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Burke Learning

A mobile application that provides parents with the tools to enhance their children's learning experience beyond the Burke Museum

An educational app designed for families that visit the Burke Museum with children aged 5-12

Project Details
5-week long mobile interface design project
My Responsibilities
Ideation, Concept Development, Information Architecture, Wire-framing, Usability Testing
& User Research

The Need

The Burke has one of the largest repositories of natural history in the region. Of the museum's many visitors, families frequent it the most. These families invest a lot of time and money in their museum experience, however, much of this education is inaccessible to children beyond the museum. I wanted to explore how a new mobile application might help parents nurture their children's learning even after they leave the museum.

Photo Credits: Aaron Leitz Photography 

Key Features

ONBOARDING
Parents can create custom profiles for each of their children. Selecting the child's age provides curated sets of topics that parents can pick from based on their child's interests.
ACTIVITIES
Through a variety of topic-specific activities, children can continue to learn after leaving the Burke. During these activities, children receive feedback to help reinforce concepts. Encouragement is provided through levels, digital badges, and museum gifts at set milestones.
PROGRESS
Parents can view their child's progress to revisit topics for better topic reinforcement. They also easily identify topics that children need more support within. Audio refreshers also help kids strengthen their knowledge within a topic in
a more engaging way.
 
 

Research

To understand the existing experience for parents and how it could be improved I conducted ethnographic research at the Burke. I lead the synthesis of this information into the following experience map to identify the pain points and opportunities.
Journey Map.png

[Click to open enlarged map]

SYNTHESIS
During this process, I also conducted 11 interviews with visitors and staff at Burke to understand what parents are looking for in their child's educational experience. Upon affinity mapping, the observations three key insights emerged.
Affinity Mapping Observations
Affinity Mapping Observations

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Distilling Insights with a Teammate
Distilling Insights with a Teammate

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Burke Open Doors for Children
Burke Open Doors for Children

Credit: Burke Website

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Affinity Mapping Observations
Affinity Mapping Observations

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Process Photos [Click to enlarge]

KEY INSIGHTS

Parents are looking for age specific recommendations and a personalized experiences

There's a lack of information about Burke's exhibits and learning resources

Information overload means that parents can't easily find answers they are looking for

Design Interests

Moving forward, I specifically chose to design this interface to be both parent and child facing. Since younger children most likely do not have their own mobiles to access this information, parents or guardians would be sharing the application with the child.
 
Personally, I also hoped to further the memorable interactions between parents and children that I saw in the burke by bringing that delightfulness into the mobile application.
I translated the research insights to key user goals that guided my design process. They are as shown below.

KEY USER GOALS

Tailor learning to

individual children

Complete continuous
& engaging
 activities

View progress & opportunities for learning

Information Architecture

Lorem Ipsum

Prototyping

After some rapid brainstorming of layouts, I wireframed the app before designing mid-fidelity screens.
Onboarding - Screen 24.png
Onboarding - Screen 26.png
Onboarding - Screen 27.png
Onboarding - Screen 30.png
Onboarding - Screen 31.png
Onboarding - Screen 32.png

Welcome Screen

Sign Up

Number of Users

Child's Age

Child's Interests

Multiple Profiles

Activities - Screen 31.png
Activities - Screen 33.png
Activities - Screen 34.png
Activities - Screen 35.png
Activities - Screen 36.png
Activities - Screen 32.png

Activities Page

Activity Inntorduction

Quiz Activity

Selection Interaction

Concept Reinforcement 

Level Badge

Progress - Screen 5.png
Progress - Screen 4.png
Progress - Screen 2 OLD.png

Progress Page

Topic Recap

Revisit Activities

I went on to test these frames with three potential users to see if the app was close enough to the user's mental model. Through this process, I received some interesting feedback that shaped this mid-fidelity prototype (same the protoypes under 'key features').

Mid-fidelity Prototype [Click to play]

Refining Interactions

After the course of this project I chose to continue to work on the interactions within the app. I incorporated a lot of feedback I had received and also tried to tie it back closer to the values and design interests I had earlier.

Final Screens

ONBOARDING
Login.png
Onboarding - 30.png
Onboarding - 39.png
Onboarding - 27.png
Onboarding - 34.png
Onboarding - 28.png
Onboarding - 22.png
Onboarding - 21.png
Onboarding - 20.png
SWITCHING PROFILES
Home - 11.png
Home - 12.png
Home - 13.png
Home - 16.png
MULTI-USER ACTIVITIES
Activities - 21.png
Activities - 1.png
Activities - 2.png
IN-MUSEUM ACTIVITIES
Lock Screen.png
Activities - 14.png
Activities - 15.png
Activities - 18.png
Activities - 19.png
Activities - 20.png
PROGRESS
Progress - 1.png
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Reflection

At the end of this project I was hoping to present it to staff at the Burke, but the closures due to covid-19 changed those plans. However, I received some positive feedback about the app from potential users.
Moving forward I'd like to continue to explore how I might be able to bring more delight into the app using micro-interactions. I'd also conduct a few usability tests to see how well the recent interactions work for users.
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Mobile Interface Design Elective | Mar '20

University of Washington, Seattle