Creativity and science in UX design – the psychology of it

Creativity and science in UX design – the psychology of it

October 12 2016

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Creativity and science in UX design – the psychology of it reveals that how we connect and use websites has a great deal to do with human behaviour and how we all interpret the world around us depending on our background, education, and experiences.

Psychologists are experts in human behaviour and we can use this knowledge when conducting UX design. They know, for example, that when it comes to task completion it is better to show people a little bit of information and let them decide if they want more details.  

Equally, when examining creativity and science in UX design, research shows people can only look at so much information or read so much text on a screen without losing interest. So it’s best to only provide the information that's needed at the moment and make it easy to scan. Also, using headers and short blocks of information or text helps to increase readability.

Remember, too, the research shows that people can't multitask, so don’t expect them to. Assume people will make mistakes. Anticipate what they will be and try to prevent them. If the results of an error are severe then use a confirmation before acting on the user's action. Make it easy to “undo”.

The psychology of creativity and science in UX design also finds that memory is fragile therefore avoid making people remember things from one task to another or one page to another. People can only remember about four items at a time.

Mental models are how we cognitively represent the world around us, and can represent anything from an object to a task or event. The mental model that people have about a particular task may make it easy or hard for them to use an interface that you have designed. In order to create a positive UX, you can either match the conceptual model of your product or website to the users’ mental model, or you can alter the users existing mental model, or help them to create a new one. One of the ways we seek to understand our users’ mental model is through user research.

The mind is a fascinating subject, and when you apply the elements of behavioural research to website design, you can really start to see how applying your users (target audience) mental model to the process how much more effective the site will be. To find out more about our how our psychology and UX design, check out this free training takeaway.

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