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ENGAGED by Amy M. Bucher Kirkus Star


Designing for Behavior Change

by Amy M. Bucher

Pub Date: March 3rd, 2020
ISBN: 978-1-933820-42-2
Publisher: Rosenfeld Media

A comprehensive debut book demonstrates the application of behavioral psychology to digital design.

“Behavior change designer” may well become a widely recognized job title thanks to this breakthrough work. Bucher, who describes herself as a psychologist applying her knowledge to the design of behaviorally based digital experiences, has created a volume that is absorbing, timely, and (not surprisingly) impeccably designed. This tightly organized book begins with an authoritative overview of behavior change design and then logically addresses how to “achieve desired outcomes.” The rest of the book focuses not on design elements but design strategy as it relates to users. For example, one chapter discusses how to make choices easier while another covers how to help users overcome obstacles. Later chapters move into broader issues, such as how technology encourages connections and trust, how an organization benefits from behavior change design, and what the future holds for this emerging discipline. One especially strong aspect of the work is the author’s use of numerous examples in the form of full-color screen images accompanied by pertinent captions and detailed descriptions. Every one of these examples is relevant and illustrative of the text. Another valuable addition to the book is a feature at the end of each chapter called “Perspective,” in which the author introduces an expert and includes answers to questions that directly relate to the chapter. The insights of these individuals serve to further illuminate the author’s own writing by providing a different yet supporting viewpoint. Bucher also intersperses intriguing “Notes” and “Tips,” highlighted in color type to differentiate them. For example, in one tip, she provides a solid definition of the term “good decision” while a note reveals the importance of “Accessibility in Design,” or “making your products usable to people with disabilities.” Bucher’s explanations and observations are cogent, incisive, and research-based; they are often in easily readable bulleted form, augmented by the occasional useful chart. By the end of this superb book, readers will get the feeling that no aspect of behavior change design has been neglected.

Destined to become a seminal work on innovative digital design.

(color diagrams, illustrations)