Project Type: HCI Course Project / Mobile App Development
Timeframe: Fall 2014 / 5 months
My Contributions: User Interviews, Mockup Design, User Personas, Usability Testing
Collaborators: Karen Aguar, Mitch Rice, Neel Rana
In the US, an increasing number of students are taking out federal loans to pay for their college education. This has led to an estimated $1 trillion in outstanding student loan debt among 38 million borrowers. My team set out to further understand the motivations and behaviors of these actors by conducting user research, brainstorming ideas, and finally designing a system that addressed problem. The final deliverable was a beta version of an Android application.
Creating an application that connects students to a debt-free version of themselves.
90+ students surveyed
6+ one-on-one interviews
Our research focused on the 3 vital stakeholders in this problem domain:
Graduate, Undergraduate, Alumni
High School: Those who will be attending college in the near future and plan on taking out loans.
Secondary: Financial Institutions
Directly or indirectly provide loans
Federal groups, Banks, Financial Aid Offices
May assist students in loan payment
SURVEY: We surveyed a total of 97 high school, college undergrad, graduates, and alumni. In this pool, more than 50% of them had outstanding student loan debt. We also saw that high school students expected to accumulate less than $10,000 in loans. However, the average college graduate accumulated 3x more than that amount.
INTERVIEWS: After interviewing at least 3 people from each stakeholder group, we found that current students are occupied with schoolwork or enjoying college life and were not actively planning how they will pay off their loans, nor did they think about how much interest they will accrue.
10+ lab participants
20+ hours logged
Keystroke Level Evaluation
Users are able to calculate monthly payments based on their desired pay-off date.
Users are able to calculate pay-off date based on their desired monthly payment.
Users are motivated by the “fun fact” on what they can save if they increased payments and reduced the interest amount.
82% of users found the app easy to use.
82% of users found the app financially useful.
81% of users felt motivated by the fun fact feature.
Users completed tasks within an average of 13.29 seconds.