Unmoderated testing with Lookback: Tasks

How to set up an unmoderated Tasks round of research in Lookback

Russ Troester avatar
Written by Russ Troester
Updated over a week ago

Tasks is a step-by-step research method, which makes for an intuitive unmoderated participant experience, with seamless transitions between the tasks of the study, which is of great help when there's no moderator around to guide or handhold the participant. You can set a separate url as well as list task-specific instructions for each task.

This help article will walk you through the basics of our unmoderated, task-based product Tasks for both Desktop and Mobile, what characterises it, and how to set up a Tasks round of research.

Table of Contents

How does Tasks differ from from SelfTest?

While both SelfTest and Tasks are unmoderated rounds research, a SelfTest round only allows for a single URL and set of instructions. In comparison, a Tasks round allows you to:

  • Set a Scenario for your unmoderated session in more detail to help set the mood and intent for your test, thereby helping your participant get into the desired mindset before the participant starts completing the tasks.

  • Itemize your research so that participants complete each task in sequence. In other words, they will have to complete one task to be able to continue to the next one.

  • Set different auto-open URLs (website, prototype, survey etc) for each task as well as specify task-specific instructions. The instructions field also allows you to list additional urls if needed.

All in all, Tasks is a research product that gives you a smooth participant experience and intuitive transitions from one task to the next, a feature that is especially handy for participants using mobile devices.

What type of research is Tasks intended for?

Tasks is good for traditional usage, unmoderated usability testing of websites, prototypes or native apps, when:

  • the participant doesn't have to see all instructions/links in advance, or if it's beneficial for the participant to follow instructions one-step-at-a-time for some other reason, and you want the participant to do one discrete question or task at a time

  • you have 5–8 questions/tasks that require sequenced focus

  • you need to include multiple URLs (websites, prototypes, surveys)

  • you have distinct questions that require a simple response

  • you encourage 'speak aloud' perspectives e.g. preference testing

How to create a Tasks Round in your dashboard

1) If you already have a Project created, you can skip to step 2. Otherwise, start by clicking the + New Project on your dashboard

2) Click New Round in your existing Project

3) Choose Tasks

4) To change the Round description – click the pencil icon ✏️ (top right) to name (or describe) your round. Once you've entered it, press the Enter/Return key on your keyboard. Note: the description is just to help you and your team identify the round. Your participants will not see it.

5) Set the Welcome Message (optional) for participants

  • This is shown to the participants before they start a session and allows you to explain the context of the session, add links to external consent forms, and add any explanations needed to help your participant through setup & instructions

🚀 You can use Markdown formatting to format the text for your Welcome Message, Scenario, Task Instructions, and Final Message.

6) Set the Scenario (required)

  • This is what the participant will see after they finish their entire setup

  • As mentioned in the introduction of this help article, it helps set the stage for the participant before they actually start the test

  • You can optionally add an auto-open URL and direct participants to a website or prototype

7) Add the individual Tasks

  • Start by clicking the + Add task button to add your first task

  • The Task text/instructions is required

  • You can create as many tasks as you want the participant to carry out.

  • The tasks will be presented one at a time – progression to the next task when the previous one is completed. The first task will be shown after the participant has read the Scenario and clicked Begin.

  • Optional: Each task can have it's own, unique auto-open URLs so the participant will automatically immediately see the desired website/prototype/survey when a task begins.

🚀 If you are using our extension-free beta and testing on desktops, you may want to consider using markdown formatting to add a reminder for the participants in each task not to close the small window as it could result in them having to redo some steps. If your participants will be using mobile device or a mix of mobile and desktop, we would not recommend adding this notice.

For example, if you format it like this in your round:

This is what the participant will see in that window:

8) Localisation choose the language your participant will experience when running a session. Click here to see the list of languages currently supported by Lookback.

9) Transcription language (required) - choose the language your participant will be speaking to help aid the auto-transcription when the session is finished.

10) Device requirements (optional) use this option if you want to limit your participant to using a particular type of device; only check the device types you want to be available to your participants. You can also choose to disable the Extension-free Beta (enabled on all new rounds by default)

11) Hide controls on Mobile browsers (optional) - when selected, we will attempt to hide the navigation and address controls on mobile browsers to better simulate a full-screen experience (especially useful when testing mobile prototypes).

12) Participant camera

  1. Optional. The participant can choose whether or not they want to enable the camera for their session. They will not be able to change it once the session has started.

  2. Required. A camera must be selected before starting the session.

  3. Disabled. The participant will not be given the option to use their camera

13) Task Order (optional) If you want each participant to get the tasks in a random order, enable the Randomise option in the left panel

14) Session Limit (optional) - sometimes it's helpful to over-recruit participants for a study because life happens and sometimes participants sign up but don't show up. By setting the session limit, you can invite as many people as you want but only the first X participants will be able to do the study. For example: if you set the limit to 10 and invite 20 people, only the first 10 people who do the study will be able to complete it. Anyone after that will get a message that the study is no longer available.

15) Add a Final Message (optional) for participants

  • This message is shown to Participants after they have completed the final task of the session.

  • It allows you to thank the participant for his/her time and/or add links to an external (post-session) survey.

16) Click Save at the top right. (You will see a warning message if you've forgotten to select anything that is required.)

17) Click Next and you'll be taken to a page with the Participant Link. Click Copy link to copy the link and paste it into your invitation.

Please note: the link can also be found later in the project dashboard

Final notes

  • Like all round types, once your participant completes a session, you will find the recording in the relevant Round in your project

  • When you're in Playback mode, you will be able to clearly see when your Participant transitions from one Task to the next on your timeline, to help with faster synthesis.

  • You can also increase playback speed, take time-stamped notes, @mention team members in your notes and create highlights as usual.

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