Generate STEM-Away® UX improvements with a focus on user awareness of tools, demonstrate using wireframes

Learn UX research techniques and execute for a real-life platform.

This is a pilot project which will help evolve the Mentor Chains® platform. In addition to the display of technical and soft skills through the 1-click® Resume, participants can elect to be showcased on our social media pages.

Join the UX-1 Group to receive all project announcements, including the call for student leads and other student participants.

Project Overview:

  1. Collect quantitative & qualitative data from surveys.

    Brainstorm as a team to come up with effective survey questions. Design a model for collecting user feedback. The model should include a mix of interviews and strategic placements of the questionnaire. Collect the survey data.

  2. Provide STEM-Away® UX improvement recommendations with a focus on user awareness of STEM-Away® tools

    Use the "User Story -> Real Problems -> Solutions -> How Might We " method illustrated in this excellent Medium Article to develop wrireframes to demonstrate the UX recommendations. Tools: UIPRINT, Figma, Maze (subject to change)

  3. Thematic & Sentiment Analysis of survey data.

    Develop recommendations for future project teams based on thematic analysis of the survey data. Define strategies for STEM-Away® UX Research. Learn more about Thematic Analysis.

    Design a sentiment analysis framework/tool. Results from the tool will be incorporated as a KPI (Key Performance Indicator) for the platform. Lexicon Based versus Machine Learning.


  • UX Research & Principles
  • UX Design Tools
  • Data analysis
  • Entrepreneurial skills
  • Communication
  • Teamwork
  • Leadership & Mentoring (project & task leads)


Summer 2020.


  • Prior experience with UX Research & Principles required for project leads.
  • Attendance of a platform orientation session. Sessions will be available on a regular basis at STEMCasts®.
  • Activity on the STEM-Away® forums can be used to display familiarity with the platform if you cannot attend an orientation session.


Interview strategy details to jump start the project

Users will complete a questionnaire to evaluate their experience. It is anticipated ten questions will be presented using a 1 to 5 Likert scale and three questions will include free form text. Questions will target overall enthusiasm, test if they understood how to use the product, collect feedback on meaningfulness and effectiveness of tools, and identify any stumbling blocks. Tips on Likert Scales from SurveyMonkey®.

Step 1:
The first step of the UX research process is to interview the users about prior experience with career networks. The intention of this step is to put the users into 3 levels: novice, intermediate, expert. This information will be used to guide the analysis of collected feedback. Questions will cover many aspects including:

  • Prior experience with mentoring platforms and/or internships.
  • Prior experience with resume builders and job boards.
  • Prior experience with online webinars and podcasts.
  • Level of ease with online collaboration.
  • Current methods of networking with students and mentors.

Step 2:
The second step of the research process is to place users in front of the platform and ask them to “think aloud” as they explore the platform. The intention of this step is to see if users can figure out the flow and overall goal of the platform. Users will have access to the tips and video tutorials in the Getting Started category.

The second step will comprise of both quantitative and qualitative analysis. Hotjar heatmaps and recordings will be used to track the movement of the users. Analysis of exit points will be done to find the spots where users have difficulty in navigation. The analysis will be qualified by the “level” of the user. Additionally, YouTube will be used to track the amount of viewing time of the videos in the support forum.

Some possible questions are listed below. The team will come up with the final questionnaire.

  • What was your initial reaction to the site? What did you like and what did you dislike?
  • Do you use something similar to this website and why?
  • Which topic or topics in the support forum did you find most useful?
  • Which was the most difficult step to understand?

Step 3:
The final step is a continuation of the second step, with a deeper dive into each of the career tools: -click® Resume, STEMCasts® and Mentor Chains® Projects.