We are soooooo close to releasing the new Teach site.
In advance of the release, I wanted to conduct some user tests to make sure we’re still on the right track. This week I conducted two user tests with members of the community (yay!). As is always the case with user testing, I learned a lot from observing users interact with the site.
You can see detailed notes here and read my recommendations below.
These recommendations are based on formal user tests with two users as well as feedback from people who’ve been involved or observing the process throughout. Also, please note that I wasn’t able to test the primary functionality on the site (adding a Club to the map), so these recommendations are more about IA and other content issues.
Findings and Recommendations
ACTIVITIES / CURRICULUM / RESOURCES
- People want to see more activities and resources.
- People expect to be able to sort and filter.
- Our internal distinction between the Clubs Curriculum (the official curriculum for Clubs; with a strong recommendation for following the prescribed path) and Teaching Activities (more “grab and go”-style) is not intuitive to users.
- The Teach Like Mozilla content needs to be more integrated into common user flows.
- Continue with current plan for developing and publishing more approved curriculum and activities.
- Continue brainstorming work around scalable presentation of curriculum begun in this heartbeat. The ideas discussed so far address sorting and filtering, and make good use of the Web Literacy Map as an organizing tool.
- As part of that design work, we should also allow users to access all teaching materials from the same page, and provide specific views for “official Clubs curriculum.” I recommend we keep the Teaching Activities page, and remove the Clubs Curriculum sub-page. This content is one of our primary offerings so it belongs at the top level. /cc @iamjessklein
- We need to offer a solution for sharing resources—e.g. maker tools, other curricula, programs. (Hello, Web Lit Mapper!)
- We need to design a stronger connection between teaching activities and the Teach Like Mozilla content. A short-term solution might be to link to the TLM page from every individual activity page, but we should also be working towards a better longer-term solution. /cc @laurahilliger
- The Clubs Toolkit is not findable, and needs to be supplemented with content targeted towards helping people “get started.”
- We are not providing enough information for the use case of a person who is deciding in the moment whether to start a Club.
- Make the Clubs Toolkit more visible on the page.
- Consider renaming the Clubs Toolkit something like “Getting Started Guide” or “A Club’s First Month” – and editing content to match. /cc @thornet
- Based on my understanding of the expected pathways to starting Clubs, I do not think we need to make any significant changes to the Clubs page to address the use case of someone coming to the site and deciding in the moment whether or not to start a Club. As I understand it, our plan for growing Clubs makes use of the following scenarios:
- 1) Someone is “groomed” by staff member, Regional Coordinator, or other community member. By the time they arrive at the site, they have the specific intent of adding their Club.
- 2) Someone finds out about us through Maker Party, and through a series of communications learns about Clubs and decides to start one. They are coming to the site with the specific intent to add their Club.
- 3) Someone with an existing program or group wants to be listed in the database. Again, they are coming to the site with the intent to add their Club.
In short, I don’t think we’ve yet seen a reason to have the site serve a “selling” or persuasive function. I *do* think the Clubs page is a natural first stop for someone who is looking to understand how to start a Club. I think the changes recommended in the bullet points above address that.
- The copy describing the Events page in the main navigation is misleading, since the content on the Events page is about Maker Party.
- People may understand throwing a Maker Party as a “first step” to starting a Club, rather than a lower-bar option for people who do not want to start a Club (and perhaps never will).
- I think we should re-brand what is currently the Events landing page as “Maker Party.” We’ve already sort of done this in that, while the page is called “Events” in the nav, the h1 copy in the hero image is “Host a Maker Party.” I suggest we change the copy in the nav to “MAKER PARTY” and the teaser copy to “Our annual global campaign”. /cc @amirad
- Users tend to ignore, not see, or misinterpret the CTAs at the bottom of every page
- Users do not notice links to the sub-pages in the main navigation
- We need to design better, more intuitive pathways for viewing secondary pages
I’m going to keep banging this drum: We need to clarify our audience! I think we’ve made good progress in terms of clarifying that our “first line” audience includes educators and activists. But I think we have to take it a step further and clarify who those educators and activists are working with. There are at least two axes that I think are important to be clear about: first, the global nature of our work, and second, the specific age groups of what I’m calling the “end learners,” for lack of a better term.
I think we do a pretty decent job of conveying the global nature of the program through copy and imagery, though obviously implementing our l10n strategy is absolutely fundamental to this.
I think we are less clear when it comes to the age groups we’re targeting with our programs and materials. For example, I think we ought to specify the appropriate age level for each activity. (And the images, activity titles, and copy should reflect the target audience.)
Questions, comments, disagreements wholeheartedly welcomed!