©2020 Built with love by Nick Howland.

degree project : education system : process_week 2

degree project : education system : process_week 2
February 6, 2015 nick howland

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Alright, so this week was all about research. Research, research, research. I began with competitor audits and started with Skillshare, which is arguably the most popular of the systems I’m researching. I listed out important interface elements that I noticed while perusing the site and put together a pros / cons list of using the site.


Interface Audit: 

Home Page-

  • pretty bare
  • top tracks = top class categories
  • trending classes = top, most popular classes
  • trending students = most popular projects

When You Sign Up

  • can sign up with Facebook = helps promote more social media interaction
  • “what are you interested in?”
  • have to choose 3 interests to continue
  • recommended for you
  • save 5 recommended classes to continue
  • takes you back to your classes

Class Page

  • introductory video
  • gives an overview of teacher course
  • unpaid users can only access this video, then prompted to enroll in class / pay when you try to watch other videos
  • the number of students, # of projects, # of reviews
  • home = overview of class and a few projects, related discussions, about the class, related classes

– Project Assignment

  • assignment = assignment
  • deliverable = what’s to be turned in
  • resources = links, etc
  • attached files

– Project Gallery

  • trending, most recent, most liked

Project Page

  • description of projects  (by students)…like bechance…
  • show process + final
  • constantly updating project…in same post field


  • basically a FAQ of sorts
  •  there are some teachers who hold open hours for students…and charge extra for it.
[spb_single_image image_size=”full” frame=”noframe” intro_animation=”none” full_width=”no” lightbox=”yes” link_target=”_self” width=”1/3″ el_position=”first”] [boxed_content title=”Pros:” type=”whitestroke” pb_margin_bottom=”no” width=”1/3″]

  • taught by professionals = credibility!
  • videos provide a way to actually see the professional at work
  • anyone can register
  • almost serves as an online portfolio for students
  • move at a more comfortable pace
  • simple to use
  • decent amount / lots of classes
  • fairly inexpensive when compared to universities / college tuition
  • can pay yearly, which is still less than the cost of a class at a university
  • can follow students on site + social media.

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  • not a whole lot of teacher interaction…need at least a bit more!
  • the comments serve as an area for crit…
  • -basically just students, mostly just one-sentence / one-word positive comments
  • -need to be more in depth and meaningful / involved.
  • structure of posting the projects is very basic
  • -it would be nice to separate the updates, maybe color code or tabbed? larger headlines maybe.
  • -just give the updates their own damn sections
  • maybe nice to separate process post from final project?
  • maybe use different “notebooks” for the sections of the project post? process and final tags / categories.
  • doesn’t really feel like a community
  • – maybe only allow a certain amount of people into each section?
  • -allows for a more personalized experience and makes it easier for teacher to interact with students.
  • anyone can teach…does this take away from credibility?
  • open enrollment= anyone can join at anytime.
  • -kind of overwhelming
  • no dealines? 
  • -no one is there to hold you accountable
  • -could prove to be a waste for some, since they may forget to do assignments or push it off
  • -deadlines may help with increasing instructor interaction
  • -helps with crit as well since everyone is in the same mindset
  • might be nice to place the comments / crit in the same section as the update / post it is about. 
  • maybe crit is inspired by soundcloud or USA Today’s website–inline comments! 
  • there aren’t any public profiles for the students…? or at least none with any worthwhile, valuable information.
  • -might make it seem even more social and community like. get to know a bit more about your students + studio-mates.
  • maybe on the profiles have “circles” of people others know that you know, like LinkedIn connections or on Google+
  • have more focused social media connections- like pinterest pins, instagram, etc.