Skip to content

UX design principles in UIT (at Tufts?)

by Melanie St. James on January 18th, 2012


Gone are the days when we built everything from scratch. We are in an era of Software as Service, 3rd-party product implementation, open source… More than ever, it is important to integrate core UX principles in IT projects.

Need: A definition of UX

  1. Consider the complex eco-system in which this new project (tool or service) will live in.
    • How can a new project help simplify the “technology landscape” at Tufts?
    • Will this new project involve asking users to learn one more destination, one more system name, one more url? (can it be avoided?)
    • Can this project be integrated with other related tools or services? (or make it look like it’s integrated)
    • Is it a hermetic 3rd party product, or can we link to specific pages inside the new system from other websites? (you’d be surprised…)
  2. Get end-users involved.
    • Talk to real end-users, early and often.
    • Do not create user requirements based on business requirements
    • You are not the end user (in most cases)
  3. Each project requires its own UX approach
    • UX work is not one-size fits all

I am keeping a list of resources to consult in this post:

IBM’s User-Centered Design principles

For each principle, the goal is to involve users — to ask the right people the right questions.

Set business goals. Determining the target market, intended users, and primary competition is central to all design and user participation.

Understand users. A commitment to understand and involve the intended user is essential to the design process. If you want a user to understand your product, you must first understand the user.

Assess competitiveness. Superior design requires ongoing awareness of the competition and its customers. When you understand your users’ tasks, you must test those same tasks against competitive alternatives and compare their results with yours.

Design the total user experience. Everything a user sees and touches is designed together by a multidisciplinary team. This includes the way a product is advertised, ordered, bought, packaged, maintained, installed, administered, documented, upgraded, and supported.

Evaluate designs. User feedback is gathered early and often, using prototypes of widely ranging fidelity, and this feedback drives product design and development.

Manage by continual user observation. Throughout the life of the product, continue to monitor and listen to your users, and let their feedback inform your responses to market changes and competitive activity.

From → User Experience

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.