UX/UI case study
august 2019

drexelone redesign

DrexelOne Mobile is a free application provided by the university that grants users access to their personal, academic, financial, and career information from their devices. The app is an on-the-go mobile method of relying information as well as providing information on University dining, campus locations, shuttle bus schedules, etc.

PROJECT SCOPE

problem statement

Drexel University is a private university located in the brotherly love city of Philadelphia. DrexelOne Mobile is a free application provided by the university that grants users access to their personal, academic, financial, and career information from their devices. It is currently available for Android, iOS, and Windows Phone. The app is an on-the-go mobile method of relying information to the students, faculty, and staff at Drexel University as well as providing information on University dining, campus locations, shuttle bus schedules, athletics, and general campus news, activities, and events.At the moment, Drexel University is looking for a way to address issues regarding the low quantity of student body engagement on campus therefore have turned to improving the experience of their mobile application in order to increase student engagement and promote a better experience for incoming students. 

my role

User Experience Designer

As the designer, my task included User Research, Wireframing, User Interface and Visual Design, and Interactive Prototyping.

tools Used

Adobe XD and Adobe Photoshop

goals

for the redesign

To foster more student engagement on campus for prospective, incoming, and current students.

for my personal growth

To take lead in conducting user research and analyzing research insights, generate low to mid-fidelity wireframes from scratch, design through Adobe XD, and prototype through InVision.

user research

STEP 1: Existing Mobile App Analysis

I began the redesign by analyzing the existing mobile layout. The mobile interface was outdated, difficult to navigate and cluttered with unessential screens.The redesign began with an analysis of the existing mobile layout. The result of this analysis concluded that the current app interface is outdated, lack affordances, difficult to navigate and cluttered with unnecessary screens that are little to never used. 

step 2: understanding the users (user interviews)

For this part of the research, I decided to survey a range of students at the University ranging from undergraduate to graduate level in order to gauge what the students though was most important and useful features personally to them on the Drexel Mobile app. I interviewed and surveyed 25 Drexel students to get a better understanding of whom I was designing for. Some sample questions include:

What do you usually use DrexelOne app for?How often do you use DrexelOne in a given week? 
On a scale of 1-5, how easy is it to navigate through DrexelOne (1-hardest, 5-easiest)?
Which of these features on DrexelOne do you use?The responses were recorded through Google Form then organized onto a spreadsheet that can be found here!

step 3: user research analysis

key insights

insight #1

During these user tests, I aimed to figure out what the interaction between the user and the mobile app is like for the current students as well as if they integrate the app into their everyday routines. Again, my participants range from undergraduate to graduate level students since those are the only users that are currently allowed to access the mobile application's interface pass the login page. This first insight gave me a stronger sense of the scale of difficulty users felt when they arrive on the initial page of the app, which usually dictates the rest of their journey depending on rather or not they find it to be difficult, confusing, or overcomplicated. Furthermore, this will help me revise the current features on the existing interface's home-page so that I make it more user-friendly with more guided cues to navigate throughout.

insight #2

The main concern about the existing application is that there are features that are unessential and rarely to never used. It's important to declutter in order to make more breathing room for the users to navigate or even add in features that are considered a necessity towards improving the level of student engagement on campus. Thus, since the goal is to improve student engagement on campus it's a priority to have features that allow students to explore the activities, news, and events that are available on campus without having to go so far to see them. 

insight #3

One of my priorities consisted of making sure that there was less clutter and more space in general throughout the navigation of the app. I find it important that students tend to engage and remember more of certain features if they are organized and structured in a friendly manner rather than placed all in one section where it makes it harder and more indecisive for them to choose where to begin. Thus, for my initial proposed change, I would like to suggest evolving the initial home-page/dashboard in order to increase the level of discoverability, offering a simpler but more high-end, functional level of the application for the user. The major change made later on was altering the hamburger style menu and transforming it into a tabbed menu for quicker navigation glance.

samples of final product

conclusion

In the future (over next few months),  I hope to work closely with Drexel University's College of Computing and Informatics in order to put this into place so that we can increase student engagement on campus, especially since we are a cooperative education school meaning half of our students are away on internships for one half of the year while the other half are on campus and in classes. It's important even if the students are away at work for them to still feel engaged throughout campus and getting them more involved too. Overall, the purpose is to enhance the user experience on mobile interfaces but this specific wireframe modification is to illustrate how the DrexelOne app could be improved by implementing new alterations to the design and functionalities in order to better the lives of Drexel University students both inside and outside of the classrooms.There is much to improve with this interface, however, I think for now it is important to upgrade what is currently on there and improve it from there before adding new additions to it since users need time to adapt and become acquainted with the given features. The user experience will be enhanced once users can easily use this app and use it at its full potential as in integrating it into the student's everyday lives, especially incoming and prospective students in which this new modification of the app can help them to adjust and transition into the college lifestyle and boost student engagement between them and new peers.