IXD303 – Week Six: The Design Sprint

Today in Paul’s class, we got into groups and did a miniature version of a design sprint, for which we creating a solution to busy a&e departments in hospitals.

Design Sprints

A design sprint is a time-constrained process that uses design thinking, when creating a new product. Th process has five stages, and five separate days.

The ProblemĀ – hospital pressures: NI health service still reeling from the effect of the pandemic.

How might we ease the pressure on accident and emergency departments?

Six Sprint Stages

  1. understand, explore
  2. define, focus
  3. ideation, tinker
  4. decide, focus
  5. prototype, make
  6. validate, focus

Product Ideas

  • input your symptoms into an app
  • it tells you if you need to go to a+e
  • if you do, it gives you an estimated waiting time or a number in the queue
  • gives you a map of the hospital
  • a virtual assistant before you are seen by a doctor

Our Question

How can we improve waiting conditions in A&E?

Goal: to reduce time spent waiting in the emergency room, and reduce unnecessary visits. We also want to reduce stress and anxiety in patients.

Signals: improved overall satisfaction when visiting A&E. Less people going to A&E that don’t need to be there. Less people waiting in waiting rooms.

Metric: rating patient satisfaction tracking numbers of people that go to A&E and don’t need to be there.


  • effortless
  • calming
  • reassuring
  • trustworthy

Pick a Target

Our most critical target is reducing waiting times in hospitals, and allowing self-assessment.


As a group, we each drew up individual wireframe ideas for our app.

This was my page:

These were everyone else’s wireframes:

We decided to use a variety of strong features from everyone’s wireframes and create one final sheet with all the best ideas:

Mapping User Journeys

Next, we used sticky notes to create a journey map for our app’s users. This allowed us to fully see all the pain points of users, as well as good points and all the parts in between. It gave us a better understanding of what the user would require when using this app, and what they are missing without the app.


Today’s class was very informative and interesting. I found out a lot about what it takes to create a user journey map, as well as understanding what design sprints are and how beneficial they can be – especially if they are used over five days instead of one. I really enjoyed today’s class, as it gave us a break on our current work and let us look outside the box a bit, and allowed us to get a clear and new head for a brand new project, which can be very helpful in terms of creativity.

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