IDEA9106 Design Thinking

Design is a state of mind



Blog Reflection 3 – Creating Personas

1. Describe your experience of creating personas from different users’ perspectives gathered in the interview data. Was there enough commonality between the 4 people interviewed to form a coherent persona? Or did it make more sense to create a second different persona?

As a group we chose to focus on the topic of supermarket shopping experiences. Firstly – in pairs – we interviewed each other with open-ended questions and focussed on personal demographics (i.e. age, sex, location), needs (i.e. where are you shopping, what do you usually buy and why?), frustrations (i.e. You said you find shopping labourious. Why?)and ideal experiences.

After the interview, we rejoined as a group and graphically displayed using semantic differential scales and star ratings to identify commonalities between us. We found that there was only a small variance in shopping frequency, shopping enjoyment, shopping values (i.e. cost, quality, variety) and shopping reasons (i.e. impulsivity, necessity and enjoyment). We were able to form a persona (i.e. a “Young Creative”) based on commonalities such as valuing sustainability and intolerance of waiting times.

2.  Do you think your final persona (s) was successful in generating empathy with users? What would you change to make it better?

Our final persona was slightly more general in nature than we would have liked as we struggled to formulate a backstory. By interviewing some more individuals for a bigger sample to increase the variance of response, we could more accurately identify whether there is more than one persona to represent.

Blog Reflection 02 – Interpreting Data

  1. How did this exercise help you build empathy with prospective users?

This exercise helped me build empathy with prospective users because the interview process allowed me to understand their needs, wants, motivations and frustrations. The interviewer employed open-ended probing questions which allowed me to generate an informed idea and identify common themes. For example; interviewee 8 valued outdoor activities, good food (i.e. local restaurants and markets), being economical, and staying in homely accommodation when travelling (i.e. not “generic” hotels) . They also found a phrase/gesture book handy.

2. How did the clustering of information help you to understand user needs?

The clustering of information was effective in that it provided me with a visual representation of underlying themes in regards to user needs. Whilst some affinity notes popped out first as fundamentally similar and could be clustered together with an appropriate blue label (i.e. “We want to be economical”), other notes were slightly more abstract and group discussion facilitated; we were able to draw a blue label thematic link  between “doing cool things” and “eating good food” through “meeting locals to provide information”. Furthermore, walking the wall and viewing other groups’ clusters helped us to refine our own and consider other patterns.

3. What was difficult or challenging with the technique? How would you do it better next time?

A challenge was trying to restructure clusters if there were too many affinity notes under each blue note. Next time, I would try to only convey one major idea per affinity note and/or trash identical affinity notes to avoid repetition and be more efficient.

Blog Reflection 01

  1. How is this sketchnoting technique different to the traditional note taking?

Traditional note taking generally involves annotating ideas and concepts onto a document using text in a sequential and logical order or structure. The ideas are often paraphrased and presented in bulleted or numbered forms.  Conversely, sketchnoting allows the user to represent these ideas using a combination of text and visuals in a variety of structural ways (i.e. grid, radial or freeform) and may incorporate drawings, arrows, bullets, typography and diagrams.

2. How does  this visual approach facilitate communication of your ideas? Conversely how does it prevent it?

The visual approach of sketchnoting helps facilitates communication of ideas more efficiently and effectively because it represents ideas non-linguistically. By using various structural forms, icons, diagrams and drawings, ideas that may take paragraphs to describe via text can be communicated in a shorter period of time. Conversely, by representing ideas non-linguistically, it often requires a greater deal of planning and reflection because the way in which the sketchnote is structually organised and the fidelity of the drawings themselves may impact how effectively individual ideas and the whole concept can be conveyed.

3. Personal challenges as a sketchnoter:

  • I found that my sketchnoting process became more of a “dialogue”- as I was presented with further information, I questioned the structural layout of my sketchnote and what may have initially started as a radial diagram became more freeform.
  • I found that I was drawn more towards using text as I need to become more comfortable with sketching images and remembering to link concepts with symbols such as arrows.
  • I found that the fidelity of my drawings/sketchings were quite low and that I need to work on a personal drawing style to more effectively communicate objects/people/emotions/situations.
  • I need to ensure that I am conservative in how I am using space on my document and that I am not repeating the same idea or sketching irrelevant information that will not add value to the overall message.

    Can We Create New Senses for Humans?

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