Indulging Tomorrow's Scientists

Project Overview
Design a tablet app using focusing on NASA JPL missions for middle schoolers.
Challenge Title
Designlab Holiday Exchange 2021
When
Winter 2021
Role
UX Designer
In recent years, NASA has struggled to capture the attention of preteens and attributing it to the emerging interest of becoming a YouTube influencer. As a result, the company came with the challenge to reinvigorate preteens through a tablet app. For this project, my partner Chris and I collaborated over the course of a week to develop a solution.
View Solution
The Problem

Spaced Out

Since Neil Armstrong's first step on the moon, NASA remains a symbol of hope to the American people. However, in recent years, youth's interest in its programs has dwindled and look to social media influencers instead of the stars for aspiration. Knowing the importance of diversity in people and thought, NASA came together with Adobe to host a hackathon in attempt to revitalize preteen's interest in the company so that they can continue to inspire future generations.
The Challenge

Dream of the Stars

The goal of this project was to revive interest NASA as a potential career path for preteens.

The high level objective was:
  1. Design a tablet app unaffiliated with but informed by NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
My Role

Fit for a King

I collaborated with Chris Xenophontos as a UX designer on this hackathon over the course of a week in May 2021.
The Solution

Answer Key

Using Bloom's taxonomy of learning as a guide, we focused on helping users acquire knowledge, comprehend topics, and apply what they had learned. This took form in integrating the concepts users learn in the virtual world with the real, with the main features and screens we designed below.

Learning Inspired by NASA JPL Missions

To increase interest in NASA, users engage with a curriculum that is based on real NASA JPL missions. Each mission includes a series of experiments that users receive instruction through the app but conduct offline.

Voice Chat Collaboration

Users can collaborate on their experiments with friends, or otherwise known as lab partners, through voice chat. This further blends digital learning with the real while building connections with others who possess similar interests.

Improve Through Challenges

To infuse a sense of fun to the missions and encouraging ongoing use of the app, users can engage in different challenges pertaining to their experiments. These can also be completed with lab partners. Once completed, a user receives a virtual reward they can display in their lab.
Tablet Prototype

Ready for Lift-Off

The high-fidelity wireframes were then configured into a prototype on Adobe XD. This finally gave us the ability to send over our work to the judges.
Feedback Received

Room for Improvement

While we didn't place in the hackathon, we were fortunate to receive feedback from one of the judges and co-founder of Center Centre UIE, Jared Spool:
Reflections

Looking Back


Additional illustrations by Alex Muravev, Olga, and Tatyana from the Noun Project.
Primary illustrations by absurd.design