I had a lot of questions about user experience of digital tools and Samantha Raddatz answered them all during her User Experience workshop. Raddatz is a user experience consultant for the CUNY Academic Commons.
The workshop was divided into two parts: what good user experience is and how to do user testing. Not surprisingly, focus on the user is key for success of your tool. Therefore, user experience has to be as seamless as possible; the user should not have to think about how to use the tool. Not intuitive architecture, for example, can be frustrating and reduce the use of the app. Since the aim of the tool is to maximize the time a user spends on your page or program, the developer needs to spend the necessary time and resources testing throughout the development process. Raddatz listed the steps on the PowerPoint in a clear fashion, which was very helpful for my comprehension and retention. She spoke in an engaging and accessible manner and provided multiple recommended resources for further assistance. Overall, I found the workshop to be valuable for my understanding of digital tools development.
The main takeaway for me was that whatever you’re developing, do user testing frequently throughout the process. If you wait until the last minute, it might be too late to rework the architecture. And if you’re working with limited resources, do guerrilla testing in a coffee shop with cookies as treats for volunteers! 🙂