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With our app structure in draft form and our development team in place we began discussing the more intricate details of the project, mapping out our timeline for development, production, and testing ahead of what we assumed would be a lengthy process for marketing and data protection clearance.

First up we set out a general task list in Trello so we could collaborate on our production flow. Next up was a development environment provided by Ben to built our application before porting it over to our internal servers. Once we were all fired up, Ben set to work constructing the foundations for our app using WordPress, MySQL and Ionic. During this time the rest of us set about taking our app’s draft structure and continuing to refine the layout, user interface, and graphical design elements, taking our existing L·E·A·R·N cards and translating them in a digital equivalent.

After the successful design and deployment of the Beyond Flipped L·E·A·R·N cards, we knew that the next step would be to make them easier to obtain. To make them easier to get hold of we made a print-your-own version that we published online. The natural next incarnation was a mobile app. Something that could reduce a reliance on the lab to create and distribute decks of physical cards. Instead, anyone with access to a smartphone or tablet could have a working set of L·E·A·R·N cards for absolutely no cost to them. This was our aim, and once published, the app and virtual cards within, would be available to a global audience, and not staff and students within Coventry University.

We wanted the virtual L·E·A·R·N cards to work in exactly the same fashion as their physical equivalents, therefor the app would display the cards in their separate sets, and the user would swipe left and right to view each set. Swiping up and down would allow the user to cycle through the cards in a given set. Once a suitable card from each set is decided on, the user would be able to export and print a PDF/image of their learning design. The export would mimic a selection of L·E·A·R·N cards placed on their accompanying ‘Play Mat’, upon which the user could add notes or supporting text.

An early example of the user flow.

With a strong user-experience flow established for the cards, the next stage was to flesh out the ‘Weekly Tips’ section, which would include push notifications and a dedicated menu ‘drawer’, accessible via swiping from the right side of the screen. From there, users would be able to access a reverse chronological list of previously posted tips.

With the structure in place and with Ben creating the back-end framework, the app was beginning to come to life! Time to set the ball rolling internally for our server requirements…

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Beyond Flipped App: Progressive Design Thinking

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