Tempo is a co-created, best-in-class, competency-based learning experience within the world's largest organization of universities and colleges. It was created to provide millions of adults with the opportunity to earn their degree on their terms.
Freedom makes competency-based learning appealing, but it can also be overwhelming for students.
Students have the ability to move throughout the program at their own pace while choosing whichever competencies make sense to them at the time. Viewing an entire Master's program at once can be incredibly overwhelming. How might we create a tool that helps students feel empowered to manage their learning and stay on track?
Creating a guided experience to manage the process will empower students to prioritize, make changes, get to their learning faster, and complete the program more quickly.
I collaborated with GoKart's growth team to determine which metrics we could use to understand the pace of students moving through the program.
During this phase, we nailed down all of the possible use cases. I took pencil to paper to sketch the user journey and potential solutions.
In order to get feedback quickly, I tested paper and clickable prototypes internally at GoKart. The results of rapid prototyping and internal interviews led to a slightly more polished prototype to walk through with existing students.
I created clickable prototypes and variations using Sketch and Invision.
The GoKart team and I created a script and a list of all of the questions for students. During the interviews, I prompted the students with tasks, watched their actions, listened to their thought process, and asked them more general questions about their experience with the platform and competency-based learning. The interviews lead to a set of guiding principles for the tool.
Most students admit to not being very "tech savvy," and value guidance from the coaches and the platform.
Tempo students are busy with work and family, our primary goal is to get students to their learning as quickly as possible.
Flexibility is what drew students to Tempo and competency-based learning. Students want to easily build and edit their plan based on what's most relevant.
Everyone we interviewed preferred the version of the test that visually reflected their progress throughout the term.
Based on feedback from our prototyping phase, I created a guided solution that breaks down more complex tasks: building a learning plan for the term, getting to today's learning quickly, and editing learning with confidence.
Building a customized learning plan
At the beginning of each term, students are prompted to select competencies and create a learning goal to stay on track. There is a minimum number of competencies a student can take in a term to remain in good standing with their program. This phase guides students to an acceptable number of competencies with a friendly voice and interactions.
Once a student has created their learning plan, they're ready to get started. The goal is to provide an at-a-glance view of their learning plan and progress, get them to their competencies quickly, and encourage them to keep up the good work. Here, students have the option to create personal deadlines and are notified if they're falling behind.
Editing a customized learning plan
After talking to students, we learned that they're reluctant to edit their learning plan because they're afraid they'll make a mistake. To remove the intimidation, we created a separate edit functionality that guides students through the process without letting them fall below their minimum requirement.
The entire Tempo Learning team worked hard to make sure that this was the most integrated and user-focused release. Though we don't currently have the analytics to support our hypothesis, we were pleased to have immediate, unsolicited praise and feedback from our users.
Thank you to Brendan, Lacey, Kris, Jen, Kelly, Elli, and entire Tempo team. You're amazing and I adore working together.