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CN08: Innovations in Card Sorting: A Hands-on Approach

Quick Facts

Time: Tuesday, 13 April 2010, 9:00 to 13:00
Units: 2
Organizers: William Hudson


This half-day hands-on course covers an innovative range of techniques to maximum the benefits of card sorting as applied to information architecture. The techniques range from the use of barcodes to expedite the data capture from paper card sorts through to new methods of analysis that extend and complement traditional approaches such as cluster analysis. Note that because of time constraints the focus is on quantitative rather than qualitative results.


Web and intranet designers, information architects, usability and HCI professionals interested in the practical application of card sorting. No specialist skills or knowledge are required.


The tutorial portion course has been presented to public and corporate audiences in the UK, including the UK Usability Professionals’ Association, the Scottish UPA, HCI 2006, HCI 2007 and HCI 2009. It was presented at a PHICHI event in Philadelphia in September 2007. It was also an invited tutorial for CADUI 2008 in Spain. The course was well-received at CHI 2009 in Boston. A one-day version of this course has been presented as part of Nielsen-Norman Group conferences.


On completion of this tutorial you will be able to:
  • choose an appropriate card sorting method
  • explain cluster analysis and dendrograms to colleagues and clients
  • apply appropriate techniques for getting the best information from participants and the resulting data
  • perform quick and reliable data capture


William Hudson has over 30 years experience in the development of interactive systems. He has contributed material on user-centered design and user interface design to the Rational Unified Process and to Addison- Wesley’s Object Modeling and User Interface Design (van Harmelen, 2001). He is the founder and chief executive of Syntagm, a consultancy specializing in usercentered design. William has written regularly for the ACM’s interactions magazine and SIGCHI Bulletin. William is the inventor of the “Caps” approach to card sorting (Computer-Aided Paper Sorting).