Methods for online studies

Online studies are done via Internet. Participants can be anonymous people from all over the world, or by invitation only. Although it may be possible to run various kinds of user studies online, this list includes those that are relatively easy to do online.

Aesthetics scale

Developed by Lavie and Tractinsky; aesthetic quality in particular of websites. They conducted four studies in order to develop a measurement instrument of perceived web site aesthetics. Using exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses they found that users' perceptions consist of two main dimensions, which were termed "classical aesthetics" and "expressive aesthetics".

Affect Grid

Affect Grid is a scale designed as a quick means of assessing affect along the dimensions of pleasure-displeasure and arousal-sleepiness.

Attrak-Work questionnaire

Questionnaire for evaluating UX of mobile news journalism systes. Based on AttrakDiff but elaborated for the context.


Assess the user's feelings about the system with a questionnaire. In AttrakDiff questionnaire, both hedonic and pragmatic dimensions of UX are studied with semantic differentials.


Emocards provide a non-verbal method for users to self-report their emotions. Flash cards or single sheet of a paper.


Emotional responses elicited by consumer products are difficult to verbalize because their nature is subtle (low intensity) and often miemotional response at the same time). As a result, these emotions are difficult to measure with verbal questionnaires. Instead of relying on the use of words, respondents can report their emotions with the use of cartoon drawings of facial expressions. The Emofaces can be used in internet surveys, formal interviews, and in qualitative interviews.

Emotion Cards

Provide a way for users to quickly document emotions at a specific moment

Emotion Sampling Device (ESD)

Emotion Sampling Device is a series of questions yielding to the emotion the user is experiencing as the result of an event. It is based on Cognitive Appraisal Theory (CAT) and Emotional Appraisal System. It asks about the causes of the emotion, rather than about the emotion itself, to avoid the typical problems of verbal assessment of emotions.

Geneva Appraisal Questionnaire

The Geneva Appraisal Questionnaire (GAQ) can be used to assess, as much as is possible through recall and verbal report, the results of an individual's appraisal process in the case of a specific emotional episode (as based on Scherer's Component Process Model of Emotion). The files available for download contain the current English, French, and German versions (and information on utilization).
This is a tool that can be used to describe emotional experiences (i.e. not a description as such). Tool is available in English, French and German

Geneva Emotion Wheel

Based on Scherer's Component Process Model, the Geneva Emotion Research Group has developed this new instrument to obtain self-report of felt emotions elicited by events or objects.

Hedonic Utility scale (HED/UT)

The HED/UT is developed to both address hedonic aspects of product/website interaction and the utitility and usability aspects. HED/UT is an attitude measure from the consumer behaviour literature, and consists of 12 items measuring hedonic value, and 12 items measuring utilitarian value of a service or concept.

Human Computer trust

The Human Computer Trust scale is a psychometric instrument specifically designed to measure human-computer. Both cognitive and affective components of trust are measured; the affective components are the strongest indicators of trust.

Intrinsic motivation inventory (IMI)

The Intrinsic Motivation Inventory (IMI) is a multidimensional measurement device intended to assess participants' subjective experience related to a target activity in laboratory experiments. It has been used in several experiments related to intrinsic motivation and self-regulation (see weblink for references).

Long term diary study

Study UX over time.

Mental effort

Zijlstra's mental effort scale is an easy and quick to use scale that helps to determine how much (perceived) mental effort was required to complete a task; depending on the setting, product and task, and in combination with other measures, this will help in getting a clearer picture of the overall quality of a product or service - too much mental effort will be stressful, and scary, too little mental effort will be boring....


General Tests of Emotion or Affect for Evaluating Consumer Reactions to Products and Services, Including User Interface.

Paired comparison

Very easy to use technique to rank order stimuli (products) with respect to some quality (e.g. enjoyment); also easy to do for children; goes back to early (1920's) test and scale development techniques; paired comparison data can be transformed in ordering stimuli.

Positive and Negative Affect Scale (PANAS)

The Positive Affect Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS) is a psychometric scale developed to measure the largely independent constructs of positive and negative affect both as states and traits. Positive and negative affect have been shown to relate to other personality states and traits, such as anxiety. PANAS was originally developed for more clinical settings, but is also used now in evaluation studies in which moods of users might be affected (e.g. studies around effects of lighting, of entertainment content, etc).


Emotional responses elicited by consumer products might be difficult to verbalize because their nature is subtle (low intensity) and often mixed (i.e. more than one emotional response at the same time). So, emotional responses to products might be difficult to measure with verbal questionnaires. Instead of relying on the use of words, respondents can report their emotions with the use of expressive cartoon animations. In PrEmo, 14 emotions are portrayed by an animation of dynamic facial, bodily, and vocal expressions.

Product Attachment Scale

Consumer-product attachment is defined as the strength of the emotional bond a person experiences to a product during ownership. People can experience strong or weak emotional bonds to their products. Therefore, the degree of attachment can vary. To investigate in what way designers can best stimulate the emotional bonding to a product, the degree of product attachment needs to be quantified. The Product Attachment scale provides a quantitative measure of the strength of the emotional bond a person experiences to a product during ownership.

Product Experience Tracker

"Immediately" after real-world product use, a survey is sent to a subset of customers. The survey captures a number of self-stated experiential metrics: likelihood-to-recommend, satisfaction, occurrence(?) of product, etc. By periodically running this survey, we can observe how changes in the (web-based) product affect the customer experience.

Product Personality Assignment

Participants are given a selection of product designs and a questionnaire of different personalities that they assign to designs (list of Briggs-Myers, e.g. "sensible", "friendly"). They are also asked about the reasons for the selections.

QSA GQM questionnaires

Based on the fact the motivation is acknowledged to be one of the several aspects of UX, the QSA-GQM technique measures the intrinsic motivation of people about knowledge acquisition.

Reaction checklists

After using the evaluated system, the participant is given a list of possible reactions to it, e.g. “the phone feels good in the hand”, “I feel proud when others see me with the phone”.
The method is most suitable for collecting initial responses to a product.


Satisfaction is a part of classic definition of usability since a long time. SUMI (Software Usability Measurement Inventory) has been developed to provide an authoritative, standardised measurement of user satisfaction with software. It can be used for the evaluation and comparison of products (or versions of a product) and to set and track verifiable targets regarding satisfaction. SUMI is a classical Likert-type measure of attitude toward a software package. The questionnaire comprises five subscales: efficiency, affect, helpfulness, control and learnability. SUMI analysis also provides a “global” satisfaction score.

Self Assessment Manikin (SAM)

SAM is an emotion assessment tool that uses graphic scales, depicting cartoon characters expressing three emotion elements: pleasure, arousal and dominance. SAM has been used often in evaluations of advertisements, and increasingly also in evaluations of products. SAM is based on the PAD emotion model of Mehrabian.

Semi-structured experience interview

Face to face or online interview. Ask people what they think, feel, experience

Sentence Completion

After using a system, a participant is handed a set of beginnings of sentences that she then completes. The beginnings of the sentences trigger the user think the experiential aspects of product use, e.g."When I use this product, I feel myself…", or "The appearance of this product is…"

ServUX questionnaire

A modular questionnaire for evaluating Service User eXperience (ServUX). The questionnaire is constructed of modules, each addressing distinct aspects of ServUX: cross-platform and crossmedial interaction, user-driven service composition, social communication and construction, dynamic content and functionality, contextual computing, and other ServUX-related issues such as trust and privacy.


UTAUT is based on Technology Acceptance Model (TAM), but addressing some of TAM's shortcomings; includes now also more or less affective aspects

UX Expert evaluation

UX experts use their expertise of users and UX theories to evaluate UX of a system.

WAMMI (Website Analysis and Measurement Inventory)

To help you accomplish your Web goals, WAMMI (1) Measures user experience of your website based on visitors reactions using a 20 item-questionnaire; (2) Benchmarks your website relative to other websites in our international standardized database; (3) Generates objective data for your management in an easy-to-read hypertext report; (4) Analyses qualitative comments and reactions to your website from visitors; (5) Interprets quantitative and qualitative data to determine what to improve and how much to invest.


iScale is a survey tool for the retrospective elicitation of longitudinal user experience data.