The aim was to create an app that helps in integrating international students into Scottish culture and life at Edinburgh Napier University. This was a group project of which I was involved in both the user research and prototyping.
DURATION: 4 Months
METHODS: Interviews, Surveys, Wireframing, Prototyping
TOOLS: Figma, Illustrator, AfterEffects
The app involves three elements to aid in the international student journey at Edinburgh Napier University whether for one semester or all four years. The three elements are Socialise, Connect and Learn.
Research was conducted with international students already studying at Edinburgh Napier University. Our questioning was centred around the transitional period upon starting at Napier and their studies.
Napier University provides a different form of education which is more critical thinking based
Studying in Scotland provides opportunities for future employment
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT
Everything to do with Accommodation (Funding, Finding and Integration)
Help adjusting to Scottish culture
Connecting with other international students
Adapting to a new culture
Assistance during coursework/ Exams
Interviews were carried out to gain rich qualitative data that would allow for the team to produce a user centric product.
It was found that all the POSITIVES of studying abroad can be NEGATIVES if the transition of the student is not handled with care and recognising "Help seeking behaviour".
It's all about the university community coming together as a whole, and the quality of relationships make the biggest difference.
As a team we decided to further investigate aspects of adjusting to Scottish culture and helping international students connect with each other. Accommodation was a big issue all round but as a team we felt that it was too big a challenge to tackle within the constraints of the project boundaries.
The concept of the wireframes was worked on as a team and utilised findings from the triangulation of assumptions, primary and secondary research. These wireframes were created by a team member and then I built upon the concept and created the prototype.
The design of the prototype was created to be intuitive and easy to use, especially understanding that the average user/international student might not have English as a first language.
The testing and data gathering process was carried out with international students via an online survey that was completed after watching a video of the final prototype. This was to make it easier to get feedback from more international students at once - this project was carried out under hybrid conditions due to Covid-19.
The video below shows the functionality of the app prototype produced for this project.
The project worked well altogether, and the final product provided a solution to several of the issues brought up during the initial research.
CHALLENGES:As a collective the group had a strong vision for the final product. There were iterations of certain pages based on feedback, but I think more changes would have been made aesthetically with more time.