user research • interaction design • technology in developing countries
Low income schools in Zambia don't have enough money for books and teaching materials and qualified teachers are scarce, so it is economical to use education tablets which have text, audio, and activity based lesson plans for all grade levels. But, the technical literacy in Zambia is limited, so the adoption rate of the tablets is low.
As a volunteer in these schools, I noticed how poor the user interface was of the tablets being used, so I contacted the company, iSchool.zm, operating in the UK and Zambia, and offered my ethnographic research and user interface design skills to help them. I observed, interviewed, and worked with both students and teachers using the tablets. At the end of the study, I presented findings and re-designed wireframes to iSchool.zm.
I re-designed the app user flow taking into account Zambian's lack of icon comprehension, low literacy, the politics of tribal languages, and the primitive school environment (e.g. no wi-fi, no electricity, and dusty rooms).