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User Experience Research & Design Team

What we do

The User Experience Research & Design (UXRD) team partners with CU Boulder units to improve the technology experiences of our students, faculty and staff. We’re a team of researchers, designers and content strategists who work closely with students and others at the university to identify and design improvements to CU’s tools and services. The UXRD team continues to support the efforts of the Unified Student Experience project to simplify and streamline the landscape of campus technologies for CU Boulder students. We believe the entire student experience is interconnected, so we seek to understand the complexity of this experience to create holistic, student-approved solutions with positive impact.

We primarily support the continued development of Buff Portal, CU Boulder’s student portal. Occasionally, we partner with other university groups to improve strategic and impactful user experiences.

Student-Centered Approach & Impact

 

How we do it

Conducting user research synchronously, asynchronously

  • Ethnographic interviews, focus groups and surveys
  • Field, diary and destination studies
  • Expert reviews and usability tests
  • Analytics and optimization experiments
  • Benchmarking and competitive analyses
  • Our team has success meeting both in-person and via Zoom
Student and UX researcher examining a design on an iMac computer.
A student design in an online whiteboarding tool

Designing the user experience

  • Facilitate design workshops and reviews
  • Create low and high fidelity prototypes, wireframes and interactive mockups
  • Content strategy support based on user feedback
  • Create style guides and iterate on best practices
  • Collaborate with CU’s Digital Accessibility Office to ensure accessibility of designs 
  • Align work with campus brand and identity
A paper design for a new mobile feature.

Communicating user research and design

  • Advocate for user needs, including the needs of  underrepresented voices from the CU Boulder community
  • Share learnings of user-centered design sessions to create personas, user journeys and storyboards
  • Conduct task analyses and prioritization to determine user requirements and “jobs to be done”
  • Provide user-centered content and experience maps
  • Share impact data visualizations and dashboards
Students and staff gathered in a room to hear about student needs for designs.

Who we are

Student Employees

  • Emrys Baldonado - UX Researcher
  • Cade Dannels - UX/UI Designer and UX Research support
  • Kyra Moran - UX/UI Designer and UX Research support

Staff

  • Tarah Dykeman - UX Researcher & Content Strategist
  • Courtney Fell - Lead UX Researcher
  • Paul O'Brian - Associate Director for Portals and User Experiences
  • Steve Wolf - Lead UX Designer
  • Open - UX Designer
 

Contact us