In my first semester of MEITE, I took Dr. Ryoo’s Design of Emerging Technologies course, which took many of us out of our comfort zones with a “go-go-go!” energy. From Day 1, we were given about 30 minutes to find a group that we were committed to working with for the rest of the semester. I had the immense joy and privilege to work with three classmates with backgrounds in language learning in international contexts.
Our Common Ground: Target Learners
Sharing common experiences in teaching or studying foreign languages, our group sought to create a product that responded more so to the cultural and social experiences of international students rather than the linguistic barriers. Our target learners included international Chinese graduate students with limited or no prior experience in American education. During interviews with our target learners, we found that language was often not as great of a challenge as adjusting to a new classroom context and educational style. We narrowed our focus specifically on question-asking. In building the prototype, we found that even this focus was nebulous and focused even more specifically on training learners to identify when to ask their questions.
Design Thinking (Dr. Ryoo’s edition)
Though we studied IDEO’s design thinking process, we used Dr. Ryoo’s version.
Over the next 15 weeks, we accomplished 4 steps in prototyping a learning technology product for our target learners:
- Interviewed 4 target learners
- Wrote a needs analysis
- Facilitated 2 user testing sessions, one among classmates and the other with a second group of target learners
- Created 2 prototypes
- Developed a website communicating our process
The AskVR Website
We presented our work in the form of the AskVR website to document our process. There, you can find our Needs Analysis, Prototypes and Testing process, and Storyboard.