Collaborative creative writing tablet app for students to improve their skills and digital citizenship with their parent or teacher.

The app was released for iPads at the beginning of February 2020. The client noted that they already have encountered usability issues with the sign-up process. While the app has only attracted parents so far, the company sees great potential with educators and school districts.


Tablet App


Laura Frezza
Ellina DiSanto
Bunny Coulsen
Amy Yang
Phylicia Flynn

My Role

Domain Research
Usability Testing
UI Design


Research Synthesis
User Journey Map


9 weeks




How might we redesign the existing app to improve usability for parents while also expanding the features to be used within the classroom?

Business Goals

Expand user base to educators and school districts

Discover then resolve existing usability issues

Increase conversion rate

User Needs

Collaborate with students on creative writing

Review and leave feedback on their stories

Keep track of student progress

Scope & Constraints

Educator facing side of platform

Fully remote research/testing due to COVID-19

Client had existing brand

existing design

Existing sign up pageExisting home view showing teacher image and two groupsExisting group view showing two studentsExisting story review screen with blue section filled with text

market research

Along with domain research and a competitive analysis, we interviewed subject matter experts to gain a deeper understanding of their goals, behaviors, pain points, motivations, and frustrations.



2nd to 8th

grades taught


use tutorials and webinars
to learn new tools


feel confident that the interface should be intuitive


like using apps that help them track students’ performance

the Problem defined

Educators want to embrace the use of technology in the classroom but get discouraged by the amount of time it takes to setup their new account, their students’ accounts and to learn the new platform, without knowing if it will actually provide value in their classroom.


To fully understand what the pain points are in the existing sign up flow, we had a 60-minute workshop with our client to brainstorm and create an ideal flow.

From that point, we created a task flow outlining the steps and options  the user will now encounter during the sign-up.

possible solutions

Alternate Ways to Sign Up

Provide options to sign up with Google account or Facebook account. Also option to verify account through text or email.

Free Trial

Allow users to test out the product before committing to the subscription plans.

Onboarding Process

Create an onboarding process to guide the users how to use the app. Options to skip and view later.

More Guidance

Provide a support section within the app with FAQs and tutorials.


Through the usability test, we aimed validate the design solutions by creating specific tasks to be completed using our mid-fidelity prototype.



33 / 67

male to female



Task #1

You search for Kitchen Remodeling contractors and would like to receive a quote from the first contractor you find. How would you accomplish this?

Task #2

Your kitchen renovation will start in a few weeks. In order to stay on top of the progress, you want to make sure you’re receiving updates daily through the platform and via email. Show me how you would set these preferences.

Task #3

Now you’re halfway through your remodeling project. You want to check out a recent photo update of the cabinet installation that happened on Feb 7th. Show me how you would find that.

Task #4

Your other project, Hardwood Floor Installation, is now complete. You are pleased with the work and would like to leave a review. How would you go about reviewing the contractor for that project?

Pretty easy, pretty self explanatory.

completion rate


overall satisfaction
out of 5

key takeaways


Users felt like they could easily pick up how to use this app and the basic functions.

Extended Help & Support

Users liked having the help section accessible through the app. They also liked that they can revisit onboarding if they skipped it.

More In-Depth Information

Users were curious about best practices, the history of the company and the value proposition.

Progress Tracking

Users like being able to track progress and would like to see tracking at-a-glance. They also expressed concern about missing important alerts.


Sign-Up & Onboarding

Give users multiple options on how they can create an account

For security, users can verify account through email or text

Provide easy to read subscription plan information and an option to start a free trial

Provide a quick onboarding tour of the app with an option to skip or exit at any time

Account & Support

Notification indicator on account to alert users of missed items

Dedicated help section to keep users from having to google

Users can revisit the onboarding tutorial at any time

Option to view video tutorials for those less technically inclined

Creating New Groups

Floating action button makes popular commands easily accessible

Users set optional rewards when creating the group

Users can add students by selecting from the student list

Dashboard shows vital information about groups

Story Review

Students' profiles list most recent stories at top

Different colors indicate story's status

Mark-up tool makes it easy to highlight, underline or circle items on story

Select reward amount and leave feedback right from the story page

Check out the Prototype

next steps

Happy client equals happy design team. As we wrapped up our work, the client was impressed and said “where we you when I was working on the designs last year?”

Some interesting discovers were found during the research that were out of scope. Teachers expressed the need for a web app and the ability to sync with Google Classroom.

The UI design has not yet been vetted. The final usability test was conducted using mid-fidelity wireframes and the addition of images, colors and real text could change the outcomes.