Fall2005.CSCI380Homework1Baker History

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Michael Baker CSCI 380 September 17, 2005

Prentice Hallís Train & Assess it system is web based software that allows students to complete testing and training online. In general, the user interface is pretty straightforward. The currently selected option appears in the main column and selecting options from the navigation column on the left hand side can be used to access different features. The typical user would need to use this software to take tests and complete training modules. The software is completely sufficient to enable these tasks.

The software modules that enable users to take tests tend to be riddled with inoperability. They strive to simulate common Windows interfaces and Microsoft Office software. Often, certain things that can be done in the real life program cannot be achieved in the simulation. For instance, right clicking the interface may or may not bring up a context menu. This is usually dependant on whether the context menu can be used to get a correct answer. In the actual Microsoft software, you can right click anywhere and it will bring up a context menu.

There are problems with the conceptual model and user feedback. There are problems with the conceptual model because it does not match the software it is trying to simulate and there is a problem with feedback because when a user right clicks, no feedback is provided if it doesnít bring up a menu. It either works or it doesnít.

The context menus need to be put in even if they are not necessary for the question. When something as simple as a context menu fails to work, users believe that there is something wrong with the question.

%width=500px height=362px% http://stu.cofc.edu/~mdbaker1/phit.JPG"Prentice Hall Test Module"

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I certify that this submission is entirely my own work,
as per course collaboration policy.

Name: Michael Baker Date: September 20, 2005