Alisa Price
Caitlin Hartung,
Jayla Corley
Zoe Szoke

My role
Project Lead

My contributions
1. Building project timeline and
scope of work
2. Conducting user interviews
3. Wireframing & Prototyping
4. Creating client presentation

Two week sprint

Tools used
Figma, Miro, Zoom, Sketch

Project Overview

The Client

Mucktracker is a media literacy-focused platform that allows students to survey coverage of newsworthy events and compare reporting from a range of diverse sources.

The Challenges

No previous core persona work had been done which led us believe that the current information hierarchy of the website wasn’t backed by user research.  

The website was still in its development stage.

01. Identifying Business Goals

Initial Client Meeting

In our initial meetings with the client, we expected to be given high level goals they wanted us to focus on in our short amount of time working together. Being that the website and company was still in its development stage, the client's made it clear that our work was seen as an added value and asked us to identify where the current problems were and how to solve for them.

Our three high level goals were as follows:

To identify the target audience.

Understand the usability problems at hand.

Apply information hierarchy of the website in a way that accurately addressed the user’s issues.

Early Pivot

The client provided a list of names and contact information for users they wanted us to interview which consisted of past colleagues and close friends. We saw the biases this might bring to our research so we decided to work backwards and choose our own users based on the general understanding that Mucktracker's target audience would be educators who teach or are open to teaching media literacy.

02. Initial Research & Synthesis

User Interviews

In order to successfully identify our target audience, we conducted user interviews to gain a better understanding of who our users are and how we could address their needs and pain points through design.

We asked:

What does media literacy mean to you?

What are your feelings on current events and news cycles in general?

What factors play a part in whether you continue using a learning software?

We found:

Key Insights:

Our understanding:

1. Users who found the education of media literacy within the classroom to be a priority ranged from high school teachers to undergraduate professors.

This insight gave us a better understanding of who our target audience is which would help us in narrowing down participants for future interviews and tests.

2. With the rise of social media, users feel that students are having a harder time differentiating with is fact and what is opinion.

What this insight did was reinforced our understanding that there is a need for Mucktracker and that it could be successful in assisting educators with teaching media literacy.

3. Educational resources need to be able to reach all students in different levels of learning.

Our understanding of this insight was that we would need to design a feature that would categorized lessons based on level of education.

03. Understanding the user


With these key insights, we were able to identify the target audience. We created our persona, Rachel, who humanized the needs, pain points and acted as a constant reminder of who we were designing for.

How might we make Mucktracker a platform that Rachel finds to be reliable enough to use within her curriculum?

04. Identifying the usability issues

Usability Testing

In order to plan out our redesign of the website's information hierarchy, we needed to understand the current problems at hand when navigating the Mucktracker website. Our goal for conducting usability tests was to uncover user pain points and begin brainstorming ways to solution for them.


Navigation Bar

Sign Up Page

Curriculum Connections Page


Through competitive analysis, I found that most established educational websites categorize their lessons by Subjects, Grade and more. Therefore, I designed the hi-fi wireframe to do the same.

Users wanted lessons to meet their students where they are

05. Testing for Validation & Feedback

High-Fidelity Prototype Testing

With the time constraint at hand, we went from low-fidelity sketches to high-fidelity wireframes knowing we'd test it and ideate based on user feedback. We gained interesting insights by testing the prototype which led to helpful recommendations for the client before wrapping up the project.

Insight: With the redistribution of information, all users were able to clearly summarize Mucktracker’s offerings from the homepage.

Recommendation: Continue testing the information on the homepage with other target users.

Insight: Users were confused as to why they were joining a waitlist when signing up for the platform.

Recommendation: Add a short message on the homepage and sign up page notifying users that the website is still in developmental stages.

Insight: There is still slight confusion with the grouping of secondary navigations.

Recommendation: Conduct an open card sort.

Insight: Users liked the organization of the page but felt more categories need to exist in order to consistently use the platform in their curriculum.

Recommendation: Once more content has been created, develop more categories.

06. The Client's Response

Implementation within website

Shortly after our client presentation, Mucktracker implemented a few of our recommendations within their website.

Navigation Bar

As recommended, Mucktracker reorganized their navigation bar to include the most used pages within the primary nav.

Sign Up Page

Mucktracker implemented our recommendation of making the Sign Up page cleaner and also ensuring it is kept within the website instead of an additional tab.

Curriculum Connections Page

Mucktracker categorized their lesson plans by topic and grade level as suggested.

07. Retrospective & Next Steps

Being given the space to work in a real world setting played a huge role in my development as a researcher and designer. My team and I were given the opportunity to filter through and select which UX methods and tools were necessary to complete a task, which strengthened my understanding of the UX process itself. 

Additionally, we learned the value of open communication with the client and how to professionally create boundaries when it comes to explaining what is in our scope of work as UX Designers.

If we had more time, my next steps for this project would be to continue to test and conduct an open card sort to get a better understanding of how users naturally move through the navigation. Ultimately, I'd like to get to a an information hierarchy that is an intuitive experience that solves for users needs.