How you can help usability test ranked choice voting in San Francisco and Oakland on Dec 10

2 Dec 2011 - 6:48pm
1537 reads
Dana Chisnell

Bay Area people, I need your help to usability test ranked choice voting. Join me December 10 in Oakland and San Francisco. Details below: 

Flash usability test of ranked choice voting in Oakland and San Francisco 

What about the design of ranked choice ballots could be changed to help voters vote they way they intend?

Please join me in learning about voters’ mental models of ranked choice voting and how the models are affected by ballot design.

There are no political parties involved — this is absolutely independent research. I have no position on whether jurisdictions should be using ranked choice voting (RCV). The project is funded out of my own research budget (which is actually zero).

I am interested in what the experience is like for voters voting in ranked choice voting (RCV) contests.

  • What questions do voters have?
  • How well do they understand how to vote RCV?
  • What are voters’ intentions in marking an RCV ballot (that is, what is their mental model of what they’re doing and how it works)?
  • Are there particular types of voters who mark the ballot a particular way — and why? How confident are they that their vote will be counted as they intend?

 How you can help

>> Volunteer to gather data on December 10
We’ll need 2 or 3 people in each location to invite passers-by to take part, take notes, administer a quick demographic questionnaire, and take notes for each session.

We’ll provide note-taking forms and writing instruments, ballots for participants to vote on, and $10 toward transit costs. There’ll be a round of beers at the end, too.

>> Find places to hold sessions
We need indoor spots that are close to street / foot traffic where we’ll see a cross-section of people who are eligible to vote. Public library branches are good, the Y can be good, farmers’ markets or flea markets, storefronts of various kinds could also work. If you have ideas and / or connections to places in various neighborhoods in Oakland and San Francisco, please help us get in touch and get permission to use them. We’re looking for 3 places in each city.

>> How it’ll work
10:00 AM Meet up, sign in, get a quick briefing, get assignments, gather materials.

10:30 AM Fan out to 6 locations across Oakland and San Francisco.

11:00 AM (ish) Start intercepting volunteer voters as participants. Observe individual people voting in 10-minute sessions.

1:00 PM Call in (or tweet) to the Mother Ship with a progress report.

2:00 PM Meet up to deliver data, return materials, and drink beer.

Sign up! Tell your friends! Pass it on!

Send me an email with your contact information and how you want to I will send you details of meeting places and logistics. Tell your friends! Students welcome to help gather data.

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