Course Scheduler: A Fond Farewell

This is the last iteration of our course scheduler wireframes for IDSE201, in which we bid a fond farewell—or good riddance—depending on how the process went. I must admit that this iteration and the last one were a complete struggle. The last iteration didn’t change much, but this time I found a little bit more inspiration and landed on something that I felt balanced the simplicity required for the user experience and that degree planning is pretty complex no matter how you slice it.

Once you cut through standard degree requirements, there’s not a lot of room for variation. The most room one has for adding courses is in a major, and that’s pretty much constrained by department. So this version of the scheduler organizes the classes you need to take in buckets wherein the range of choices is not particularly huge. I’m not totally satisfied with the handling of required classes versus pick one (or at least n) of the following courses.

During testing, all my participants were able to easily work their way through the flow, going from an empty schedule to a completed semester. Only the print and export buttons were somewhat hard to find, and surely there is a better way to say export, like “send to calendar,” but that fits in a button!

Jon Kolko says we go through the pain and frustration of interaction design so that our users don’t have to. Point proven.

The latest iteration of the course scheduler is available in PDF or Flash formats. Note the Flash version is manually controlled with forward and back buttons in the upper-right.