a mentoring system designed for students to help each other
Keywords: design pedagogy, mentorship, connection, relationship, communication, collaboration, remote education, live stream, social media, UX/UI case study
UX Design Challenge for Google
Time: Feb. 19 - Feb. 25, 2020
Tools: paper, card board, white board, post-it notes, camera, printer
Software: Figma, Photoshop, Illustrator, After Effects
1. Project Brief
Mentii is a mentorship system designed for the school of Design. Design students always want to learn from each other, and new students are in high demand of pursuing advice from experienced students. Mentii helps experienced student to easily become a mentor and shortens the steps for n ew students to discover the best matches. Mentii creates a mutual-communicational system for students to teach, to learn, and to share. Mentii also provides multi-dimensional insights for recruiters to find the the best-valued students.
The most challenging aspect of this exercise is that two parties need to be considered simultaneously - both mentors and mentees. To start with, I listed out their features and needs. After some research of existing mentorship systems, I brainstormed ways to match them and methods to connect them.
From the graphs, it is obvious that the needs of mentors and mentees are imbalanced. New students wants more help and support, while it remains difficult for experienced students to start mentoring spontaneously.
How to encourage experienced students to join this system? How to provide them an easy way to match and to be connected? For mentors, it’s important to work with the school to provide some forms of financial sponsorship. It’s also possible to have a donation system for mentees to assist mentors directly.
How to define connection? The main purpose of connecting is to provide helps. Besides adding an account, it’s more important to actually bound students and proceed to mentoring activities. Below are some activities that may happen between mentors and mentees. I positioned them by time efforts and level of sense of connection.
Emerging platforms such as social media and live demonstrations are great ways to save time to find great matches. Student’s work will speak for themselves, so my design focuses on on-line platforms to provide insights into students’ work and working process. Via this students can discover each other in a more holistic way and be easily connected.
It’s vital to consider the relationship between potential stakeholders. The school provides this platform for students to help each other and can provide sponsorship for mentors. Mentors provide advice and helps to mentees; mentees can support mentors as well as help them build up credibility.
Another important stakeholder are the recruiters. They have limited access to this system, but they can view the works and lives of mentors - which can help them find the best-valued students in another dimension. Mentors will also benefit from this. If the qualities are well enough, recruiters can consider sponsor the students, offer them jobs, or sponsor the school as a whole, which creates a win-win cycle.
Pain points of both experienced and new students are summarized as below.
With the research being synthesized, two personas were created to represent an experienced student and a new student respectively.
A journey map was created to further address the problems a students encounters when using the existing system - for example, USC’s mentorship site. From this, I summarized potential opportunities where I need to pay attention to and can design for.
3. Design Development
When creating this IA, it’s important to notice that most of the pages are the same for mentors and mentees, but some of the functions and features are limited to to one party. For example, mentors can add their availabilities on their profile page, while mentees can click to join these time slots.
Mentors can sometimes become mentees as well - the roles of mentors and mentees are exchangeable. The pages should be more comprehensive to consider both roles.
I used paper prototypes to test my initial ideas and iterated details for my design.
High Fidelity Mockups
4. Takeaways & Next Steps
Research: conduct interviews to get insights and more ideas to synthesis more competitor analysis if I can access to other systems
Testing: conduct testing by more users, for more comprehensive iteration of design details
Prototypes: make it responsive and cross-platform (mobile & tablet, etc.)
Story telling: use motion graphics/animations to show concepts
Profile photos: https://generated.photos/ Live demo photos: shttps://unsplash.com/ Transportation portfolio: Kun Fang The other artworks belong to me.