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ENJOY KOREAN

User Experience Design

Build a Language Learning App by Conducting UX Design Case Study

 A non-traditional learning app that teaches the Korean language using Korean media such as K-pop, K-drama, and K-webtoon with an emphasis on building a habit.

Enjoy Korean Cover Photo.png

DATE

Summer 2022

ROLE

UX Designer

PROJECT

Enjoy Korean

DELIVERABLES

User Survey & Analysis

Information Architecture

Usability Testing

USER RESEARCH

Challenges

A study found that 36% of language learners quit halfway.

 

It became clear that what’s important is that users need to be persistent and must put in the time to make progress.

Solutions

  • Learn in Context - Engage in learning with your favorite Korean songs, comic book, and drama.
     

  • Build a Routine - Form a habit and make language learning effortless
     

  • AR Translation - Enhance the Korean learning experience by incorporating a way for users to engage directly with real objects.

{ Design Process }

This is the design process I followed for this project.

Design Process  Deliverables.png

Emphasize

First things first, I conducted a competitive and feature analysis of the Korean learning platforms in the market.

 

Then, I surveyed and interviewed language learners to gain insight into their motivation and pain points.

{ Competitive Analysis }

Many apps are geared towards beginners and are being used to supplement the user’s study. HelloTalk is great for practicing, Memrise for vocabulary, and Teuida for dialogues.

Competitive analysis of direct and indirect competition.png

SURVEY INSIGHT

  • HelloTalk provides partner learning

  • Eggbun has AI chat features

  • Memrise has AR object translations

I thought these were all fun and interactive ways to learn Korean.

{ User Survey & Analysis }

To gain quantitative data on how users learn a new language and the struggles many share, I invited 11 users participate to join my user survey. They were learning a variety of different languages, from Korean to Japanese, English, Spanish, and French.

User survey statistics for age bracket, primary language, and tim.png
  • The majority of the participants chose English as their primary language

  • Spent either less than a year OR more than 6 years studying their secondary language.

Survey analysis of users interest and way of studyinng.png
  • The biggest motivation for users is their interest in the culture and language.

  • Mobile apps and consuming media were the most popular ways to learn a second language.

SURVEY INSIGHT

  • 63.6% of users spend less than an hour studying a week, and 36.4% spend 1–3 hours studying per week. No one spent more than 3 hours.

  • When asked how difficult it was to maintain a daily learning practice on a scale of 1 to 10, everyone chose 5 or above. 9 was the most popular with 6 votes.

  • Users say that language learning is difficult because life gets in the way, hard to follow a routine, there is a lack of motivation and no access to fluent speakers.

{ User Interview & Analysis }

Next, I conducted 3 user interviews, and though I wish I had more participants, I still gained a lot of insights into the language learning experience.

Frame 1.png

INTERVIEW INSIGHT

Users now want to move away from the traditional way of studying a language from a book and choose a more immersive way to learn. This adds to the survey findings that many people opt for mobile apps as they are learning a new language.

Define

In the second step of the design process, I created a persona, an empathy map, a customer journey map, and finally coming up with a problem statement.

{ Persona }

Creating personas is a way to imagine who I would be designing for. I listed the goals & needs, motivation, and fear & frustrations.

Persona for Ashley. She lives in San Francisco, CA and loves ever.png

{ Empathy Map }

What does a typical day look like for Ashley? What does she value and think about? How are her actions different — or the same as her thoughts?

Empathy Map for Ashley.png

Ashley wants to learn Korean to consume Korean media without subtitles and have casual conversations with her friends. Although she finds joy in learning and understanding, she is embarrassed when she’s wrong and feels insecure.

{ Customer Journey Map }

If Ashley were to come across Enjoy Korean, what would that look like and how would it help fulfill her goals while removing her pains? 

Customer Journey Map.png

In this journey, Ashley discovered her passion for Korean and found ways to study, but with no success.

 

The image above shows that Ashley comes across Enjoy Korean, as it guides the way to meet her goal.

{ Problem Statement }

After the research phase, I can deduce that the users need help keeping a routine and want to learn in a non-traditional way.

  • How might we help people build structure and context of the Korean language while keeping them engaged?

  • How might we help people who struggle to learn Korean accomplish their goals?

  • How might we increase engagement and interaction with Korean learning on a daily basis?

Define

In the most creative step of the design process, I came up with solutions and created an information architecture. Followed by that are sketches, mid-fidelity wireframes, usability testing, and a UI kit.

{ Solution }

  1. Learn in Context — Engage in learning with your favorite Korean songs, comic book, and drama.
     

  2. Build a Routine — Form a habit and make language learning effortless.
     

  3. AR Translation — Enhance the Korean learning experience by incorporating a way for users to engage directly with real objects.

{ Information Architecture }

I organized all the pages according to each journey and listed items seen on each page. The square boxes represent call-to-action buttons.

Information Architecture with Journey.png

There will be three journeys.

  1. Onboarding Experience. This flow focuses on building a routine and creating personalized lessons for users.
     

  2. Song Lesson. Of the three types of content available in EnjoyKorean, I chose the song to explore and design a lesson.
     

  3. AR Translation. This flow allows users to engage in real documents and allow them to come back to the app to study.

{ Sketches }

Alongside the information architecture, I sketched my ideas on my iPad, keeping in mind the user’s pain points and motivations..

Enjoy Korean sketches.png

{ Mid Fidelity Wireframes }

From sketches to mid-fidelity screens, I started by laying out all the pages I needed to design for the three journeys. I blocked out sections for each element and did my detailed work.

Enjoy Korean mid fidelity wireframes.png

{ Usability Testing }

Usability I conducted usability testing with 6 participants over Zoom, each lasting about 30 minutes.

  1. Observe if users can accomplish the specified task. If they made a mistake, can they recover?
     

  2. Identify areas of the app that requires a change to improve user performance and satisfaction.

With the provided feedback, I created revisions to fill the gap between my understanding of the users and what the users experienced.

Before and After results from usability testing and mid fidelity.png

{ UI Kit }

The color purple is associated with ambition and creativity and the color orange is associated with enjoyment and enthusiasm. These two are the primary colors used in Enjoy Korean.

 

I used a sans serif font so it is more legible. Open sans also create a friendly and inviting environment.

UI Kit.png

Prototype

Here is the preview of my final prototype of Enjoy Korean :)

Final Wireframes Preview.png

Reflection

{ What’s Next? }

I have a huge list of features to add to Enjoy Korean so I want to work on that!

  1. Add sounds to lessons. How can I use hearing as a form of learning to teach users more about Korean?
     

  2. A skill test to identify user skill level due to the hardships of self.
     

  3. Premium Version. Without a source of income, it is hard to imagine a service like this being supported
     

  4. Creating a screen for the profile and word bank.
     

  5. Example sentences. What if users can see more example sentences related to a specific grammar rule during a lesson?

Lessons Learned

I understood how important the design process was to UX but this case study taught me exactly how. I subconsciously thought of what the final design of Enjoy Korean would be like even before I started, however, after the research and defining phase, that completely changed.

 

Through research and analysis, I learned aspects of the learning process I wouldn’t have known otherwise. For example, before research, I thought most people study through an academic textbook or with a tutor. Although many people opt for this method, mobile apps and media learning were the top two in my survey. Through this, I learned that my assumptions are wrong and that I shouldn’t come to a conclusion based on what I think.

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