Establishment of an Automotive Ergonomics and Usability Laboratory
The project aimed to establish technical and methodological infrastructure for conducting design and user research for the automotive industry. The main objectives were to support the Turkish Automotive Industry with research activities by developing novel research methodologies and know-how, during the product development phase. Another objective was to conduct academic studies and educate researchers that are needed in the automotive industry. The UTEST Automotive Lab, established as a unit of Middle East Technical University CAD-CAM Robotics Center, has sufficient and contemporary infrastructure that can support the automotive industry in a wide range of research studies, and has been active by engaging with extensive research projects since its establishment.
Product Safety and Usability Testing
“Product Safety and Usability Testing” Project supported by the European Union gave the opportunity to UTEST staff to work with usability experts in The Netherlands (Delft University of Technology) and United Kingdom (Loughborough University), to develop common procedures and methods. The project lasted for 18 months, and it supported the activities carried out by UTEST during 2003 and 2004. The project included six activities involving two workshops with international partners. The project included six activities involving two workshops with international partners, collaborative usability testing in three countries, publishing the research findings, a workshop with Turkish Consumer Associations on current problems and future strategies on developing consumer awareness and a data bank on electric home appliance related accidents.
Establishment of Product Safety and Usability Laboratory
The project aimed to establish technical infrastructure and know-how for conducting “Product Safety and Usability Evaluation Tests” under the roof of Middle East Technical University CAD-CAM Robotics Center. The objectives of the project were:
- Establishing a database for “product design responsibility” and “product related accidents”;
- Establishing technical and methodological infrastructure for the studies of product safety and usability;
- Providing test facilities for industry organizations;
- Conducting academic studies.
UTEST Product Usability Unit, which was founded within the scope of this project, contains necessary and sufficient installation for conducting usability studies in any product or system that has interaction with users.