also administrate the communities, and maintain the navigation and search mechanisms involved in the learning experience on Adobe.com. They seek out and share community-created content, support the community moderators who help manage community participation, and produce the product Help. In order to do this effectively, they conduct extensive investigations into the needs and preferences of the Adobe community.
The research team’s work boils down to three kinds:
Summative – we are the scorekeepers for the Learning Resources group. We’re especially interested in user success, user contributions (comments that add value to our learning resources), search success metrics (abandonment, clickthrough, and search modification), and calls to the Support call center.
Formative – we compile data that our colleagues, Adobe’s corps of content leads, can use to improve the above scores. For example, we report open-ended survey responses, contributions by product, search success by product and query, and calls by call category. We also work with them on studies of user behavior, to find out exactly what gets in users’ way when they are trying to learn Adobe software.
Decision-support – we help our colleagues articulate their design decisions, questions whose answers will inform those decisions, and strategies for answering those questions.
Going forward, we’ll write more about each aspect of the work, and report on some of our findings.