They Aren’t Wrong, We Are:

Designing Online Courses for How Students Actually Use Them

Ellyn Buchanan, PhD

Sara Hurley, PhD, MFA

Audra Kerlin, MLIS

Who are we?

(and why did we do this?)

Ellyn Buchanan, PhD - Learning Technologist, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota

Sara Hurley, Phd, MFA - Director, Office of E-Learning Services, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota

Audra Kerlin, MLIS - Media Project Coordinator, School of Public Health

Why Usability?

Whitney Hess’s definition

User experience is the establishment of a philosophy about how to treat people.

The users (our students) are not lazy/stupid/annoying

Hess’s 5 Guiding Principles for UX Designers

  • Understand the underlying problem before attempting to solve it
  • Don’t hurt anyone
  • Make things simple and intuitive
  • Acknowledge that the user is not like you
  • Have empathy

How we prepped for testing

In house meetings with all instructional design/course support staff

Based on meetings, developed two “ideal” sites that tested different opinions

Developed scenarios for different assignments and tasks

What happened

“It’s the internet. I should be able to click on things.”

If this is how our students feel using the environments we create, they aren’t wrong, we are.

Action Item

Reevaluate learning objectives

Action Item

Develop standardized course template

Action Item

Form Student Advisory Board for online learning

Hearts by Veronika Krpciarova from the Noun Project

Moving Forward

reload by aguycalledgary from the Noun Project

They Aren't Wrong: We Are - eLearning Summit 2016 - Google Slides