UpSkill Mobile app – Case Study

Note: This was a ficticious product developed for a class project

This application aimed to come up with a mobile app that facilitates e-learning. We analyzed popular learning applications like Udemy, Udacity, Skillshare, Lynda, and others. This application allowed instructors to teach niche skills and also allowed students to find instructors who taught using methods they related to the most. The team set out to create an app that aided learning with an easy-to-use platform that connected them with instructors with compatible teaching styles.


To create an easy-to-use educational platform to connect learners with instructors with compatible teaching-styles

  • Strategy

    Design thinking

  • Client

    Carnegie Mellon University


The team used eight weeks to conduct user research. We followed the design thinking stages and methodologies, including the usual five steps: empathize, define, ideate, prototype, and test. We eventually created and developed a high-fidelity prototype that showcased the proposed implementation.


I was part of a team for this project and worked on all aspects of the user experience design journey, including its visual, UX, and interaction design. Together we implemented the UX of the entire platform pages, from ideation to testing.

User research

User interviews

For this project, we sent out a series of surveys. Below are the questions we asked

  1. Have you ever used online community education platforms?
  2. Have you ever used these platforms on mobile?
  3. What was your primary motivation behind using them? (earn certification, gain knowledge, review existing skills, etc.)
  4. How often do you use these platforms?
  5. What do you use the most on these platforms (videos, practice problems, educational games, etc.)
  6. What do you enjoy about these platforms?
  7. What would you like to see added to these platforms to improve your experience?
  8. Anything you would like to add to help our project — specifically for a mobile app?

Sample responses

Pain Points

From our research and user interviews, we identified the following pain points:

  • Poor ease of use apps
  • Incompatible teaching styles offered by some instructors
  • Live lessons happening at not so ideal times
  • Confusing navigation for non-English speaking students

User research


User research

Maps: Journey maps and site maps

Journey Map - Instructor
Journey Map - Learner_Page

Design solutions

From our research and user interviews, we came up with the following solutions/features:

  • Presentation video of instructor and courses emphasize teaching style
  • In-app scheduling integrated with Calendar to tailor lectures to schedules
  • In-app messaging connected to third-party services for easy communication with instructors
  • A user-centered approach to enable ease of use
  • Language localization to enable adoption by none English speakers

Hindsight - What I learned

We did not build this project, but it taught me a significant amount about user experience research and why it is essential to research before starting a project or building a new product. I particularly like how affinity clustering made sense of all the noise that research can bring. Personas and maps help align future UX design work. It was a fun project, and I enjoyed every aspect of it, from empathizing to user testing.

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