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IA Schematic - P3 VIBE Arts Webpage Schematic (1)-1_edited.jpg

VIBE Arts

Project Type

Group Information Architecture Analysis & Report (Class Project)

Role

Card sorting interviews

Low fidelity sketches
Copywriting and editing

Prototyping

Duration

Approximately 2 Months

Our task was to assess, test, and make recommendations to improve the information architecture for the desktop website of a nonprofit organization. 

VIBE-Logo-Colourful-Outline-Final.png

Context

VIBE Arts provides access to arts education to under-resourced populations. Their website is used to share information with the public, but we found a mismatch in the organizational structure and what users of the website need, as well as an ambiguous labelling system.

Analysis

We completed a context analysis of types of users, stakeholders, and modes of engagement; 

and a content analysis using the Noah's Ark method. I worked on defining the user groups and creating page schematics. 

VIBEArts Schematics long.png

Page Schematics

Initial Information Architecture

Using this analysis, we were able to construct a diagram of the existing information architecture. Elements were repeated in multiple areas, and labels held organizational jargon that was not friendly to new users.

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Research

To learn about users' interactions with VIBEArts' website, we performed three rounds of research at different stages of the process: tree testing, think aloud interviews, and card sorting. 

Tree Test

Tree Testing

We used Optimal Workshop to understand the routes users expect to take when searching for content. We learned that misleading and ambiguous labelling was a prevailing issue.

Think-Aloud Interviews

From two interviews we learned that users could not find what they were looking for, where they expected it. They could not tell where in the website they were and how to return. 

Card Sorting

We returned to Optimal Workshop to run card sorting with five participants. We were able to triangulate and condense to 6 major patterns in user pain points on the website.

Recommended Information Architecture

With these suggestions in mind, we proposed an improved global navigation with clarified labels.

Recommendations

The themes that appeared in our card sort exercise allowed us to locate prevalent issues in the website’s navigation that impede the ability of target user groups to successfully engage with the organization. Our suggestions fell within two categories:

Improve Global Navigation

Issues arise as users cannot find items located as expected.

  • Add a top-level ‘Programs’ category

  • Redistribute ‘Our Team’ category

  • Restructure ‘News’ page 

  • Add ‘Our COVID-19 Response’ category

  • Remove Documents from navigation

  • Restructure Arts Effect category

Global Navigation Improvements

Clarify Labelling

Ambiguous labelling and unclear jargon was a major issue.

  • Clarify Volunteer roles

  • Replace ambiguous labels with concise language

Labelling

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Prototyping

We used three user scenarios for the prototype, representing the determined user groups. I created hand-drawn low-fidelity sketches to ensure our suggested architecture met expectations, then used Balsamiq to create a clickable medium fidelity prototype.

Medium Fidelity Prototype

Low-Fidelity Sketches

I represented the Volunteering, Partnering, and Donating user groups with three low-fidelity flows. 

Lessons

​​This first project on information architecture opened taught me that seemingly minute details strongly affect users' abilities to navigate a website. As we delved further into content analysis, we realized that many issues affected navigation, and had to decide how to narrow down our analysis without missing important details. 

I learned to expect that every user approaches a website in a different manner. The card sorting exercise many insights as to the varied way users expect to find information.

This project was completed for the course INF2170: Information Architecture at the University of Toronto. The group consisted of myself, Aisha Aminu, Ariana Cuvin, and Evan Rees. 

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Acknowledgements

This project was completed Fall 2020 in INF2170: Information Architecture at the University of Toronto. The group consisted of myself, Aisha Aminu, Ariana Cuvin, and Evan Rees. 

Medium Fidelity Prototype

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