First project milestone: Empathize

The goal of this milestone is to generate a set of findings and design implications derived from the qualitative data you collected through observations, questionnaires, and interviews with your target population.

By now, your team has already conducted observations. You may conduct more observations, but it is not the priority. If you haven’t already, your team should come up with a list of 2-5 focal points. You will use these to scope the balance of your research (ideally they would have been done before conducting any observations, but the timing was tight).  For the focal points, students should try to individually generate 2-3 on their own, before coming together as a team to refine the final set.  Likewise for the questionnaire and the interview questions; they should be refined as a team only after the focal points are set.  

The number of respondents for your questionnaire and the number of people you interview will depend on your target population and project. Aim for at least 10 respondents and to conduct at least 3-4 interviews. You should likely be able to do more. The gold standard is to interview people in context.  Remember to use appropriate data collection ‘techniques’ such as audio recording. Any written notes and audio should be transcribed, and any other collected data (such as images) needs to be documented.

Each student should individually review all the data and come prepared to a team meeting to discuss the full set of data. Use affinity diagramming to synthesize the data into findings/themes. Once those are established, your team can then brainstorm possible key takeaways (implications for design).

Your team will report its findings in two ways: (1) with an in class presentation (see schedule for date), and (2) a separate report.

For the class presentation, your team will have 5 minutes to present your work and there will be an additional 5 minutes for  feedback from the instructors and your classmates. Your presentation should include a title slide (with project topic, team name, and student names), focal points, research methods in brief (including a description of you participants, methods, data collection, analysis approach), key findings, key takeaways. You can create slides in whatever software you want, but ensure that they can be pdf’d. These presentations will be strictly timed, so as to allow time for all teams during the class. Bring your presentation on a USB stick. One person from each team must arrive by 10:40 am to test their own laptop or to transfer their presentation to Joanna’s laptop.

The report is an extended version of the information that you presented in class. The main body of your report should be 3-5 pages. It should include sections for all the information mentioned above, many which will need to be expanded. Include things such as methodology details and additional data that did not fit into your presentation; for example, a table describing your interview respondents in detail, or more detailed analysis of the questionnaire data (e.g., charts),  and quotes from participants that help to illustrate a finding. Make sure that the findings reported are well supported by the data, i.e., it is easy for a reader to see the link between the data analysis and the findings. Additionally, your report needs to include a section that identifies each team member’s contributions: e.g. contacted participants, interviewed participants, analysed or transcribed dada, etc.This can be in a bulleted list for each student. Include appendices (no page limit) with your questionnaire, interview script, all your raw data (e.g., transcripts), an image of your affinity diagram, and signed consent forms, and any data analysis that doesn’t fit into the main body of your report.

Similar to the first interim-milestone, students need to submit both a pdf of the presentation and a pdf of their report in one single post to  Piazza before class. Please title your post as “First project milestone: Empathize