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Who are the stakeholders?How the dashboard can help?Use Cases
an individual who wants to learn something new
  • when users are new to something they don’t have any idea how to set practical/realistic goals
    1. helps them to self assess where they stand in relationship to want they want to learn

    2. helps them set achievable goals (goals should be flexible)

    3. provides them with options to define flexible timeline for their preferred learning process

    4. keeps the user motivated (not be annoying, repetitive, not remind them of not achieving their goals)

    5. integrates gamification to create a positive reinforcement to keep them in the system (badges, credits, feedback from the dashboard, etc.)

    6. helps them connect to the right people if user needs peer review, feedback, instructions

    7. provides options for self self tracking and enable them to flag actions that work or didn’t work in favor of their learning process.

    8. provides options for collaborative goal setting, (e.g. several students work towards achieving the same goal)

    9. provides different views of the user's learning progress (user can decide who can see which view)

    10. enables user to set priorities to achieve goals
    11. enables them to populate data from all other assessment tools
  1. Alex

Alex wants to learn sketching. He has been using the dashboard since a month to track progress of his language learning goals and mathematics course. He starts with adding a sketching goal to his dashboard and sets the priority of this as low, as he feels the deadline for exams and other courses are near and they hold a higher priority at this time. After setting a goal, he updates the dashboard about his current status in this skill. Skill assessment is done by a few basic questions that the system asks him. He has been sketching while he was in 1st and 2nd grade of his school but after that have never thought about it till now, so he has to start as a beginner. His calendar shows him that he can give one hour per day to sketching with two hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays as he has some more free slots during those days.

Looking at some online tutorials and resources, he figures out that he has to start with learning to draw some basic lines and shapes before he can go to complex lessons like perspectives, depth and lights. So he sets a milestone of two weeks for practicing drawing basic shapes, one hour everyday and keeps a flexible hour on Tuesdays and Thursdays, giving himself an option to sketch for one hour extra on those days. He believes, with regular practice it will take him around 2 months to be able to do decent sketching but is unsure about the next step, so he keeps the rest of milestone unset with just focussing on the first milestone.

He starts using the dashboard to track his progress.His track chart shows him no missing day in the committed slot and he also realises on Tuesdays and Thursdays when he gives more time to sketching his performance in other subjects was better as drawing makes him happy. He feels good about his progress as he has been uploading the pictures of his explorations on instagram and pinterest and a lot of people encouraged him with a good feedback. He logs some of the comments in the journal and flags it, as they make him feel good and more confident.

Alex earns a good number of badges as he continues with the learning and also improves on all other subjects he is learning. He is really happy with his decision of wanting to learn this skill as he had a lot of inertia initially thinking that it wont be of any use in his academic learning and he is already a lot busy with other subjects, but once he started he found it to be one of the best thing he could do to himself to relax. Alex was aware about a lot of people who would think this way and so decided to share his success story making it public on the dashboard.


2. Sophie

Sophie gets excited about many different things in life. When she didn’t have kids, it was so much easier for her to self-tutor herself with online resources, attend different workshops and join continuing education courses to learn about different topics. However, now with two little sons, it’s almost impossible for her to open up some time to learn a new skill. The only time she has left for herself is a few minutes before going to bed. Sometimes she uses that time to read a book or a magazine or type a few sentences in her daily journal app on her iPad before passing out.

recently, a new feature has been added to her journal app that helps her set some goals and define tasks to reach those goals. One of her dreams has always been to learn photography specially to capture some good shots of their kids. She adds this goal to her journal. However, seeing that goal in an unchanged state every time she opens up her journal app irritates her and reminds her of not being able to do something she likes to do. So, she makes that goal invisible and instead enables an option called “help me get there”. with this option she can add different random activities that could help her build up her photography knowledge. She adds little activities such as paying attention to different lights, colors, textures, etc. and syncs up her journal with the other apps on her phone. So, her journal app can send her relevant messages regarding the other things that happen in her life. For instance, when she was taking her sons to the botanical garden last week, she was prompted with this message from her journal: “pay attention to all the different textures and colors you see in the garden, and take some close up photos with your cellphone”. Or today when the weather was foggy, she received a message from her journal app to pay attention to the lights and shadows in this weather and take a photo from her window.

She proudly takes notes of these little activities on her journal and keeps adding more and more little and fun activities to it. Although they may not directly help her learn how to do proper photography, at least they help her think that she is making time to do something she likes and this has had a great impact on her mood and all the other activities she does.

an individual who wants to enhance what they have already learned
    1. helps users identify where they are and what they already know

    2. helps users determine how much time and efforts they would be able to put in >> helps them set up milestones based on their preferred learning process and set flexible goals

    3. helps users define their challenges, weak point, and things that they want to improve

    4. enables users flag actions that work or don’t work in favor of their learning process.

    5. provides an option to connect to experts get feedback

    6. provide users with options to share learning experiences with others (can help with self motivating)

    7. provides an option to learn from others' learning experiences
    8. enables them to populate data from all other assessment tools
  1. Vicki

Vicki started singing two years ago when her high school adviser recommended her parents to sign her up for a singing course to build up her self confidence. Now her singing instructor insists that she should perform a piece in her graduation ceremony. Vicki feels overwhelmed with all the preparation required for this performance as well as her remaining school work in the next two months.

She thinks overcoming her stage fright is as important as practicing singing. So, she starts using a dashboard to find out how she can improve this fear. She starts listing anything that frightens her about stage performance, like forgetting the lyrics, running out of breath, her teachers in the audience, etc. She shares the list of her stage fears with her instructor to help her come up with activities to alleviate them. She also takes a side note of her other concerns such as over sweating when singing in front of people and tries to document the situations they happen least or most often.

She syncs up her dashboard with her google calendar and her blackboard to better plan her time and see the overlaps. In the first few weeks, she stays on track with documenting her daily activities and tracking her progress. Her overall progress view on the dashboard even brings to her attention that on the days that she has swimming lessons, her breathing is much better than the other days and she sweats a lot less during her rehearsals.

Getting closer to the graduation date and having several unfinished school assignments, she falls behind taking daily notes on the dashboard. She is notified by her dashboard that she can choose a quicker option to input daily activities and still track her progress. She signs into her dashboard and enables the option for quick data entry and auto prompts. For the few remaining weeks, she can keep track of her progress by going through a few simple game like steps to journal her day. She also gets automatic feedback about things that are concerning or things that are improved as well as their correlative activities.

2. Martha

Martha wants to publish a book based on a story she wrote a few years back. She knows she has the skills of a writer but she struggles to find time to focus on writing after Anna is born, as all her time goes away in her busy day job as a school teacher and taking care of Anna when she is home. She feels a need to organise the free time she has and put it to use with the writing work. So she sets a goal on the dashboard. 

Answering a few questions, she realises she has a basic understanding of what goes into writing and a storyline but needs to learn more about storytelling techniques, chapter division and narrative methods that writers user to engage with the readers. Also she needs to widen her vocabulary to be able to present her story in the best manner possible for her.

So to be able to write one chapter in a month, she needs to put in almost 2 hours a day for polishing her skills and preparing drafts. It is difficult for Martha to be able to fix a 2 hour slot everyday considering her current schedule. So she sets a flexible timeline with 30 mins slots to improve her vocabulary and 30 mins slot for actual writing on weekdays and setting more time to writing over the weekends.On reviewing her flagged comments on the dashboard journal she also notes thats its easy for her to learn something new as the first thing in morning, so she puts on the 30 min vocab learning slot in the morning and writing slot at the end of day when she has put Anna to bed, so that she is able to focus.

Martha is curious how other people have worked it out so she browses some stories on the dashboard. She finds some good insights of the process other people have followed and puts a review request to the members who have successfully achieved what they planned for in the context of writing. She waits for the request to be accepted and  meanwhile sets her status as open for collaborative goal of writing so that other people interested in enhancing writing skills can join in. She also syncs the dashboard reminders with her google calendar and sets all the reminders on for the first 2 weeks, as she feels a need to be pushed a little when she begins, till it becomes a routine for her.

experienced users who are already familiar with the dashboard

anyone who wants to create an optimum process of achieving something (what does work for them and what doesn’t)- users who want to formulate a process that work for them)


    1. enables them to flag processes or actions that work or didn’t work in favor of their learning process.

    2. helps them replicate successful processes for other goals (from your past experiences)

    3. presents them with different complexities, and all the detailed features of the dashboard (e.g unlocking advanced features in games)

    4. enables them to populate data from all other assessment tools
  1. Calvin

Calvin has been through a bad breakup and has been feeling low since a couple of weeks. He has been missing the milestones for achieving set goals and had no progress to add to the dashboard since 2 weeks. His track chart shows a decline and the he set all the notifications off as he needed some time on his own without being reminded of something he has not been doing. He has set all the settings to private on the dashboard giving no access to anyone to look at his track charts as he feels like a failure and is not ready to share the details. After a month of introspection and disappointment, he finally wants to get back on his routine. He logs in to the dashboard prepared to see the declining graphs but is determined to face it and do something about it. Calvin has been using the dashboard since an year now and has logged in a number of success and failure experiences, but this was the first time he took a break of one month with not meeting up any of his milestones and setting it off to isolation mode with all the notifications and public viewing off. The dashboard knows there is something wrong with him, as he logs in after a month, the dashboard starts with showing him an overall view of his year long timeline highlighting all the success stories, good feedback, badges and favourite experiences he has had in the past year.

The overall picture he looks at seems good, realising he has achieved more than 5 skills in the last year with 3 enhanced skills and a lot of good feedbacks. He browses through some favourite memories and feels his confidence is quite elevated. Dashboard also highlights the current slot, with a message that something needs a fix. He clicks on current month timeline slot but is no more devastated or scared about his recent failures as he saw the big picture. As he has not been entering any data for a month, the dashboard asks if he wants to add a label to that month, he labels it as a bad breakup and the timelines for all goals move a month ahead giving him a feasible timeline to still meet the goals he has set before. But getting back on track, needs a plan. He looks at the processes and experiences he has flagged under the success triggers list, identifying things that worked for him in the past.

He notices the first thing he has to start is to get up on time and start with his routine workout as it keeps him active all day long and he performed way better on days he worked out compared to days when he slept till late. He gets some similar insights on other things like some of his eating habits, making slots for achieving goals and setting the timelines. He also noticed, that being a very social person, getting feedback and suggestions from other people was one of the motivating factor for him, so he decides to change his settings to public allowing peers to see his track charts with a one month of time locked under a label. He sets that label as 'not important enough to share' and makes the current track charts visible to others.

He also plans to log in his experience of the past month somewhere in the journal to be able to laugh at himself when he has grown out of it completely. So makes a note of it and locks it inside the secret notes section with a star.


2. Mali

Mali is in grade eleven. Her school adviser has asked all students, grade 10-12 to keep track of their learnings on an online dashboard. She has been taking notes of all her school work and personal life in that dashboard. Fortunately only her marks are shared with the adviser and every thing else she adds to the dashboard remains private only to her or anyone else she gives access to.

The school advisors use these records to help students improve their academic performance and also plan for their higher education. However, for Mali the dashboard has turned into a private space where she can freely express why she dislikes a course, why she didn’t perform well in an exam, or why she likes particular topics more than others.

When Mali started setting up her dashboard, she found an option to simplify the content as well as layout on her dashboard. Using the simplification option for a year has helped Mali to realize that with a simple structure and prioritized content, she doesn’t get distracted as much, and she can stay focused on a topic for longer and finish a task. She has also found out that she can read much faster when the text on the screen has high contrast with the background. She has talked about these little findings with her mom and her advisor and they are trying to make some accommodations for her on one of the school’s computers to see if that helps her during the exam time and affect her marks.   

someone who has been selected by the user to contribute to their dashboard (parents, peers, friends, senior students, teachers, instructors, supervisors, etc.)
    1. enabling people to connect to users that they may already know in other contexts

    2. provides them with options to track user's overall performance ( to access more detailed views, the tracker should be given permission by the user)

    3. should minimize the negative impact if a user is not progressing well. So, user is still encouraged to share progress with trackers
    4. helps trackers to set up rewards/incentives systems for the user

    5. helps trackers to connect to experts to get consult (instructors, teachers, etc.)

    6. integrates gamification to make the tracking progress engaging for both the user and the tracker

    7. notifies tracker if something is going wrong
  1. Eli

Eli’s school has a summer internship program in Costa Rica for grade 10 students. Eli is finishing grade 10 this year and would love to be part of this program. She has asked her dad to let her join this program and pay for the tuition. Her dad, Daniel, has agreed but has made two conditions. First, Eli needs to improve her math scores by 15% and second she should join her school’s Spanish club to learn Spanish at an intermediate level.

Eli is determined to get into that program, so, she has started setting up a plan on her dashboard for the remainder of the school year. She indicates which items to be shared with her dad and which items to stay private. She also sets up a range of scores and types of achievements that could be shared.

Daniel starts receiving notifications from Elli’s dashboard. He can only see an overall progress view of those two subjects and can’t drill down to a detailed view of each topic. He notices that Eli has made a very insignificant progress in math over the past month in comparison to her impressive progress in Spanish. Daniel talks to Eli’s math teacher in one of the school's teachers parents meetings and tries to find out in which areas she can get some help. After this conversation, Daniel finds a few online math puzzles and sends them to Eli every other day to help her learn the concepts she has difficulty with. Every time she solves a puzzle, Daniel adds a star on her dashboards overall progress view.

Eli has also shared her Spanish related goals with her tutor and friends in the Spanish club. Based on her progress, they can add little badges to her progress view. Eli proudly shares those badges with her dad and hopes that the great number of Spanish badges would compensate for her llittle progress in math and the limited number of stars on her progress view.


2. Nortan

Nortan is in 8th grade. He is very close to his mom and loves to narrate all his school experiences to her. He loves to talk and shares about his friends, school subjects, and all other enrichment classes. With his new found love in violin, he tells her everything about it, his progress, challenges and experiences. His mom takes keen interest in what he shares and encourages him. As Nortan is fond of learning new things, his mom introduced him to the self assessment dashboard so that he can organise his time wisely and prioritise his courses. Nortan has given full access of the dashboard to his mom as for him this is another medium to tell her what he has been doing and he loves to share his progress to her with all the small and big achievements he makes.

Since a few days he is finding it difficult to manage his violin learning time as he has his exams coming. His mom notices missing commitments in that slot. Nortan feels his mom’s suggestions would be helpful and wants her to intervene. He sends an 'assist request' to her. Accepting the request she gets an access of his timeline and the journal so that they can collaboratively craft a process for him. Nortan has his music teacher added in his profile as a reviewer for his violin practice. His mom interacts with his teacher and his teacher suggests links to a few online practice sessions for violin as he cannot spend time to go for the classes. 

Using these suggestions, Nortan and his mom collectively come up with practical milestones for him, that involves dedicating 30 mins of violin practice following the online tutorials so that he don’t forget what he has already learnt till he can free up his time for attending the classes for further lessons.



Open Questions

  • Are we allowing others (e.g. parents, teachers) to set goals for a learner and then track their progress?

  • Can learners share different outputs with others (teachers, peers, parents, etc.)?

  • Is it motivating or demotivating to show new learners how many other learners have achieved the same goals?
    • DA: I think in all of these cases, as long as the learner is the one who initiates these things, and approves them, then it's OK. For example, external people can suggest goals and request to track, but the learner must accept those goals/agree to the request (or try them out for a period of time - maybe a trial period?). And a learner could try looking at other's achievements and decide for themselves if it's motivating or not.
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