Archive — 2021

Lessons on readability and bias — Reflections from the UCD Gathering conferenceWebsite and Communications Blog

Back in October, I had the opportunity to attend the UCD Gathering conference, a new virtual event for practitioners of user-centred design in all its forms. Over on my work blog, I have published the first of two posts reflecting on what I learned.

This first post covers two themes:

  • Being aware of bias, and other cognitive considerations
  • Improving readability of content

The post also mentions my own session at the conference, about our user research into the needs of staff and students working with course materials online. The Learn Foundations project has proved fortuitous in that it has helped schools move their teaching online and prepare for hybrid teaching in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

Comment

Service design specialUX Glasgow

Service design illustrations

I will be speaking at next week’s UX Glasgow meetup. This month it is a service design special, coinciding with Services Week.

My presentation will be based on my blog post Service design and the Mario complex, exploring the similarities and differences between user experience and service design.

It’s part of a bumper line-up of speakers, including sessions about the Scottish Approach to Service Design, some excellent research into the service design community in Scotland, and a student project imagining the future of Glasgow.

It’s a ticketed virtual event, so sign up to be part of what should be a brilliant session.

Comment

Access for all — my final plea for human-centred designLizzie Cass-MaranWebsite and Communications Blog

Last month our brilliant colleague Lizzie Cass-Maran left our team after more than 10 years. In her final blog post for our team’s blog, she has written this plea to keep humans at the centre of all our decision-making.

For the past few years I’ve been working with Lizzie, I’ve always been impressed at the impact and quality of the work she has delivered in often challenging circumstances. She is a key reason why Website and Communications has such a strong user-centred culture.

Moreover, her impact stretched far beyond our own team. She influenced human-centred approaches across the entire university. She has played a genuinely leading role in our communities of practice. The effective digital content training that she has designed ensures that our content editors will continue to create well-written content that meets users’ needs.

Most recently, she did most of the heavy lifting in a project to revolutionise the university’s editorial style guide. The outcome of this is that, for the first time, we have a unified style guide that is designed for use across all content, print and digital, being managed across organisational silos.

Our team genuinely will not be the same without her.

Comment