Digital Experience Design / Fall 2016

Assignment Overview

Project 1: Communication Platform

Due: Friday, 9 December 2016
Submit via Canvas
HER-V 403 | Fall 2016
Morning Section
Instructor: Aaron Ganci


Design the concept and interface for a new communication platform and present it in a useful way for developers.


In this project, you will conceptualize and design a new digital product. The product will be a communication platform (think Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat,etc). Approach this as if you are a design team within a startup.

You will design a concept for the app, a user workflow, wireframes, and a high-fidelity mockups of the user interface.

You will need to design for one of these specific platforms to implement your platform. Consider the variety of your options:

  • iOS mobile
  • iOS tablet
  • Android mobile
  • Android tablet
  • Apple Watch
  • Apple TV
  • Web

Product constraints

The elevator pitch for this product is "Snapchat-meets-Pinterest for hobbyists trying to learn a new skill." At the highest level, it needs to:

  • Connect with people I don't know around a defined topic.
  • Introduce the concept of time-sensitivity into the interaction.
  • Promote a healthy online community

Functionally, a user needs to be able to:

  • Browse topics
  • Respond to a topic in group forum
  • Connect directly with another user
  • Easily share details about your work, progress, or process


You will utilize a goal-driven UX/UI process in this project. The process, roughly will follow this pattern:

  1. Understand user goals.
  2. Define personas.
  3. Map out workflow.
  4. Wireframe screens to complete workflow.
  5. Define branding.
  6. Test prototype with users.
  7. Design high-fidelity UI mockups.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this exercise, you will be able to:

  • Discuss design concepts with developers.
  • Present a digital design solution to a variety of audiences.
  • Use digital experience and interaction design industry terminology knowledgeably.
  • Write personas that inform digital interaction design.
  • Prototype artifacts in order to conduct usability analysis tests.
  • Conduct evaluative tests to evaluate the success of a design solution.
  • Design comfortably within a specific digital platforms (android vs. iOS, etc).


  • “MVP” app in collaboration with CS students
  • High-fidelity, clickable prototype
  • Implementation Guide (document that outlines the use of brand elements and the interaction/functionality of the solution)
  • Flat screen designs (for my archival purposes)


This assignment has a total of 100 points. While there are some group components for the project, you will be graded as an individual on the following criteria:

50 pts

Refinement of UI designs

10 pts

Polish of UI elements (hi-fidelity enough to look real)

10 pts

Application of brand (color, type, etc)

5 pts

Use of design elements to communicate actions/state

5 pts


5 pts

Appropriate spacing within/between objects

5 pts

Alignment of objects

5 pts

Consistency of UI elements

5 pts

Fit on platform (iOS, Android, web, etc)

10 pts

Desirability (evidenced via Implementation Guide)

5 pts

I can see that the product is USEFUL…

5 pts


40 pts

Design Guidelines

10 pts

Structure of document

10 pts

Typography (use of grade, type choice, legibility)

5 pts

Quality of explanation of brand elements

10 pts

Use of motion/animation to explain the design

5 pts



Your grade will be broken down into the categories below*.

Category % of total
Communication Platform 70%
Exercise: Speculative Communication 20%
Reflection and Process Journal 10%

*Categories and percentage breakdown subject to change.

Late work

Every assignment in this course will be due at the beginning of the class of its defined due date. Work that is not handed in via all requested methods (OnCourse, email, printed, etc) by the predetermined time will be considered late. The consequences of late submission fall on sliding scale, increasing in severity over time. If late work is handed in within the following parameters, the grade will be reduced in the following ways:

Due date/time – same day, end of class -10%
Same day, end of class – same day, end of day (11:59pm) -15%
Next day (midnight – 11:59pm) -20%
Any subsequent day -50%
Grading scale
A+ 100-98
A 97-93
A- 92-90
B+ 89-87
B 86-83
B- 82-80
C+ 79-77
C 76-73
C- 72-70
D+ 69-67
D 66-63
D- 62-60
F 59-0