Blog Post 3: Moving forward with User Interviews

We’re about to move into the next stage of our project: User interviews for HowToCollege. I anticipate that we will face two difficulties as we start conducting our user research: finding participants and completing our interviews on time. These two problems boil down to accessibility and accountability. I already am feeling the time crunch: how will I conduct my 16 interviews on time? How will I collect interviewees with the characteristics I want? What should my criteria be? This is a question to ask myself, my fellow DLRD members, and Erika. I’d really like to discuss this topic in our DLRD meeting this afternoon. This brings me to another topic:  We should really do better in communicating with Erika, so we know what she wants and we can start our interviews earlier. If we had emailed her earlier about our user interview questions, then we might have established a script much earlier, and had something to show her at our meeting this weekend (Nov 11-12) – say, a transcript of a user interview. I think a way to solve this kind of problem in the next class is to have more ambitious deadlines and constant contact.

Accountability is another issue, which is also tied in with time. We need to put more accountability measures in place to get our user interviews done. This was mentioned in the syllabus build: We have a common deadline of 11:59 on Saturday for our weekly blog posts and interviews (which average 4 a week). We will enforce this with social pressure (talking about our interviews in our weekly meetings) and general stress.

We should also have meeting minutes at the end of every meeting; so we don’t forget what happened, and also so we have something to show for our work. I am putting myself in charge of writing the minutes for the meeting today. By the end of each meeting, we should have a report to JM on what we did and what we are planning. I think this is a good idea to keep us accountable; I’ll bring this up at the meeting today.

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