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Education Focus Groups vs. User Studies —What’s the Difference?

Education clients have different needs when it comes to research. Often, we support them with focus groups and user studies. It’s not unusual for us to hear, “right — same thing, really.” Well, not exactly.

There are certainly many similarities at first glance — both types of research are qualitative in nature and rely on a neutral, skilled moderator and carefully prepared discussion guide to gather “on the ground” insights from administrators, teachers, parents, and students. Yet each has its own distinct benefits and utility, and can be leveraged independently or as complementary tools within the life cycle of a project or program.

We have found that reports from either approach become valued and long-lived references, whether we are working on an education product, campaign, or program. MMS Education’s measurement and evaluation team and user experience analyst offer some highlights below on what makes each approach unique.

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If you are looking to conduct research to better understand your education audience or how your product or program is perceived and/or used, MMS Education can help. Call us today at 866-382-6116 or fill out this form to get started.

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