Design Development

Phase Start / End: September 24th, 2018 --> October 18, 2018 (11:59pm)

Submission: As report / page(s) on your website


  • Translate your user needs into one or more plausibly responsive designs.
  • Evaluate the ways in which designs are actually responsive to user needs.
  • Synthesize these processes and findings into a report on your current design and the ways in which it addresses (or doesn't address) the needs you identified. Justify this narrative with evidence.
  • Demonstrate skills of ideation/generative thinking, critique/assessment, paper prototyping, and and preparation of a professional, curated report.


  1. Create a portfolio of design ideas that address the brief you articulated and are responsive to the user needs you identified in the Needs Assessment phase.
  2. Refine and select among these ideas, producing sketches of three plausible ideas.
  3. Continue evaluating ideas against your brief and user criteria; identify one approach to pursue.
  4. Create an interaction flow or storyboard mapping this idea.
  5. Build a paper prototype.
  6. Use your paper prototype to test this design idea with appropriate users.
  7. Synthesize the results of your testing and produce a report (for your presumed client). This report should answer the following questions. You need not answer them explicitly or in this order; you should just be sure that your reader would understand your thinking.
    1. What is your design?
    2. How does it work? [This is both justification and documentation.]
    3. How well does it meet user needs? In what ways does it fall short?
    4. What important alternative designs did you consider, either initially or during the refinement of this idea? Why did you reject them/prefer the one you chose? [Note that you should curate the alternatives you present, making sure that presenting them helps the reader to understand something about the idea you did choose.]
    5. What key insights did you gain in trying to produce a design that addresses your brief?
  8. Illustrate your report with appropriate photographs. You may incorporate (by reference or explicitly) the sketches, interaction flow/storyboard, or other items you've posted since your Needs Analysis. You may also incorporate (by reference or explicitly) any materials from the Needs Analysis that help serve present purposes.
  9. Your writeup should hang from a single page on your web site. You may include as many subsidiary pages as you need. Please inline images where they are illustrating accompanying text, i.e., make it possible to view both words and images simultaneously. Include only enough to make a compelling case for your brief and to demonstrate that your approach is grounded in research. Curation is a key metric here. If your web site were a printed report, it would probably be between 3 and 5 pages (not counting comprehensive prototype documentation, which may be regarded as an appendix).
  10. Please also update your effort chart with rows that account for your work in this phase.


This assignment will be judged on the clarity, coherence, and compelling nature of your report -- exploring designs, selecting among them, and documenting solution quality -- along with the effectiveness with which you ground it in evidence.

What is the design? What alternatives did you consider (before and during testing)? Why did you choose this one (evidence from user research)? How well does it meet needs? [What might change?] What is key insight?

  • Do you communicate a clear rationale for your selected design?
  • Do you provide compelling explanations of why/how it is responsive to user needs? Are these explanations grounded in observations (either from this phase or the prior one)?
  • Do you provide meaningful comparison to some carefully curated alternatives? Are these grounded in evidence from needs or observations?
  • Do you document your design adequately? (This may be in an appendix, with key aspects in the body of the narrative.)
  • Have you identified shortcomings (or deliberate simplifications/omissions) in your design, where appropriate?
  • Have you excised unnecessary and irrelevant distractions?
  • Have you presented the package in a suitably professional way?

Note that comprehensive coverage is not one of the criteria against which your work will be measured. This is a class project, and in any case time management always requires tradeoffs. However, you should document concerns, shortcomings, or areas not adequately investigated, as well as indicating why these tradeoffs were made.

We will be using the form below to evaluate each team.

Design Development Phase Feedback (for display on website).pdf