Evaluating the usability of a semantic health data framework: approach and study

Tracking #: 3119-4333

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Albert Navarro-Gallinad
Fabrizio Orlandi1
Declan O'Sullivan1

Responsible editor: 
Guest Editors SW Meets Health Data Management 2022

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Full Paper
Usability testing presents an opportunity to promote collaboration between domain experts and computer scientists when developing tools and processes to address current data challenges in research and industry. Particularly to reduce the expertise required in using and benefiting from Semantic Web (SW) technologies when integrating heterogeneous data sources through semantic reasoning. We present a useful example of a usability testing approach to evaluate the usability of a framework (i.e. Knowledge Graph, Methodology and User Interface) for Health Data Researchers (HDR), when trying to link particular health events with environmental data to explore the environmental risk factors of rare diseases. The description and results of the evaluation approach are demonstrated for 17 HDRs with expertise in health data related to ANCA associated vasculitis in Ireland and Kawasaki Disease in Japan, and with no previous practical experience in using SW technologies. The usability evaluation results validate the usefulness of the framework allowing researchers themselves to link health and environmental data whilst hiding the complexities of SW technologies. Beyond the direct impact on environmental health studies, the description of the evaluation approach can guide researchers in making SW technologies more accessible to domain experts through usability studies.
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