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Research for Redesign: Develop Design Solution for McMaster Library 

About McMaster

The McMaster University Library has long played a pivotal role in supporting the University's research ecosystem. Through innovative physical and virtual environments, services, and learning opportunities, has been an active partner in teaching and learning.

I worked with one of the library's internal stakeholder to developing a set of design recommendations for redesigning the web pages that outline the Library's Teaching & Learning Services. 

In this practicum project, I focused on research & and prototype building utilizing various research & design artifacts 

My Role

UX Designer & Researcher

UX Resources

Research

Wireframing

Prototyping

Objective

Developing a set of design recommendations for redesigning the web pages that outline the Library's Teaching & Learning Services

Background

The University Library's vision is to aspire to be a catalyst of intellectual activity for the University and its community. They deliver innovative services, welcoming spaces, and exemplary collections to accelerate research, enhance learning and improve the user experience.

 

With that said, the Teaching and Learning T&L division of McMaster University Library is looking to refresh its existing website presence. For this practicum project, the division is asking for support in developing a set of design recommendations for redesigning the web pages that outline the Library's Teaching & Learning Services.

The current T&L webpage lacks of content, not allowing the univeristy library to showcase all its offerings

User Issues 

Current web design of McMaster University's Learning Support page exhibits several user interface design issues

There are information architecture issues found in the current flow of the website. Users find it hard to navigate the website

Research Process

Conducted Preliminary User insights 

Reached out to 10 library staffs & external stakeholders to understand any perceived gaps or wants you may have regarding the creation of a more encompassing Teaching & Learning web page that highlights all of the great work being done in the library.

The goal was to interview 5 Key Library Stakeholders, however due to unforeseen circumstances (Summer Holiday), many stakeholders were not able to join the interview. Hence, in total I interviewed 3 users via Zoom to understand their pain points and their overall thoughts to the current Teaching & Learning site. 

Interview Participant 1 *Anonymized Users*

Interview Stakeholders

Primary Research 

Final Design Recommendation

Due to the time constraint, after conducting various primary & secondary research, I immediately developed the design recommendation as part of the final submission to the team. With the interview findings, I develop the appropriate design recommendations for McMaster's Teaching & Library site based on three factors: Design (UI), Content, and Information Architecture (Layout). 

Prototypes (Sample)

Figure. Students Redesign T&L Web Page

Figure. Faculty Redesign T&L Web Page

Challenges 

To create a good redesign, it is essential to know what are the pain points and frustrations users are experiencing with the current design. The interview outcome did not come as expected due to unforeseen circumstances. Most of the librarians could not attend the interview.

Lack of User Data 
Lack Design Direction

Existing website have their own design direction (color palette, prototype, layout style). I did not receive their existing design style and needs. Henceforth, it was challenging to devise a design solution without any clear background

What's Next?

Due to the time constraint, I was not able to fully conduct a thorough research. Before going to the design stage, I would want to have more in-depth insights (interviews) to have a stronger design solution

To conduct multiple iteration. Having one prototype version would not be a strong design solution. Discussing with the whole design team would be essential to conduct multiple iterations

To conduct multiple iteration. Having one prototype version would not be a strong design solution. Discussing with the whole design team would be essential to conduct multiple iterations

Further Research
Multiple Iteration
Usability Tesing

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