MSU UARC is shutting down effective June 30, 2021. We are no longer taking on new projects.


Advancing User-Centeredness, Solving Pain Points, and Driving Innovation: Lessons Learned from Mapping the Customer Experience

Emily Mahood Bowman, Senior User Experience Architect, Team Detroit

While the practice of user experience strategy is gaining ground, political and operational struggles crop up when trying to incorporate these new tools and techniques. Organizational legacies don't disappear and not everyone understands the value of such efforts. To help newcomers to the strategy table identify where to focus your efforts and what battles are worth the fight, we'll explore the lessons learned mapping the customer experience and operationalizing a consumer-centered strategic framework for a large automotive client.

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Usability of Social Media During Times of Disaster

Liza Potts; Associate Professor, Department of Writing, Rhetoric, and American Cultures, College of Arts and Letters; Director, Experience Architecture; Director, Writing, Information and Digital Experience; Michigan State University

During times of disaster, people try to reach out across social media to locate lost loved ones, learn about the event, share information, and try to help each other. Unfortunately, the vast majority of our social media tools are not designed to allow this information to surface and circulate in ways that can help in such desperate times. This presentation will address the usability of these systems and share the findings of over 10 years worth of study.

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Lifelong Learning in UX

Megan Schwarz, Interaction Designer and User Experience Strategist, Enlighten

Is your quest to become an expert in your field limiting your growth as a UX designer? The high demand for UX expertise sometimes pressures designers to produce a quick solution - even in situations where additional exploration is necessary. Let's step away from our arsenal of best practices and focus on deeper understanding. In this talk, Megan will show how connecting expertise with context opens up opportunities for innovation and continued learning in your career.

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Just Enough for Innovation

Josie Scott, User Experience Design Research Lead, Synchrony Financial

As we move toward an Agile software development world, organizations have struggled to integrate User Experience (UX) Design and provide timely, impactful research. The Agile Manifesto provides challenges for great UX, and organizations have struggled to integrate. Josie Scott, User Experience Research Lead at Synchrony Financial, will outline a successful testing and research program she was able to craft based on her unique background as a UX researcher...of UX Researchers. Just Enough Testing (JET) has become the foundation of Synchrony Financial’s Innovation Station UX research program.

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Fostering Innovation through Social Media: Knowledge Flows, Business Goals, and Measurement Strategies

Wietske van Osch, Assistant Professor, Department of Media and Information, College of Communication Arts and Sciences, Michigan State University

Social media have been termed one of the most transformative ITs for today's enterprises, largely due to their ability to increase collaboration and innovation through greater visibility and accessibility of information and experts. As a result, companies have adopted and implemented both public and enterprise social media as means to achieving various strategic goals, from connecting dispersed individuals to facilitating online collaboration, co-creation, and crowdsourcing. With the growing availability of "big data" from user behaviors, interactions and content on social media, we now have the ability to measure the actual impact of these technologies on team collaboration and innovation. In this talk, several possible techniques for analyzing large and complex amounts of data are discussed. Furthermore, key findings and implications are shared regarding the ideal composition of design teams for innovativeness as well as the implementation and use of social media technologies in their most productive and impactful manner.