A Comprehensive Model of Usability Based on Meta-Synthesis

Document Type : Research Paper


1 PhD Student of Industrial Design, Department of Industrial Design, School of Visual Arts, College of Fine Arts, Tehran University, Tehran, Iran.

2 Assistant Professor, Department of Industrial Design, Faculty of Art, Semnan University, Semnan, Iran.


Today, we are witnessing the increasing expansion of websites, applications and computer systems, each of which, according to its characteristics, responds to a series of modern human needs. However, many of these products are rejected by users despite their huge costs. The reason for this is the inability of the product to provide favorable interaction conditions with users and the inability of users to achieve their goals and meet their needs. In other words, the low quality and inefficiency of interactive projects causes their failure. One of the most important factors affecting the quality of systems and products is usability. Usability is one of the main concepts in the field of interactive design and user experience design. This concept is a criterion for evaluating the acceptability of interactive systems and products in the opinion of users. Various models and definitions have been presented for this concept up to now; But each of the usability models have considered distinct components according to different definitions, and based on this, a comprehensive model that covers most of the factors affecting the process of interaction between the user and the product is missing. Identifying the components and factors effective on usability and then providing a comprehensive definition of it, can have a great impact on the accurate and favorable evaluation process of this concept. Based on this, this research has been done with the aim of providing a comprehensive view of the concept of usability. In line with the mentioned goal, the following questions were formulated:
What components do the existing and presented models of usability have? In the presented models, how is the relationship between the concepts and usability components, and how much do they overlap? How can usability models be integrated in the form of a comprehensive model and what characteristics will this model have?
For this purpose, the provided usability models were extracted from the research literature and their common and distinctive aspects were examined using the qualitative meta-synthesis method in order to identify all the factors affecting the interaction process. Then, by synthesizing the related components, the core components of the usability model were determined. The result of this process is a comprehensive conceptual model that displays usability components in relation to the user and the product, as well as the stages of the interaction process. According to this model, the concept of usability is not a feature unique to systems or products, but is defined as a feature of the process of interaction between a specific user and a specific system or product in a specific field of use. This model can be used to design various interactive systems and products. Also, can be used to evaluate the usability of different products, services and systems and can be a basis for designing a questionnaire or checklist for usability evaluation. The effect of the context of use on usability was not considered in this research and it can be one of the concerns of future researches.


Main Subjects

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