Low-fi prototyping in the early stages of UI design

The goal of this assignment is to learn how to use low-fi prototyping in the early stages of UI design. You will first sketch out many different design realizations that will implement your solution. You will then select the best of these realizations to test further. You will build a low-fi prototype of this best design and then perform a simple usability test.
Project Requirements

  1. Concept and UI Exploration: Sketches and Storyboards
  2. Concept Sketches: Based on your insights from need finding and your 3 tasks, brainstorm and draw 3 rough sketches of at least 3-5 different design ideas (realizations) to implement your chosen application idea. Look at a wide variety of input/output modalities (e.g., speech, wearable, etc) to explore the space.
  3. Design Selection: Pick the best of the two design ideas for continued exploration. Please give the reasoning for your choice from field data and/or design reasoning and intuition.
  4. UI Storyboards: storyboard a task flow for two tasks, for a total of at least three task flows, that shows (visually) how the tasks will be performed using your best proposed user interface from (1b). These storyboarded task flows will also show the transitions between screens (i.e., arrows showing relationships between interaction on one screen and changes in state). Make sure these are self-explanatory with any additional notes annotating the storyboard to explain. Scan in or take photographs of these UI Storyboards for your report.
  5. Design and construct your low-fidelity prototype

Your low-fi test will use the three (3) or more tasks that you turned into UI Storyboards in (1c). These benchmark tasks should include at least 1 simple task, 1 moderate task, and 1 complex task. These tasks should give good coverage of your interface.

  1. Find at least three (3) participants to work through your tasks.

You should not use friends, class members, or people who have already been exposed to your project. The type of people you use should be based on your needfinding.
Testing Procedures

  • Have one of your teammates demo the system to show the participant how they would interact with your prototype. Do not show your participants exactly how to perform your tasks. Just show how the system works in general and give an example of something specific that is different enough from your tasks.
  • You should write up a script of your demo and follow the same script with each participant. The participant will then be given task directions for the first task that tells them what they are trying to achieve, not how to do it. When they are finished, you will give them the directions for the next task and so on. Keep each task on a separate card or sheet of paper.
  • Make a log of critical incidents (both positive and negative events) during the experiment. For example, the user might make a mistake or they might see something they like and say, “cool.” Write it down along with a description of what was going on. Later you should prioritize these events and assign severity ratings to the problems (use the ratings of 0=no problem, 1=cosmetic problem only, 2= minor usability problem, 3=major usability problem, 4=usability catastrophe).
  • Each participant will perform all 3 tasks. Keep the data separate for each task and participant. Keep participant identity confidential in your logs.
  • Take a video record of the testing phase.

We require your report be no more than 1500 words of text (images are free–put the word count at the bottom of your report). Your report should follow the outline below and will be graded using the guidelines that follow.

  1. Title, each team member’s name (only last initial) & role
  2. Introduction (¼ page)
  3. Mission Statement/Value Proposition
  4. Problem / Solution Overview
  5. Sketches (images w/ caption)
  6. overview image of the 15-20 sketches you made
  7. top two sketches storyboarded
  8. Selected Interface Design (¼ page)
  9. storyboards for 3 tasks

ii.reasoning for selection

  1. Prototype description, with images of each screen used by your tasks and a picture of the entire system (½ page)
  2. Method (¾-1 page) 1. Participants: demographics, how recruited/compensated 2. Environment 3. Tasks 4. Procedure 5. Test Measures
  3. Results (½ page)
  4. Discussion (¾ page)
  5. Appendices (as many pages as necessary – link from text into the appendices)
  6. include all forms (consent forms, surveys, etc.) handed out to participants
  7. include raw data (cleaned up and readable)

iii. include any extra figures that don’t fit in the body

  1. Short video record

Report Grading Criteria
Writing quality (10 pts)
Sketches (10 pts)
Selected interface design (10 pts)
UI Storyboards (10 pts)
Prototype (20 pts)
Method (15 pts)
Results and Discussion (15 pts)
Presentation Guidelines
The presentation grading will be broken into two components: the individual grade of the presenter and a group grade for the presentation of the initial UI design ideas & the study results.

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