Third Space Learning

User Experience
Responsive WEB Design
CLIENT

Third Space Learning

TEAM MEMBERS

Leo Ah Kun
Johanna Vollrath
Hugues Bareteau

SKILLS

User Experience, Responsive Web Design

My ROLE

Survey Design, Competitor Analysis, User Interviews, Design Studio Host, Paper Prototyping, User Testing

PROJECt DURATION

2 weeks

CASE STUDY

Problem 

Too many children believe they simply can't "do" maths. This is because when children fall behind in class, they need one-to-one help support from their teachers or parents to help fill the gaps in their knowledge. In state primary schools in the UK, the average class is about 30 pupils. This means that a pupil only receives about 5 minutes of one-to-one time with a teacher which is not nearly enough time to help them.

The Brief

To design a new website for Third Space that addresses new customers’ questions and concerns about their unique service. Third Space Learning is an intervention programme that allows pupils to have one-to-one Maths support with tutors from around the world online.

The Solution

We solved 3 key problems with the existing Third Space site by:

  • Adding better structure to the existing information on the site. This allowed visitors to find information quicker and easier.
  • Adding an online demo section to illustrate how tutor and children interact with each other.
  • Adding a search feature to find schools and case studies nearby that use Third Space. This allows schools to be more proactive to see real results of schools similar to theirs.
  • Designing a mobile friendly site so that it can be used while on the move.

Main Challenges

The timing of this project was a bit unfortunate as it coincided with the summer school holidays. This meant that we had to be a bit more creative in finding teacher participants. As our main goal was to deliver more informative content while giving new visitors the feeling of confidence in the service, we had to produce higher fidelity prototypes earlier in the process to get more meaningful results.

Process Highlights

Discovering that there were more decision makers involved than initially discussed with the client.

User Research and Discovery

Surveys 

We attempted to recruit  interviewees and testers by sending out a survey. We managed to get 42 responses, 38 of which were teachers or teaching assistants. 16 of those were our target audience, primary school teachers. Only 1 headteacher participated in the survey.

Competitor Analysis 

For our competitor analysis we identified 2 main competitors. The first is Mathletics which is an interactive program which teachers children maths online. The advantage of Mathletics is that they are automated and relatively cheap. The disadvantage is that when children have more specific problems, there is no real person to help them. 

The second is teaching assistants. Teaching assistants are hired by the school and are there for a few hours a day. They typically help children that are falling behind in a group. The advantage of teaching assistants is that they are physically present so they can build an emotional connection with the children. The disadvantage is that they still do not provide children with sufficient one-to-one time they might need to help fill the gaps in their knowledge.

Task Analysis and User Journey 

To test the usability of the existing site, we conducted a task analysis with users to determine whether they could figure out what Third Space is, what Third Space do and whether the site addressed all their questions and concerns about the service.

Our key findings from this were:

User Interviews

Headteachers

From our client brief, it was identified that headteachers were the main decision makers when investing in intervention programmes. Unfortunately due to the timing of this project we were not able to interview any headteachers, but we did get some insight from initial market research conducted by Third Space.

  • Headteachers are the ones that research new intervention programmes
  • Headteachers are in charged of budget
  • Find out about new programmes from marketing emails and other schools
  • Consult with teachers for further input

Teachers

From our teacher interviews, our key findings were

  • They thought Third Space sounded quite innovative
  • They did not think it would be difficult to get children to use it as they love using computers
  • Concerned with amount of time needed from them to integrate this with their class
  • Numerous concerns about the tutors (Who are they? What are their qualifications? How do they interact with the children?)
  • Most children do not speak English as their first language and might struggle to understand strong accents
  • Questioned whether children would lose emotional connection they get with physically present teaching assistants
  • Pricing was not clear. Wanted a comparison to a TA
  • Questioned whether tutors would divert from the set lesson if needed
  • Were interested to see case studies nearby to compare similar schools
  • Would like to try it out themselves
  • Would like to see children's opinion of the programme
  • Decision to take up programme is joint between headteacher and teachers
  • Parents need to give consent as the children would be communicating with people external from the school

Parents

As parents had to be notified of this programme, we identified the parent as a decision maker. These are the key findings from our parent interviews

  • Parents generally trust the schools decisions
  • They were not very concerned where the tutors were from
  • They were very interested in the tutors qualifications
  • Some parents were concerned about their children using computers too much at a young age
  • Parents were also very concerned about what their children would think of such a programme
Design

Personas 

To start our design process we needed personas to focus our design around. Personas are fictional people who are represent a large group of people  summarising their goals and needs. Below are our 2 main personas we focused on.

Ms Okoye - Primary School Teacher

“To teach the next Einstein is a great motivation”
Bio
  • Primary school teacher
  • 34 Years Old
  • Single
  • Manchester
Behaviour
  • Spends extra time with students who need help
  • Enjoys meeting up with friends for tea
  • Funny and patient
  • Works long hours
  • Loves teaching children
Motivations
  • Give every child the same opportunity
  • Wants to get the best results from her class
  • Wants to find a solution to provide extra support for her pupils
  • Needs a programme that fits in with her class schedule
Pain Points
  • Not enough time to attend to each child in class
  • Keeping the entire class engaged without losing interest
  • Hard to find support for a child falling behind

Mr and Mrs Baker - Parents

“We want our child to have a better chance than we had”
Bio
  • Parents of 2 children
  • 40 and 42 years old
  • Carpenter and Cashier
Behaviour
  • Caring parents
  • Want the best for their children
  • Work hard but do not make much money
Motivations
  • Want the best education for their children
  • Want children to surpass them
  • Want to monitor child's progress
Pain Points
  • Children falling behind in class
  • Lack knowledge and time to support child personally
  • Lack finances to subscribe to additional learning support for their children

Our Proposal

For our initial design we wanted to achieve the following goals

Design Studio

After holding a design studio with the client and various stakeholders decided to introduce the following

PROTOTYPE

Paper Prototype and Digital Wireframes

Key Findings

Paper Prototype
Final Prototype

Screen Flow

After 24 testers and 8 iterations, this is the screen flow for our final prototype.

Final Prototype

View PRototype
Conclusion

Summary

We have designed a site that is

Next Steps

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