I took on a new position as lead UX designer at an educational startup called Revature. They offer both in-person and online courses in computer programming to recent college graduates. I owned the online learning experience.
The online experience at that time involved having a user register and, once they have registered, a blank screen. When a user would first log in, there would be a blank screen with no advice or direction as to where to go. Once a user would register for a class, the homepage would be populated with content.
I had user research that showed that online students came from a variety of educational majors and backgrounds (only 1 out of 3 was a computer science major, for example). Some students knew how to code already, but most did not and, moreover, had no idea where to start. A significant amount of users would drop off at that point, but some would call the help desk. The help desk advisor would then assign the student a course depending on their conversation with the user.
Knowing this, I created an onboarding experience that involved a small amount of initial user feedback in the form of a simple self-evaluation of their own programming skills and from there recommend a path for new users.
The self-evaluation is optional and there are alternate paths for new students to just dive in or start from the beginning if they wish.
Depending on the user's responses, several recommended courses and quizzes would be highlighted for the user.
Users could preview a course's contents before enrolling so they have a good understanding of how much time courses would take.
I also had evidence that 80% of users who already knew how to code chose one particular course first and one of those options was to start with this one course. I also included another path for those users who were completely new to coding.
The goals for this solution were to reduce user confusion and dropoffs, lower the amount of help desk calls, and get students learning faster.
Our team consisted of myself as well as two project managers and a development team (the size of the team fluctuated), and two different timezones. We were able to keep in close touch thanks to tools like GitHub and Slack. In addition to the research and design I also did the frontend SASS coding.
Full prototype is below and also here. Thanks for looking.