Sheridan Accessible Learning Portal

My Role

UI/UX Designer, Prototyping

Team Members

Yasmine Abdelrahman, Julia Correia,
Jaime Velasquez
(all designers)

Tools Used

Adobe XD and Procreate

Duration

36 hours

View Prototype

AT A GLANCE

Project Context

This project for Hackville 2021 focused on improving Sheridan College's Accessible Learning (AL) Accommodations application to help students with educational barriers reach their full potential.

🏆 Our product came in 3rd place out of 100+ participants.

Problem

The Accessible Learning Accommodations process has an onerous amount of in-person communication, requiring students to make appointments with professors who must accompany them to the AL office to fill out the mandatory paperwork.

Solution

In order to create a better system that is more accessible and convenient for students, we wanted to streamline and simplify this process. Here are the proposed recommendations we came up with to enhance the experience for everyone involved in the process.

📍

Students can track and save their application progress

📂

Accommodation records can be sent directly to their professors

🗓

Students can contact or schedule meetings with an advisor for inquiries

📚

Additional resources would be shared to ease uncertainties with the process

CHALLENGE STATEMENT

“How might we collaborate within our communities to reimagine learning and education so that no one is left behind and all youth and adults can realize their full potential?”

Student Pain Points

Due to the hackathon's 36-hour time limit, we focused on the pain points based on two of our team members' experiences with the Accessible Learning Accommodations process.

01

Back and Forth Communication

Students had to talk back and forth and make appointments with the AL staff until the paper work was completed.

02

Constant Need to Re-Update Status

Students had to contact their AL Advisor every term in order to forward their accommodation records to professors.

03

Time Constraints

Since applying for AL accommodations is a lengthy process, students felt overwhelmed while trying to adjust to a new school environment and semester.

Persona

Predicated on the problem and key information, a persona was created to identify and list the user's goals, needs and frustrations.

User Flow

We mapped out what users can expect on our platform based on the recommendations. This shows what steps are taken to complete the application process.

Low-Fidelity Wireframes

Our team created sketches of our ideas on how to improve the user journey flow for the application process for accommodations. We then created low-fidelity wireframes to plan out a student’s journey.

Branding

We followed Sheridan College's branding since we wanted to integrate our system into their website.

Style Tile

Prototype

A walkthrough of the new Sheridan Accessible Learning Portal's features to help students apply for learning accommodations, book appointments and get requests approved for test/exam accommodations at Sheridan College.

Application Tracker

This timeline helps students to see their application progress. It walks them through all the steps they need to take in order to have their application completed.

Upload Digital Documents

Students can now upload their required documents through the portal which eliminates the need to run around campus in order to print and deliver documents. This also allows them to easily access their documents at any time. 

Book Appointments

Students can see what dates and time slots are available to book an appointment with their Accessible Learning Advisor. This enables them to easily pick a date that works best for their schedule.

Simplified Communication

The "Requests" tab enables students to request test/exam accommodations, deadline extensions and equipment they might need. Their accessibility advisor and professor are notified in order to approve the request. This serves as a hub for students to request anything for their accommodations on one platform.

Accessibility Features

This portal has an accessibility menu to allows users to toggle among different settings to accommodate various needs. This includes bigger text, a screen reader and contrasting colours for people who are visually-impaired.​

Iterations

One of my teammates and I saw that there were areas for continued development in our work that was created within the hackathon’s 36-hour time limit. Here are the changes we made to improve the prototype.

Application Progress Tracker

Before ❌

  • The colours used for the timeline for the application process were potentially confusing

  • Using red for completed tasks can cause users to mistake them as incomplete, since red is associated with alerts and warning‍

After ✅

  • Using red and green which are commonly used to indicate incomplete and completed tasks respectively provides an instant visual aid

Confirming an Appointment

Before ❌

  • Showing the appointment times that are no longer available (in grey) is meaningless since users cannot book these sessions‍

After ✅

  • In order to reduce confusion and information overload, the taken time slots were removed