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Is there a way to evaluate/validate your paper prototypes other than asking your user and explaining your design?

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Yes! Assuming you don't want to use any propriety prototyping software, you could do:

  • Manual paper prototypes - Mockup several screens on a mobile screen-sized paper sheets and tape the first screen on a mobile device (or some other rectangular object in the same size). As the tester goes through the user-testing, manually place the relevant paper-screens on top of the device's screen. This is a good way to test if users understand the layout of the UI and the relations between the screens they're passed through.
  • In-screen paper prototypes - Scan the mockups, arrange them in an order that represents a pre-determined scenario you want to test, upload them to a mobile device and conduct the user-testings. This is very similar in principle to the previous method, with less interruptions. Read more about this method in these article: Paper-in-Screen Prototyping , Designing with Paper Prototyping.
  • In-screen paper prototypes with links - This is essentially the same as the previous one, only with utilizing PowerPoint capabilities to add some interactivity. Upload the scanned mockups to PowerPoint, use transparent rectangles over sketched buttons to enable links between slides, upload the presentation to a mobile device and then conduct the user-testings. This is more complicated then the previous suggestion, but has the advantage of emulating simple interactions. Ofcourse you could use more of PowerPoint's capabilities (e.g. animations), but this goes beyond the scope of what you asked for.

Good luck!

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