UNIVERSITY HEALTH SERVICES
Deliverable: User research, Poster of final concept
Role: User researcher
Skills: Contextual inquiry, Recruiting and interviewing, Affinity diagramming, Experience modeling, Storyboarding
Duration: 8 weeks
Collaborators: Jason Chen, Sherry Wang, Alex Tsai, Sauvik Das
Mapping the current experience of Carnegie Mellon University's Health Services center
Carnegie Mellon University tasked us with researching the current student experience of the University Health Services center.
KEY RESEARCH FINDINGS
When it comes to health, students are grossly misinformed
Through in-depth user research, we discovered that there is a general lack of awareness of and engagement with what University Health Services does and does not do for its student customers. Students are largely unaware of what the University Health Services has to offer them, such as education on health topics and primary care services. Some students believe the center operates like an ER room. It does not. Others assume that there are no medical services offered whatsoever when in fact there are many. Due to this misinformation, many students that we interviewed reported going straight to local hospitals and doctors.
Current programs to educate students are inaccessible and hard to find
A misunderstanding of the student health insurance process was a major theme in our research. However, we distilled this theme into a larger issue: Students are not educated on what the health center has to offer, nor is there a support system for learning how to accomplish certain health-related tasks such as signing up for health insurance. Students are not accessing current health education programs offered through the center because they are not accessible or discoverable.
University Health Services Interactive Lessons
University Health Services does offer educational programs on wellness and health-related topics such as STD-prevention and birth control. However, there is no central system for students to access or find out about these programs. Other health-related topics, such as how to sign up for student health insurance, are not supported by the University Health Services. Our solution is to put these educational programs online where students can access them. In addition, certain topics should be added to the curriculum, such as how to sign up for insurance.
PERFORMED A CONTEXTUAL INQUIRY
We Interviewed a range of individual–not just users–to see the 'big picture'
We did not just interview students, University Health Services' main user group. We also gathered the perspectives of the following people:
- A student health promotions officer
- A resident Assistance of a dorm building
- Domestic and international students
- A high-level administrative officer within University Health Services
SYNTHESIZED INTO AN AFFINITY DIAGRAM
We synthesized interview data into major themes and relationships
CONSTRUCTED FLOW & CULTURAL MODELS
We modeled all of the service-level interactions to find breakdowns
We created cultural and flow diagrams of the system.
- Cultural model: A diagram of the values and beliefs that influence involved parties and establish constraints for any design solutions
- Flow model: A diagram of the flow of information and data across the people, places, and even machines involved in the system
We ideated as many solutions as possible before evaluating each one
After coming up with many different ideas for different user scenarios, we used a rigorous selection process to evaluate each idea.