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KP2000: Learner Interface Redesign
PCD2001 winner

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Case study contents:

Introduction  1
The Users  2
Prior State  3
Solution  4
Attributes   5


Developed for, and 
in association with:
KnowledgePlanet, Inc.

Performance Attributes

1. Supports performers through best practice processes

  • Embedded instruction on each page reminds performers of best practices.
  • Best practices can be added by individual customers through "policy statements" that are embedded at relevant points, intrinsically associating best practice description with the tasks rather than having such descriptions outside the application.
  • For planning tasks, such as when the learner is developing their annual performance goals, the application provides specific structure, description and examples to help the learner formulate appropriate goals.

Numbered steps and instruction

2. Establishes, or aids in establishing, goals

  • The To Do List draws the user's attention to specific tasks that are important to them (based on their current schedule and upcoming activities), indicates the level of urgency, and helps the user prioritize what to work on.
  • Searching large catalogs of courses, assessments, and curricula is made easier by layering the search actions and grouping the search criteria to help the user think about how best to find what they are looking for.
  • The work is structured via tabs and menu pages, which use familiar task-focused language and descriptions to help the user understand what is possible to do.
  • Navigation and menu structures for each role (e.g. learner and approver) are specific to that role, so conflicting goals are reduced or eliminated.

3. Minimizes terminology translation or interpretation

  • Replaced hard-to-understand terminology in the interface with more familiar terms (e.g. when searching the course catalog, replaced "course type" with "topic"; replaced "transcript" with "my current schedule"; replaced "forecast" with "request").
  • Improved the button labels to better explain the action that results from clicking them.
  • Created facilities that allow greater customization of on-screen text to match organization-specific language that users are familiar with.

Improved language

4. Provides access to supporting and learning resources

  • Supporting information is provided through a layered approach, including improved field labels, short instruction on each page in the interface, and links to more detailed information.
  • Replaced the previous help system (a long PDF file) with context-sensitive help topics linked to each task in the application.
  • Created facilities that allow the help system to be extended in order to add or change pages over time, allowing the customer to link business-specific help to the standard help topics.

5. Focuses on task(s), processes, and the natural flow of work

  • The grouping of options in the menu pages reflects real tasks in the work environment, with more frequent tasks appearing at the top of each menu where they are most visible.
  • For more complex or infrequent tasks (such as the development of performance goals), the task is organized around a numbered sequence of steps to guide the user through all required actions, and instructions are provided so the user does not have to remember what to do.

6. Stretches the PCD/EPSS paradigm

  • Provides intrinsic support in a generic product that needs to be flexible for use in very different customer work environments
  • Achieved the product redesign very quickly by allowing performance-centered design to lead the development process and work actively within the development lifecycle


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KP2000: Learner Interface Redesign

introduction     the users     prior state     solution     attributes


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Duane Degler 2001-2008