Presentation on theme: "Mindy Lee Jae Won H1 Amber ITGS 3.2 Software. 1. What does User Support mean? 2. What are Manuals? 3. What are Assistants? 4. What are Tutorials? 5. What."— Presentation transcript:
1. What does User Support mean? 2. What are Manuals? 3. What are Assistants? 4. What are Tutorials? 5. What are Help systems? 6. What are “Read Me” files? 7. Similarities & Differences between online support and print-based support 8. How does user support improve the user’s experience on using software applications? 9. APA references
Well, the following is the general definition: Tools that can help users to learn how to use software applications to compete common tasks with confidence Different types of user support are shown in the next few slides
A manual is the official, comprehensive reference to the operation and maintenance of a product or device.
“User manuals – contain instructions for installing and using software or hardware and should be organized around user tasks. They don’t describe the software in the detailed way that a reference manual might—they describe how the software is used, usually with lots of step-by-step procedures. The user manual is the primary manual for all users, but particularly for novices.”
“Reference manuals – usually provide detailed information on hardware or software organized for quick reference. They may also include other types of information, such as code lists or lists of names and contact information. For software, they often systematically describe each field, in each dialogue box, in each menu. Unlike user manuals, they are not organized around user tasks, but may be alphabetized by keyword or sequenced according to the spatial arrangement of the software interface. Readers are assumed to be familiar with the software but need quick information on some aspect of the system. This is not the kind of manual to give to a novice.”
A.k.a. Wizards in Windows It is used to guide the users through a complex task by breaking it into steps and asking a series of questions – they are often used for software installation and configuration.
A computer program whose purpose is to assist users in learning how to use (parts of) a software applications such as video game. Types: Video tutorials Online tutoring Interactive on-screen instruction
A documentation component fo a software program that explains the features of the program and helps the user understand its capabilities An extensive, organized, and thorough collection of FAQs Purpose: to provide the answers that a user needs to understand and to use the program effectively
Often included with software programs Detail last minute changes or known problems which may not have been included in the printed documentation Included with updates to explain what has been added in the new versions
Inexpensive to produce, distribute and update compared to the print-based support For example, in online tutorials – which are often considered a form of Computer-Assisted Instruction (CAI), Computer-Assisted Learning (CAL), or Computer-Based Training (CBT) – users can engage highly interactive, self-paced educational activities at their own convenience and pace, either for immediate performance improvements or for general professional development.
However, don’t forget that some novice users struggling to learn new applications may find little comfort in assistance that is similarly provided online. And poorly designed systems, while conveniently available online, are often inferior in form and function to well designed, print-based genres of assistance.
Tutorials include the broadest possible topics, with users learning about features and tasks by engaging some combination of explanation, example, and hands-on experimentation.
Online documentation has a narrower pedagogical (relating to teaching) scope, with users normally consulting reference information for overviews or assistance with task-oriented procedures. Online help usually has the narrowest focus, with users needing to solve particularly pressing problems as quickly as possible and with minimal interruption.
Most of us will only read the parts of print- based documentation that apply to us, and only when we need that information. In fact, looking something up in the print- based documentation is usually not the first way we try to find information—usually we’ll ask a co-worker. Only if no one knows the information, or if no one is available, will we turn to a manual. Other reasons are lack of time and information overload.