MoMent is an app concept designed to help connect younger students with older, more experienced students in their program, developing lasting mentorships and strengthening community. To understand how such an app would work, this solution focuses on the graphic design program here at Auburn University, but it is designed in such a way that it would work for any program at any university. This was my first experience doing a rapid design sprint; the entire project being completed solo in just seven days.
With no mentorship system in place, younger students in the graphic design program at Auburn rarely connect with older, more experienced students, leading to a weak community.
Both underclassmen and upperclassmen in Auburn's graphic design program who have an interest in student mentorship.
Product Designer (Research, User Testing, Visual Design, Prototyping)
Figma, Protopie, Illustrator, Rotato
February 2020 (7 days)
In order to better understand the problem, I focused on five key questions during my research.
I analyzed any existing apps related to mentorship I could find to see what solutions other designers have come up with, but none of them attempted to develop lasting relationships amongst their users like I wanted to. These relationships, both professional or friendly, were missing in my program. While I had some hunches, I interviewed students at every level of the program to see why they didn't interact with many people outside of their cohort. I also spoke with a handful of professors about student mentorships they had observed in the past. I made some insightful discoveries.
From these findings I determined that the root of the problem was that students have little interaction with those outside of their cohorts, leading to a lack of mentorship and community. To combat this systemic problem, my app would need to achieve three goals:
The results of the user interviews were summarized into four personas, each presenting different needs and opportunities that would need to be considered in the solution.
Considering the task oriented nature of the project goal, user flow charts helped develop how the app would be laid out. By drawing out the way a user might complete different tasks or achieve different goals, a loose framework of screens emerged.
Low-fidelity wireframes were sketched out based on the user flow screens that had been established. The goal of this step was to get a general idea of the elements housed on each screen that would allow the user to navigate the app and complete the set tasks.
From my wireframe sketches, I designed a mid-fidelity prototype that would allow me to test my concept with potential users. I focused mainly on the flow and information architecture, not paying too much attention to colors, typography, or styles.
I had three underclassmen and three upperclassmen test my mid-fidelity prototype. Their primary task was to find a mentor and set up a meeting, but I also had them just explore the app and its other features. I asked them to think out loud as they made their way through the app in addition to a few followup questions once they completed the tasks. With the feedback I received from user testing, I made several changes to the prototype to alleviate some of the pain points that were uncovered during testing.
The onboarding process and profile creation help ensure users will be connected with compatible mentors/mentees.
Rather than randomly pairing students together, users can sort through potential mentors/mentees to make sure they find someone with similar interests.
To foster a greater sense of community within the program, MoMent also provides users with helpful resources like program-specific FAQs and an Event Calendar.
This was one of my favorite projects I've done. I am very passionate about building community with others and I am very involved in my design program, so coming up with a concept that would foster mentorship was very meaningful to me. Going through the entire design process in just seven days (in the midst of a full course load) was a challenge, but it forced me to be very intentional with my strategy and time management. I learned how to rapidly prototype and get a product in users' hands in just a few short days, allowing me to get the important insights I needed to develop the final prototype.