Document Library

Top UX Research books

100 things every designer needs to know about peopleSusan Weinschenk

This book combines real science and research with practical examples to deliver a guide every designer needs. With this book, you’ll design more intuitive and engaging apps, software, websites, and products that match the way people think, decide and behave.

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234 Tips and Tricks for Recruiting Users as Participants in Usability StudiesDeborah Hinderer Sova. Jakob Nielsen

Many companies also know that user testing is the simplest and fastest method in the usability engineering toolbox. (Unfortunately, many don’t know about the other methods in the toolbox or how to combine multiple usability methods throughout the project lifecycle, but that’s a story for another day.) 

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A Pocket Guide to Interviewing for ResearchAndrew Travers

Interviewing is both a privilege and an opportunity – a chance to garner the insight of others for the design process. Yet we often lack confidence in our ability to interview well, worry about finding the right people, or making a case for the research in the first place.

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A Practical Guide to Usability TestingJanice C. Redish, Joseph S. Dumas

This book is simply written and filled with examples from many types of products and tests. It discusses the full range of testing options from quick studies with a few subjects to more formal tests with carefully designed controls. The authors discuss the place of usability laboratories in testing as well as the skills needed to conduct a test.

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Awkward SilencesErin May, JH Forster

The place where people interview the people who interview people. Listen as they geek out on all things UX research, qualitative data, and the craft of understanding people to build better products and businesses.

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Designing for Behavior Change: Applying Psychology and Behavioral EconomicsStephen Wendel

In this updated edition, Stephen Wendel, head of behavioral science at Morningstar, takes you step-by-step through the process of incorporating behavioral science into product design and development. Product managers, UX and interaction designers, and data analysts will learn a simple and effective approach for identifying target users and behaviors, building the product, and gauging its effectiveness.

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Designing with the Mind in Mind: Simple Guide to Understanding User Interface DesignJeff Johnson

This book provides an essential source for user interface design rules and how, when, and why to apply them
Arms designers with the science behind each design rule, allowing them to make informed decisions in projects, and to explain those decisions to others.

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Dollars to DonutsSteve Portigal

The podcast where we talk with the people who lead user research in their organization.

Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web UsabilitySteve Krug

“I thought usability was the enemy of design until I read the first edition of this book.  Don’t Make Me Think! showed me how to put myself in the position of the person who uses my site.  After reading it over a couple of hours and putting its ideas to work for the past five years, I can say it has done more to improve my abilities as a Web designer than any other book.

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Google Design Notes PodcastGoogle

Get design inspiration and insights with this collection of podcasts. Method explores the career journeys of designers at Google, while Design Notes goes in-depth with designers working in diverse creative disciplines.

Handbook of Usability Testing: How to Plan, Design, and Conduct Effective TestsDana Chisnell, Jared Spool, Jeffrey Rubin

Whether it’s software, a cell phone, or a refrigerator, your customer wants – no, expects – your product to be easy to use. This fully revised handbook provides clear, step-by-step guidelines to help you test your product for usability. Completely updated with current industry best practices, it can give you that all-important marketplace advantage: products that perform the way users expect. You’ll learn to recognize factors that limit usability, decide where testing should occur, set up a test plan to assess goals for your product’s usability, and more.

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Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming ProductsNir Eyal, Ryan Hoover

Hooked is a guide to building products people use because they want to, not because they have to. Written for product managers, designers, marketers, startup founders, and people eager to learn more about the things that control our behaviors.

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Interviewing Users: How to Uncover Compelling InsightsSteve Portigal

Interviewing is a foundational user research tool that people assume they already possess. Everyone can ask questions, right? Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Interviewing Users provides invaluable interviewing techniques and tools that enable you to conduct informative interviews with anyone. You’ll move from simply gathering data to uncovering powerful insights about people.

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It’s Our Research Getting Stakeholder Buy-in for User Experience Research ProjectsTomer Sharon

The book also offers ways of teaming up with stakeholders; strategies to improve the communication of research results to stakeholders; and the nine signs that indicate that research is making an impact on stakeholders, teams, and organizations. This book is meant for UX people engaged in usability and UX research.

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Just Enough ResearchErika Hall

This book helps you to discover your competitive advantages, spot your own blind spots and biases, understand and harness your findings, and why you should never, ever hold a focus group. You’ll start doing good research faster than you can plan your next pitch.

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Laws of UX: Using Psychology to Design Better Products & ServicesJon Yablonski

This practical guide explains how you can apply key principles in psychology to build products and experiences that are more intuitive and human-centered. Author Jon Yablonski deconstructs familiar apps and experiences to provide clear examples of how UX designers can build experiences that adapt to how users perceive and process digital interfaces.

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Lean UX: Applying Lean Principles to Improve User ExperienceJeff Gothelf

This book shows you how to collaborate closely with other members of the product team, and gather feedback early and often. You’ll learn how to drive the design in short, iterative cycles to assess what works best for the business and the user. Lean UX shows you how to make this change—for the better.

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Mapping Experiences: A Complete Guide to Creating Value through Journeys, Blueprints, and DiagramsJames Kalbach

This practical book shows your company how to use alignment diagrams to turn valuable customer observations into actionable insight. With this unique tool, you can visually map your existing customer experience and envision future solutions.

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Measuring the User ExperienceBill Albert, Tom Tullis

Measuring the User Experience provides the first single source of practical information to enable usability professionals and product developers to effectively measure the usability of any product by choosing the right metric, applying it, and effectively using the information it reveals.

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NN/g UX PodcastTherese Fessenden

The Nielsen Norman Group (NNg) UX Podcast is a podcast on user experience research, design, strategy, and professions, hosted by Senior User Experience Specialist Therese Fessenden. Join us every month as she interviews industry experts, covering common questions, hot takes on pressing UX topics, and tips for building truly great user experiences.

Observing the User Experience: A Practitioner’s Guide to User ResearchElizabeth Goodman, Mike Kuniavsky

This book presents a complete toolbox of techniques to help designers and developers see through the eyes of their users. It provides in-depth coverage of 13 user experience research techniques that will provide a basis for developing better products, whether they’re Web, software or mobile based. In addition, it’s written with an understanding of product development in the real world, taking tight budgets, short schedules, and existing processes into account.

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PresentableJeff Veen

The Presentable podcast focuses on how people design and build the products that are shaping the digital future. Jeff tracks the tools, trends, and methods being used by teams from major companies and the latest startups.

Quantifying the User Experience Practical Statistics for User ResearchJames R. Lewis, Jeff Sauro

This book provides a foundation for statistical theories and the best practices needed to apply them. The authors draw on decades of statistical literature from human factors, industrial engineering, and psychology, as well as their own published research, providing both concrete solutions (Excel formulas and links to their own web calculators), along with an engaging discussion on the statistical reasons why tests work and how to effectively communicate results.

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Quantitude PodcastGreg Hancock, Patrick Curran

A podcast dedicated to all things quantitative, ranging from the relevant to the highly irrelevant. Co-hosts Patrick Curran and Greg Hancock talk about serious statistical topics, but without taking themselves too seriously. Think: CarTalk hi-jacked by the two grumpy old guys from the Muppets, grousing about quantitative methods, statistics, and data analysis, all presented to you with the production value of a 6th grade school project. But in a good way.

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Remote Usability Testing with Live Video StreamingPauli Rinne

Being able to observe usability tests remotely would increase the flexibility of the usability testing process and decrease the expenses of traveling to the test site. This thesis assesses how streaming video over the Internet would fit the usability testing process, what kinds of solutions are available, and how they perform. The usability testing process is a part of product development and the human-centered design process.

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Research Design: Quantitative, Qualitative, Mixed MethodsPatricia Leavy

This user-friendly book provides a step-by-step guide to using the five major approaches to research design: quantitative, qualitative, mixed methods, arts-based, and community-based participatory research.

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Ripple: The big effects of small behaviour changes in businessApril Vellacott, Jez Groom

Ripple is about how small behaviour changes can have wide-reaching effects in the real world. By applying behavioural science in your working life, you can have positive ripple effects on the world around you.

While nudging is now commonplace in politics, most of our daily interactions with companies, products, and services have not yet been transformed with behavioural science. Doing so is often a messy process but, armed with this book, you’ll have the practical toolkit to get started.

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Small Data: The Tiny Clues That Uncover Huge TrendsJames R. Lewis, Jeff Sauro

Martin Lindstrom, a modern-day Sherlock Holmes, harnesses the power of “small data” in his quest to discover the next big thing
Hired by the world’s leading brands to find out what makes their customers tick, Martin Lindstrom spends 300 nights a year in strangers’ homes, carefully observing every detail in order to uncover their hidden desires, and, ultimately, the clues to a multi-million dollar product.

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Smashing UX Design -Designing Online User ExperiencesJames J. Chudley, Jesmond J. Allen

The ultimate guide to UX from the world’s most popular resource for web designers and developers Smashing Magazine is the world’s most popular resource for web designers and developers and with this book, the authors provide the ideal resource for mastering User Experience Design (UX). 

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The Conversation FactoryDaniel Stillman

Welcome to The Conversation Factory, where I investigate how to create change through changing conversations. In each episode, I’ll talk to an amazing conversation designer about how to Amplify, Shift or Transform conversations in Organizations, Teams, Communities, and our own lives. Visit where I distill these insights we can bring into our work and lives.

The Design of Everyday ThingsDon Norman

The Design of Everyday Things shows that good, usable design is possible. The rules are simple: make things visible, exploit natural relationships that couple function and control, and make intelligent use of constraints. The goal: guide the user effortlessly to the right action on the right control at the right time.

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The Inmates Are Running the AsylumAlan Cooper

Imagine, at a terrifyingly aggressive rate, everything you regularly use is being equipped with computer technology. Think about your phone, cameras, cars-everything-being automated and programmed by people who in their rush to accept the many benefits of the silicon chip, have abdicated their responsibility to make these products easy to use

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The User Experience Team of One: A Research and Design Survival GuideLeah Buley

The User Experience Team of One prescribes a range of approaches that have a big impact and take less time and fewer resources than the standard lineup of UX deliverables. Whether you want to cross over into user experience or you’re a seasoned practitioner trying to drag your organization forward, this book gives you tools and insight for doing more with less.

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The World of UX PodcastDarren Hood

The World of UX podcast, hosted by UX and experience design veteran, educator, and conference speaker, Darren Hood, is dedicated to presenting topics covering and addressing all things UX. We’ll cover every UX-related method, discipline trend, career advancement and challenges, education recommendations, UX maturity levels, and maturity level management, and much much more. If you’d like to stay informed about UX, The World of UX is for you!

Think Like a UX ResearcherDavid Travis, Philip Hodgson

 You’ll discover how to plan and conduct UX research, analyze data, persuade teams to take action on the results, and build a career in UX. The book will help you take a more strategic view of product design, so you can focus on optimizing the user’s experience. 

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Understanding Your Users – A Practical Guide to User Research MethodsCatherine Courage, Kathy Baxter, Kelly Caine

You’ll learn about many distinct user research methods and also pre-and post-method considerations such as recruiting, facilitating activities or moderating, negotiating with product development teams/customers, and getting your results incorporated into the product. For each method, you’ll understand how to prepare for and conduct the activity, as well as analyze and present the data – all in a practical and hands-on way.

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Usability Testing EssentialsCarol M. Barnum

Usability Testing Essentials presents a practical, step-by-step approach to learning the entire process of planning and conducting a usability test. It explains how to analyze and apply the results and what to do when confronted with budgetary and time restrictions. This is the ideal book for anyone involved in usability or user-centered design―from students to seasoned professionals.

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Usability Testing HandbookJames R. Lewis

One goal of this chapter is to provide an introduction to the practice of usability testing. This includes some discussion of the concept of usability and the history of usability testing, various goals of usability testing, and running usability tests.

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Usability testing: What have we overlooked?Chattratichart Jarinee, Gitte Lindgaard

For more than a decade, the number of usability test participants has been a major theme of debate among usability practitioners and researchers keen to improve usability test performance. This paper provides evidence suggesting that the focus be shifted to task coverage instead.

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User DefendersJason Ogle

This podcast highlights those leading the way in their craft by diving deeper into who they are and what makes them tick, in order to inspire and equip those aspiring to do the same. User Defenders aims to enlighten and entertain those passionate about making a difference in their work.

User Experience RevolutionPaul Boag

This e-book is for anybody passionate about user experience, but who is in a company that needs an extra push. You might be a designer, marketer, content specialist, or any one of many jobs concerned about user experience.

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User Research: Designing Better Products and ServicesStephanie Marsh

User Research is a practical guide that shows readers how to use the vast array of user research methods available. Covering all the key research methods including face-to-face user testing, card sorting, surveys, A/B testing, and many more.

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UX PodcastJames Royal-Lawson, Per Axbom

A twice-monthly podcast hosted by James Royal-Lawson and Per Axbom. UX Podcast was created in response to “organizational silos” within the UX community-meaning a lack of adequate communication or means to share knowledge and information within UX and related fields.

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UX Research for beginnersJoel Marsh

This book has everything. If you want to get started in user experience design (UX), you’ve come to the right place: 100 self-contained lessons that cover the whole spectrum of fundamentals.

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UX StrategyJaime Levy

This hands-on guide introduces lightweight product strategy tools and techniques to help you and your team devise innovative digital solutions that people want.

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UX Wizards PodcastUX Wizards Podcast

UX Wizards Podcast is for creatives of all levels who want to learn more about the paths that led them to UX.

We interview designers, researchers, entrepreneurs, students, and design enthusiasts about their background, interests, and education (informal or otherwise!) Join us as we will explore their stories, passions, and any advice that they would like to share with other designers.

What is wrong with UX?Kate Rutter, Laura Klein

This podcast’s description is rather short, simply stating that Kate and Laura drink and fight about what is wrong with user experience design.

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Why UX?Erin May, JH Forster

The show dedicated to inspiring, educating, and motivating UX designers both new and seasoned. Guests share their UX journey, career, and industry experience.

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Writers in TechWriters in Tech

Writers in Tech is a podcast where content strategists, UX writers, and content designers share industry tips and tricks. It features interviews with various UX writers and authors around the globe from prominent organizations like Kickstarter, Waze, Google, Intuit, and more.