For the past couple of months I’ve been co-teaching with Luke Miller at Generally Assembly. The class is UXD with the goal of those taking the class could be hired as junior ux’ers by the end of the 12 week course. I’ve really enjoyed working along the students and Luke. We’ve been covering a wide range of areas that will lead the students to have a pretty in-depth final project whether that be an app, website or some hybrid.
Last night before class I was talking with a student about a number of states that they should consider as they build out their system for navigation. As we discussed things it struck me that an easy way to consider things is 1. what are they doing before the action, 2. what are they doing while they are doing the action, and 3. what are they doing after the action? Extra points for considering those steps as a first time user, how things might evolve for second and third times, and finally considering some of the errors that a user might encounter and how their system will help guide the user as they make mistakes.
In some respects this seems pretty obvious but as users (and designers) work through systems the obvious tends to fade to the background as people start actually do their tasks. As we work through systems and the inevitable happens, getting stuck it is worth considering the flow above. It also helps as a handy checklist to compare against while testing and considering questions to see if the system will actually work for the user.