Conducting Observation Description
I caught three students from my MAE 305 class as we were walking out of the Computer Science building and towards our next class. The prototype I tested was for a mobile app that asks users questions for psychology studies in return for monetary compensation when studies a completed over the course of a week. During the interviews, I noted that all the users navigated the user interface quite easily. Each screen flowed to the next, and most users had no problem understanding the questions. Two of the users suggested the application intelligently draw data from the mobile device’s behavior over the course of a day. For example, it should send notifications only when it knows the student has a free class schedule. In addition, it can draw from information like dining halls and geolocation to infer best responses and suggest them to make getting through the pscyh study much easier. The final user suggested I add colors to the application to inrease the appeal factor with end users.
Idea Brainstorm — Collaborated with Andrew Cheong and David Dohan
- Students should complete psychology studies in a piecemeal fashion to earn monetary compensation
- Late students should lose money to charity every time they’re late to class, creating concrete motivation to be on time
- Students should play a game of memory on the projector to pass the boredom
- Teachers should play review questions on the projector in the same way movie theaters show previews before the feature film
- Students should play laser tag across the classroom with their iPhones to solve boredom
- The Daily Prince should conduct polls to everyone in the classroom, especially if they’re tring to target a certain demographic of the student population
- Students should have questions related to the class answered by their peers, and the teacher should kick off with the ones the students could not answer amongst themselves
- Local restaurants should come give sample food to passers by students to promote their wares and excite the student customer base
- Students should stand up in front of the classroom and be student ambassadors for corporate brands like Microsoft, and convince their peers to adopt the company’s services
- Teachers should have a lounge where they socialize in between classes
- The dining hall should provide free samples to get student feedback on new dishes
- Campus Fitness should conduct free exercise activities while students are waiting for class to begin. Nothing like Zumba to get the mind ready for class
- Students should give each other job interview questions so they’re better prepared for their upcoming interviews
- Students should give mini-lectures in the time before class begins to share interesting things they’ve discovered about the class subject
- The teacher should conduct a game of Jeopardy to review class material
2 Favorite Ideas
- Students should complete psychology studies in a piecemeal fashion to earn monetary compensation. I like this idea because it kills two problem birds with one stone: student boredom and the struggle to elicit responsive psychology study subjects
- The teacher should conduct a game of Jeopardy to review class material. Similarly, this idea helps to review class material and kills student boredom at the same time.
Photos & Descriptions of Prototypes
In this first prototype, we see a sample user workflow for a mobile app that asks psychology study questions to students waiting in between classes. The app asks for the student’s mood, eating, and energy levels at the moment.
In the second prototype, we see the user experience for a student sitting in class, where the teacher conducts a game of Jeopardy on the board to review previous class material.
Photos & notes from user testing
A live test subject using my prototype!
- Initially, my first user didn’t understand the context of the application, so I started to give background information about what this study was for and what this prototype intended to model
- After initial background information, users navigated the prototype’s flow quite easily
- When asked, all of them responded that they would be willing to complete these short studies in-between class for monetary compensation. One out of the three said they would do it for free.
Insights From Testing
- Give more background information on the home screen to set up users for what they’re about to do
- Perhaps take advantage of the phone’s geolocation abilities to customize responses to the psych study questions
- Monetary compensation seems to be a requirement for user engagement