Test - Re-test & test again !

If you attempt to analyse how successful your work has been just by reviewing it yourself it would be a bit like James Dyson saying his vacuum-cyclone cleaners were going to be a great success without ever trying it out on the people in the market he had designed the machine for. He might be correct in saying that but it wouldn't be based on any real feedback.

So how can you test your product ?

There are two main types of testing - qualitative and quantitative. A moments thought about what these actually are might tell you that qualitative is based on feedback that relates to qualities whilst quantitative testing is actually measurable.

A simple illustration of the difference would be that a new toy you had made could be assessed qualitatively by making up a questionnaire and asking lots of children if they liked playing with it … if they found it easy to understand .… if they thought it was good quality … etc… What did they think about it?  Parents too could be asked similar questions and come up with similar qualitative answers.

If you check your science department they should have small newtonmeters that can be used for really measuring things to do with your product. If it were a toy that you were testing then you could attach the newtonmeter to the front and measure how much force was needed to pull the toy along a flat smooth surface. This is a measurable quantity and really has a lot of significance when testing.

Once again the presentation should be by bar-charts, pie charts, graphs, etc. Use pictograms (pictographs) to personalise your work… although computer packages such as EXCEL can easily do the job for you why not re-draw the outputs using a drawing board and your own design of logo, motif or image to convey the results in a more interesting way.

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