THE UX OF READING | UX Studio Practices

Yiwei Han (David)
5 min readJan 20, 2021

10/12/20–17/12/20 (1 weeks)

📃Brief: Design an experience that reveals what happens when we read.

🤝Group Members: Luchen Peng, Sue Heeyeon An, Tatiana Bohsali, Yiwei Han(David).

“For this project we will be using two distinct research methods:

literature review & prototyping.”

Want to know what it is? Read the article below!

Literature Review & Ideation

Recap of Literature Review (Made by Group).

Before making this diagram of our Literature Review, my group and I shared our experiences and insights about reading with each other. For example, reading an academic paper in English is very challenging for me, and I have always felt dyslexic. That’s why I chose to read the article ‘The psychology of reading for pleasure: Needs and gratifications’, curious as to why anyone would enjoy reading. My group members also conducted this research from their own interest.

Offline discussion: Sharing our findings with each other and Ideation(Courtesy of David).

We then synthesised the literature review and we came up with three initial ideas based on it:

Idea1: Reveal the effects of different pre-reading moods on text comprehension: The two different coloured glasses represent two different pre-reading moods, which filter out positive and negative words, respectively.

Idea2: Reveal the ability to read through visual features: Testing the visual features of different languages by erasures of different parts of the text.

Idea3: Reveal the ability to make sense through context: the two groups wear different coloured glasses to guess the middle word of the three words because they see the context differently, all their judgements of the middle word will be different.

Three initial ideas (Draw by Sue).

Based on John’s feedback and suggestions, and Shannon’s theory of linguistic redundancy in information theory, we decided to develop the idea 2 to design an experience not only uses the ability to use visual features for literacy but also reveals that different languages have different redundancy levels.

Left: Sketch of the final idea(Made by David); Right: Digital prototype.

This is a game that enables the whole class to participate, please see below for details. We chose passages from The Little Prince that are not difficult to understand in terms of text content and made sure that the number of words between the different passages is similar to ensure fairness.

Instructions of Final Idea (Made by Group).

Prototyping & Testing

Prototyping (Courtesy of David).
Group 1 Text-kits & Group 2 Text-kits & Group 3 Text-kits (Courtesy of Luchen).
Testing the digital prototype online (Courtesy of David).

Block and Unblock — Final Presentation

“we looked at the text like not as reading it, but as objects or forms.”

The whole game went successfully, except for the introduction part, students suggested that some diagrams could have been made to help people understand better. John points out that this may be unfair to non-native English speakers and create an unnecessary cognitive load. Perhaps next time, it would be a little better to just let people interpret it in their own native language, but a Hindi translator might be needed.

Reflection

We did have two details that can be improved: In the presentation section, such as ensuring that we are facing the audience when presenting; Some key processes could be demonstrated and explained with diagrams.

📚Reference:

  1. Burke, M. (2011). Literary reading, cognition and emotion: an exploration of the oceanic mind. New York: Routledge.
  2. De, A. (2018). Little Prince. S.L.: Wordsworth Editions Ltd.
  3. Garrod, S. and Daneman, M. (n.d.). Level 1 Reading, Psychology of. [online] Available at: https://www.psy.gla.ac.uk/~simon/S00606.pdf.
  4. Gleick, J. (2011). The information: a history, a theory, a flood. New York: Pantheon Books.
  5. Hanington, B. (2019). Universal Methods Of Design. S.L.: Rockport Publishers.
  6. Inouk, E.B., Suzanne, E.M. and Jolles, J. (2016). Reading Pictures for Story Comprehension Requires Mental Imagery Skills. Frontiers in Psychology, [online] 7. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5075566/.
  7. Nell, V. (1988). The Psychology of Reading for Pleasure: Needs and Gratifications. Reading Research Quarterly, 23(1), p.6.
  8. Rayner, K., Schotter, E.R., Masson, M.E.J., Potter, M.C. and Treiman, R. (2016). So Much to Read, So Little Time. Psychological Science in the Public Interest, 17(1), pp.4–34.

🎬Post-credits scene

First Group Meeting (Courtesy of David).
Group 3 results (Courtesy of David).

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Yiwei Han (David)

MA User Experience Design - University of the Arts London