Rethinking thinking aloud: A comparison of three think-aloud protocols

Obead Alhadreti, Pam Mayhew

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

42 Citations (Scopus)
21 Downloads (Pure)


This paper presents the results of a study that compared three think-aloud methods: concurrent think-aloud, retrospective think-aloud, and a hybrid method. The three methods were compared through an evaluation of a library website, which involved four points of comparison: task performance, participants' experiences, usability problems discovered, and the cost of employing the methods. The results revealed that the concurrent method outperformed both the retrospective and the hybrid methods in facilitating successful usability testing. It detected higher numbers of usability problems than the retrospective method, and produced output comparable to that of the hybrid method. The method received average to positive ratings from its users, and no reactivity was observed. Lastly, this method required much less time on the evaluator's part than did the other two methods, which involved double the testing and analysis time.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCHI '18 Proceedings of the 2018 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
ISBN (Print)978-1-4503-5620-6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2018
Event2018 ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI'18): Engage with HCI - Palais des Congrès , Montreal, Canada
Duration: 21 Apr 201826 Apr 2018


Conference2018 ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI'18)
Abbreviated titleCHI 2018
Internet address


  • Usability testing
  • user studies
  • user experiences
  • think-aloud protocols
  • human-computer interaction

Cite this