An app that improves

student collaboration through
inclusion and empathy

UX/UI CASE STUDY

Winning Team

BrainStation x IBM Design Sprint
 

Timeframe           5 days

Tools                          Pen & Paper, Figma, Invision

Project Type        Academic Group Project

Team                     Hope Liang
                                Jose-Carlos (Joey) Laguio
                                Matthew Ahn
                                Nina Paramonov
                                Rachel Fuhrer
                                Renee Yang

Project Overview

A rapid, collaborative process that includes client brief for tackling big problems through design, prototyping, and testing ideas with users.

Creative Process

Client Brief

Coastal University is a comprehensive post-secondary institution, offering undergraduate degrees in a broad range of disciplines. Consequently, they maintain a diverse and vibrant student body.

Key Context

Any student engaging with the university from out of their home country.

Users  

International Students

How might we improve the experience of Coastal University students when collaborating as members of virtual teams both in school and work-related projects? The request is to leverage any digital technologies available to completely reimagine the international student’s education experience.

Request

Coastal University is a comprehensive post-secondary institution, offering undergraduate degrees in a broad range of disciplines. Consequently, they maintain a diverse and vibrant student body.

DAY 1

To provide international students with a seamless and collaborative educational experience 
that inclusively understands their language needs in order to communicate confidently 
with their peers and professors.
(What does communication mean)

Discovery+Research

Team goal

Performed research

57%

68%

post-secondary students reported
that their courses were delayed, postponed or cancelled

post-secondary students had
never experienced online learning before the pandemic

We believe that a lack of communication skills makes it more difficult for international students to collaborate with others in group projects.

Our hypothesis

How might we connect international students with communication resources and tools (written and verbal) so that they feel valued and heard in collaborative work?

Design question

DAY 2

Ideation 

Competitor Audit

Our team started Task Circle’s solution process by gathering inspiration from existing products.

Hight Accessibility 

Low

Adaptability 

Low Accessibility 

Google Translate

Hight Adaptability 

Google Meet

WhatsApp

Discord

Grammarly

How to Pronounce

Slack

Camera Translator 

HelloTalk 

Amazon Translate 

Tandem

Key Research Findings

-Shuyi Li, 24, Beijing

Pain points

Needs and goals

  • Lack of group connection

  • No channel for support

  • Unorganized remote collaboration

  • More frequent check-ins

  • Transparency about their challenges

  • To feel valued and heard

Our findings did not support our initial assumptions as strongly as we had hoped.

“Language communication is not so much the problem. It’s the disorganized process students use to chat…”

DAY 2 + 3

Refinement

How might we improve interactions between International students and their project teammates, so they can feel more valued and included in their remote group projects?

Nicole, 22

Location: Shanghai, China

“I want a space to communicate my progress and challenges with my
team so that we can empathize with one another and work more efficiently.”

She’s a 3rd-year international business student who went back to Shanghai when COVID 19 hit. When she collaborates remotely, she has difficulty keeping up.

“The Shy International Student”

Design question_V2

Nicole’s Experience when she works on a group project, what does that look like?

01

02

03

04

DAY 3 + 4

Execution

Sketches

After we understood Nicole’s pain, we elaborated those ideas into our initial solution sketches by empathizing features that allow empathy to support interaction. Using apps like Trello and Empath.

Wireframes

With our best sketches, we created wireframes

Team Page

Home Page

Project Page

Updated Page filled

Update Page

Team Page updated

DAY 4 + 5

Testing

After testing, we gained 3 key insights:
 

  1. The Update feature needs more contextual copy

  2. In case students don’t want to share, we could make the “Mood” indication optional 

  3. The toggle slider is not intuitive 
     

We implemented these changes to simplify the user experience. 

02

03

01

DAY 5

Final prototype

Design system

The design solution reflects the primary colours

and brand font that was given by the client. 

It is also accessible to the widest audience as

WCAG AA Compliant.

Aa  Avenir

Primary font

Primary #23BE36

Secondary #36285D

Black #3A3A3A

White #FFFFFF

Prototype 

Test me

Next steps

Here are the next steps to take to ensure the success of Task Circle:


1.  We would like to gather more feedback through       

     research and target user testing to refine the product 

     design


2.  Then ensure that educational institutions are 

     supporting our product to validate its viability in the 

     market

3.   Finally, Task Circle can be published and shared with

      the mass market and collect feedback

Let’s collaborate !

© 2020 Nina Paramonov