University of Miami
interactive media website
To redesign the University of Miami Interactive Media website, our team had conducted a UX research by using the card sorting method.
Card sorting is a method used to help evaluate and design information architecture. It involves active participation between the researcher and user. During a card sorting session, users are asked to put cards into groups and rename those groups to what they think is best suited for the categories they’ve created.
For our study we conducted a non-directive and cautious type of card sorting method. This is an open card sort with no pre-defined categories that gives participants as much time as they need to complete the card sorting session.
We asked 24 participants to do fill out a pre-study questionnaire consisting of demographic and technology experience information. Then they sorted 43 cards into groups and renamed those groups. Lastly, they filled out a post study questionnaire. Equipments that were used during this research were laptops, phone for timing, pen and paper for note-taking.
The demographics of our participants are mainly caucasians, they count for half of the research pool(12 participants). The technology experience of our participants are divided into two groups, age over 40 and age under 40. From the graph, we can see that participants over the age of 40 rate themselves as competent whereas participants age under 40 rate themselves proficient.
According to the interviews, the participants ranked the hierarchy of categories in this order: program information, application, careers, research, alumni, donors, contact us.
What happens when a visitor enters your site is that they browse through the page from left to right, top to down. Therefore, when structuring the navigation, it is beneficial to have the information in the order of the prioritized categories to help visitor find what they're looking more efficiently.
With the participants data that we've gathered, we observed 10 categories: apply, admission, alumni, program information, contact us, international students, careers, donation, research, facilities.
Between the prominent categories, there are overlaps in content. Apply and admission have many of the same card items. Likewise, the research and facilities categories also share some of the same card items.
By observing the categories and their grouped content, we can understand how people organize information. In order to optimize the current site, we should first identify the different target audience who visit the site. They are prospective students, current students, faculty and staff, alumni and donors.