Insights

Join us for ongoing reflections on the role that UX research and design plays in helping people learn and teach better.
    UX researchers and designers preparing for tests
    ARTICLE: Sarah Freitag & Allie Lozinak

    Are your UX design and research teams working in lockstep?

    The best EdTech products, the ones that instructors, students, and administrators value most, are those that truly anticipate and meet their users’ needs. Developing a product with a superior user experience requires the right UX expertise, of course. But that’s not all. Your product’s usability also depends upon how well your product team coordinates and collaborates during the development process.

    UX designer reviewing EdTech product updates
    ARTICLE: Adam Sonnett

    Managing your UX investment to protect and nurture your product

    As your product needs evolve over time, the ability to scale your UX resources up or down is crucial to maximizing your product’s growth — and your UX budget’s impact. In fact, that’s one of the reasons we encourage EdTech companies to think of their UX spend as an investment rather than a strict, project-by-project budget. When you invest in UX as an ongoing project (on a quarterly basis, for example), you free up your product and UX teams to work more efficiently and productively as they identify solutions and resolve problems. 

    Image of arrows aligned around common vision
    ARTICLE: Trevor Minton and Julee Peterson

    How product leaders can unite EdTech stakeholders and teams around a common vision

    As a product leader, one of your primary responsibilities is to connect the leadership team’s vision of their EdTech product with the actual needs of the product’s users. To do this well, you must execute leadership’s vision responsively. This means modulating the product roadmap as your product team surfaces new information about user needs or identifies risks associated with leadership’s vision. Leadership teams are naturally more future-focused.

    Image of design system elements showing spacing guidelines.
    ARTICLE: Chris Albert

    Why a design system should be a core part of your product roadmap

    Within any product, there exists a large set of individual design elements, from buttons and colors to menus and form fields. Together, these individual elements make up the basic building blocks of a product’s design. Design systems are the means by which product teams document those individual components, describe how they behave, and provide usable guidelines for how to build patterns and workflows. Many product teams write off design systems as being superfluous.

    Design debt weighs heavily on a product leader's mind.
    ARTICLE: Chris Albert

    The high costs of design debt – and how to pay it down

    Usability problems can crop up in EdTech products for any number of reasons. An incomplete understanding of user’s needs. Inadequately defined product requirements. Insufficient user testing. The list goes on. Many of these issues can be headed off simply by incorporating UX and user-centered design best practices in the product development process. But no matter how attentive your team is to its users, and no matter how airtight your approach, there’s another usability problem that is sure to materialize with time: design debt. 

    Case Study: New connected digital experience for students and instructors fuels rapid market dominance.

    Openfield provided UX strategy and design that resulted in this intuitive, innovative suite of learning tools that facilitate campus communication and create a standardized ecosystem of support at every stage of the student lifecycle.

    Read More