LAHD Class Usability Study

Usability study of LAHD website


At CSUF, I was tasked to do a usability study. I chose to do it on the Los Angeles Housing Department website. This website is used by millions of renters and property owners to find out information about various topics on renting and regulations in Los Angeles. Making sure that people could find and, more importantly, understand what they were looking for is critical for many individuals.

Problem / Opportunity

After having to use the website myself, I felt there were some fundamental problems with the layout and information architecture. I thought that I would validate whether that was true via some basic in person usability testing.



Determine how well renters were able to find answers to common questions using the website.


Identify any problems that could be fixed quickly to improve the visitor experience. Also, identify overall structural issues that need to be addressed.


A requirements list and screener were put together. Three people were recruited and the website was tested and recorded via a screen capturing tool for later evaluation.


A usability report was generated which identified potential problems with the website as well as elements that appeared to work well.


Since this process was an school exercise and not meant to for the LAHD, recommended changes were not made but could not be implemented. However, all the same steps were taken as in a regular usability test.

Personal Contribution

I created the testing plan, recruited participants, managed testing and generated the final report.