Navigating around campus as a brand new student can be a very overwhelming experience, especially for those who haven't been on site before. The solution is an indoor-based way finding application that can allow new students to navigate their way around campus with the use of augmented reality.
Beacon is an indoor-based navigation application that is dedicated to helping new post-secondary students get around campus with the use of augmented reality.
To get a better understanding of the problem space, I did some primary research into first year experiences on campus and how students operated during their first few weeks. I had sent out a survey to current first year students. Upon completion of my initial survey, I have gained a significant amount of both qualitative and quantitative data. Using this data had allowed me to gather insight on user pain points and can give me an informed decision on what I was designing. I had gained a significant amount of both qualitative and quantitative data. Using this data had allowed me to gain insight on user pain points and gave me an informed decision on what I was designing.
To further supplement my research and understanding of the first year experience, I conducted in-person interviews with 8 first-year students, from varying programs. Taking all the insights from research and the participatory design workshops, I created a thorough user journey that highlighted the UX before, during and after downloading the app.
how might we
Before I began with designing any screens, I had mapped out the information architecture/user flow. By doing this it allowed to have a clear goal of what I was designing and how I can make the process of navigating the campus easier for newer students. Once the information architecture/user-flow was laid out, I began with roughly sketching out the UI. This was done so that I could quickly get my ideas down. I started with low-fi prototypes and tested them quickly with users to hash out how I thought the flow should work. Once I had worked out the high level overview, trying to sketch for AR proved somewhat difficult.
With this project I learned a lot about what it takes to design a product from the initial conceptualization to the final prototype. In hindsight, something that I would've done differently would be to have some form of an interactive prototype to formally test the design with my target users. In the future, once I gain more experience in the field of immersive technology, I would like to revisit this project again. This time by turning it into a real product using Unity's AR capabilities.