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User-centered design (UCD) is a process (not restricted to interfaces or technologies) in which the needs, wants, and limitations of end users of a product, service or process are given extensive attention at each stage of the design process. User-centered design can be characterized as a multi-stage problem solving process that not only requires designers to analyse and foresee how users are likely to use a product, but also to test the validity of their assumptions with regard to user behaviour in real world tests with actual users. Such testing is necessary as it is often very difficult for the designers of a product to understand intuitively what a first-time user of their design experiences, and what each user's learning curve may look like.
ISO/TR 16982:2002 provides information on human-centred usability methods which can be used for design and evaluation. It details the advantages, disadvantages and other factors relevant to using each usability method.