NYU Classes Redesign

Description
Redesigning how students track assignment due dates.

Role
User Research
Usability Testing
Wireframing
Prototyping

Timeline
Sept - Dec 2020
(4 months)

Design Question:
How might we create a more efficient and organized design system for tracking assignment due dates?

Research
Background

The NYU Classes learning management system enables NYU faculty to use web-based collaborative and assessment technologies to enhance the teaching and learning experience. Instructors may use this service to design full-featured online course environments for the participants of their class. Participants may access course materials, collaborate with others, engage with interactive assessments and assignments, and track their progress in a course gradebook. Authorized community members can access the system at classes.nyu.edu.

Current Design

NYU Classes is powered by a learning management system (LMS) call Sakai. The current design neglects efficiency when navigating through the site.

User Persona
Problem Statement
Students have trouble keeping track of assignment due date.
Survey

With the pandemic, I was not able to conduct in-person user interviews. Instead, I sent out an online survey with 16 short questions to NYU students. The survey consisted questions about their experiences with NYU Classes and how they feel about keeping track of due dates and submitting assignments. 

I resulted with 56 responses and was able to make some conclusions:

Many students answered that they use the calendar app and physical agendas where they can get notified, have a whole glance of things they need to get done and see how much time they have left for it. 

Goal Setting
User Journey
Feature Prioritization

Using the feature prioritization, I looked at the high impact and expected features to mainly focus on, which are compiling assignments in one place, highlight upcoming assignments in the home page, push notification when a new assignment is posted. 

In addition, I also added the high impact and unexpected features such as a countdown clock feature and notification center.

Competitive Analysis

By examining the competitive analysis, I was able to compare the missing features on NYU Classes with Canvas and Blackboard. I aim to design NYU Classes with all the features Canvas and Blackboard are doing. In addition, including features neither canvas nor blackboard consists. 

Site Map

The end goal is set to always lead you to the assignment details where students submit their assignment, regardless of where you started your navigation from. 

Usability Testing

With the usability testing, I was able to make some design changes that arrived to my final iteration.

With all the assignments compiled in one place, you can choose to sort the assignments either by class or by date.

A/B Testing: Sort by Class

A/B Testing: Sort by Date

During the usability test of 5 students, all of them chose option B for sorting by class and date. They did not like the extra white space they have on the right hand side. They prefer a similar visual organization with the rows and columns as the current design of NYU Classes.

Hi-Fi Wireframe

Home/Overview

The home page where I rearranged the order of contents on the sidebar.

What's new?

🌟 Notification button.
🌟 Highlights of 5 upcoming assignments.
🌟 Countdown clock of the time left to complete and submit this assignment.

My Assignments:

Assignments are compiled in one place. In a more organized and easy to navigate manner, the students will be able to view all the assignments in their desired view and organization.

What's new?

🌟 Compiled all assignments.
🌟 Links to navigate to individual assignment page.
🌟 View in: list or calendar.
🌟 Sort by: class or date.
🌟 Countdown clock.

Retrospective

A screenshot of my presentation on the class recording (I forgot to take a screenshot during my presentation😅).

With months of user research, I was very happy with my final deliverable. This project not only served as my final individual project for a UX class, but it also helped me grow my research fundamentals. I am glad that I had the opportunity to present it to my peers and as well as receive comments and critiques. I would know this is successful if the students are utilizing the features well along with their coursework. The next step I would take is to make the wireframes a little more detailed, an interactive prototype, and conduct more usability testing to a wider range of NYU students to receive a realtime feedback.