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User Interface and Experience – Milestone One Guidelines and Rubric

This milestone assignment is the first step in completing your project for this course. In this assignment, you will review the scenario below and complete the first deliverable for instructor feedback. Be sure to incorporate any feedback you receive into your project (due in Module Seven).

You work as a lead designer at a website design agency called User CentriX Services. Your manager has asked you to come to the aid of a novice designer who is facing challenges with their first website design project. The project is in its third week of development, and the designer is struggling to meet the client’s expectations. The novice designer has tested the initial wireframes and received negative feedback but is unsure how to remediate the issues.

Your task is to evaluate the novice designer’s work and develop the next steps for improving their designs. In this phase of the user-centered design process, the goal is to define the problem before you tackle the design. This is something that the novice designer seems to have missed in their work.

By developing a problem statement and conducting competitive research, you will be set up for success in the upcoming steps in the user-centered design process. It will directly inform your work in your next milestone (due in Module Four), in which you will create high-fidelity mock-ups of the website landing page.

Use the template linked in the What to Submit section to complete this assignment. Your report should include a detailed problem statement, an initial critique of the novice designer’s wireframes, and the results of your competitive research. See the Supporting Materials section below to review the full package of existing project materials, including a client brief, wireframes, and user feedback.

Specifically, you must address the following rubric criteria:

Problem Statement

Develop a detailed problem statement (User + Need = Goal) for the design project. Consider the following:
Be specific.
Allow room to explore.
Don’t include a solution.
Include empathy.
Critique: Articulate the design issues present in the novice designer’s wireframes based on how well they address or fail to address the problem statement. Specifically, you should:

Evaluate the novice designer’s use of visual design elements and principles. Discuss the following aspects in your critique: line, shape, space, emphasis, balance, alignment, contrast, repetition, hierarchy, scale, proximity, and Gestalt.
Evaluate the novice designer’s application of user experience principles. Based on what you have learned up to this point, discuss the following aspects in your critique: user-centricity, consistency, hierarchy, context, efficiency, and cognitive load.
Competitive Research

Investigate how other organizations solve this problem for their users by completing the provided competitive research table.
Document the findings of your research in the provided table. You do not need to use the same three competitors in each row, and you can use the same competitor in multiple rows.
Include an appropriate screenshot and short description for each of the competitors in each of the five categories. Those categories are service offerings, financial calculator, appointment scheduler, recent blog posts, and testimonials.
What to Submit
Using the Milestone One Template create your report and submit it for grading. If you reference any sources in your response, they should be cited according to MLA style.

Supporting Materials
The following resources support your work on this assignment:

Resource: GRA 470 Project Client Files
This zip file includes all the existing project materials that you need to evaluate for the novice designer. Download and unzip the following folder and files:

GRA 470 FutureFunds Logos
GRA 470 FutureFunds Client Brief
GRA 470 FutureFunds User Feedback
GRA 470 FutureFunds Wireframes

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