Accessible Usability Scale (AUS)


accessible usability testing


The quantitative usability testing and UX research field is filled with psychometrics that measure the data beyond subjective qualities of users via qualitative means. In fact, our platform provides all the psychometrics that design and research teams could ever want, but we noticed the industry as a whole was missing a bit of accessibility considerations.

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The Accessible usability scale (AUS)

The Accessible Usability Scale (AUS) was developed by Fable to fill-in the blanks for a lack of usability testing geared towards people with accessibility concerns. As the co-founder says, "I remember sharing the idea of what we were building and being asked a question that I didn’t know the answer to, 'Are you helping with accessibility or usability for people with disabilities?'" And thus, the AUS was born.

The 10 statements:

  • I would like to use this website frequently, if I had a reason to.

  • I found the website unnecessarily complex.

  • I thought the website was easy to use.

  • I think that I would need the support of another person to use all of the features of this website.

  • I found the various functions of the website made sense and were compatible with my technology.

  • I thought there was too much inconsistency in how this website worked.

  • I would imagine that most people with my assistive technology would learn to use this website quickly.

  • I found the website very cumbersome or awkward to use.

  • I felt very confident using the website.

  • I needed to familiarize myself with the website before I could use it effectively.

Users mark their answers to the 10 items above on a 5-point Likert scale, with 5 meaning “Strongly agree” and 1 meaning “Strongly disagree.”

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How does AUS differ from other psychometrics?

Put simply, AUS measures how accessible designs by new business, teams, or companies are. We utilized this psychometric with our. Accessiblity in the UX sphere should be a development-stage consideration, and with the AUS, now it can be without needing extra software or a bigger budget.

Here's a list of the other psychometrics on the Trymata platform and why AUS might be a better alternative depending on your situation.

The System Usability Scale is the most widespread measurement in UX and usability testing, and for good reason. SUS will give you the topline rating of your product’s usability, but lacks in determining the credibility and desirability of your design and serves as the basis for AUS.

The ALFQ is a TryMyUI original psychometric developed to predict the success of a product (both web and mobile-based) based on adoption likelihood. The ALFQ consists of 16 post-test survey prompts that calculate 4 crucial metrics to predict the success of fledgling products. Similar to the AUS in that this is meant for teams early in the product stage, but lacks a couple of crucial accessibility elements.

The Post-Study System Usability Questionnaire is great for testing the overall quality of information in addition to usability, but like the SUS, suffers from the same problems in demonstrating desirability.

Jeff Sauro’s Standardized User Experience Percentile Rank Questionnaire and our ALFQ are sister psychometrics in their intentionality. Both measure more than just usability, tapping into the heart of the user’s more abstract thoughts of a product such as trust and credibility.

One notable difference is the development stage: SUPR-Q is best utilized for established companies that users are familiar with, and whose designs have already been through rounds of SUS and/or PSSUQ testing. Meanwhile, AUS is built for UX and design teams looking to primarily test their accessibility. Both SUPR-Q and AUS should be tested at some point in a product's lifecycle, but AUS should always come before or with SUPR-Q.

The Survey Respondent Scale is the brainchild of a partnership between TryMyUI, MeasuringU, and QuestionPro to address the cognitive stress and fatigue of survey responses on testers. SRS is an extremely specialized metric that is meant more for marketing than usability.

When should I use AUS?

It might be most helpful to ask yourself, “where is my product and brand in the timeline of development and in the context of my industry?

The AUS is the perfect psychometric tool for indicating how accessible your design is. It takes the best pieces of the SUS psychometric and adds to it, creating a model that teams can base their roadmap and design decisions on.

If you and your team are satisfied with your untested design, but also aren’t sure if the designs are accessible, running AUS is absolutely for you.

AUS can also be great to use in tandem with A/B Testing, for both websites and mobile apps!

Here are some success stories from the Blockstack partnership program:



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