IXD301: User Research – Surveys

User Research for my elements project

Before I create user personas for my elements project, it is important for me to get to know real potential users. Through research, I found that doing surveys was one of the most effective ways to quickly gain the information I needed from a wider audience.

“Survey Swap”

I found this website called survey swap. It allows you to post your survey and get real responses by real people. At first, I was sceptical of this and didn’t think I would get any responses. It works by completing other people’s surveys to earn credits. You then use these credits to create your own survey. The more credits you have, the more respondents you can get, and you can boost your post, so it’s seen by more people.

I created my survey on Google Forms and aimed it at parents. It included the following questions:

How old is your child?

Does your child learn about the periodic table?

What parts of the periodic table are relevant to your child?

Does your child find educational apps useful when learning?

If yes, what apps do they use?

What makes an educational app good?

What is the best way for your child to learn?

What device does your child use the most?

 

Most of these questions were multiple choice and you can see the options I provided by looking at the form:

https://forms.gle/rEuG4nDnHfT2mnDs9

 

 Analysing the results

I didn’t expect to get many if any, responses. However, I was pleasantly surprised to gain 21 responses within 24 hours. The form is still open to responses so I will update this post if some results change.

The majority of responses said their child was 7 years or younger. Although this is younger than my target audience, the results will still be beneficial. Due to the younger age, many said their child has not been learning about the periodic table but there was still a percentage that did.

When I asked what parts of the periodic table were relevant to their children, the element names were the highest result. This was not surprising as they are at the age of learning science at a basic level. The element symbols and atomic weight were the second most popular. Followed by the arrangement and atomic number. This was useful to see as it shows me the information I should include in order of importance when adding content to my app.

I then asked if educational apps came in useful for their children when learning. Many people said they don’t use them which did come as a surprise. I think the reason for this may be the lack of good educational apps. I know that through my research I found a lot of apps that weren’t engaging, interactive, or enjoyable, putting people off using them. After finding this out, it motivates me to make my app as enjoyable as possible for users.

The next question was asking what apps their children have used. “ABCmouse” was a comment one person made. I looked into it, and it looks like a fun app for children. They have activities, books, and games to keep users engaged and interested in what they are learning. It appears easy to use and has bright fun colours and characters which will appeal to the target audience. These are all things I want to achieve when designing my app.

Some of the responses for what makes an educational app good include: “Interacting, curriculum, being fun but good for learning and easy functioning”. I agree with all these statements and will be sure to include them in my work.

I asked what the best way for their child to learn is. The two winning answers included games and learning by doing. I assumed these answers would be at the top because children enjoy games and it’s a fun way to learn. Therefore, I will focus on the fun aspect of my app and make sure it is interactive.

Lastly, I asked what device their child uses the most. The top answer was an iPad. After getting this result, I think it is best for me to prototype on an iPad as this is what the target audience will be viewing the app on.

 

Overall, I am very happy with how my research turned out. I learnt a lot more about my users, including some things I didn’t expect. This will allow me to design better with my users in mind. It also means I can get started with my user personas. I would recommend the survey swap website and I will continue using it in the future for user research.

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