Design Critique — — “How to improve your design?”

As a designer, we are often asked about how to improve your design. When we finish one project, we need to evaluate this design so that we can know if people want to use this product. Thus, the designers need to do a validation research for their design. But how can I validate my design? Every designer should know “Design Critique” because you can use this method to improve your design.

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A good designer will need to learn to take the feedback from their peers, clients, and bosses to solve a particular design problem. Critiques will help you broaden your communication skills as a designer, as there is always the opportunity to articulate why you did what you did or to better explain your idea to the reviewer if they don’t see it as clearly as you do. A good critique can involve both positive and negative feedback, which can be tricky to navigate.

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For the design critique, the designer can make a critique meeting. You can organize a small group of 3–7 to discuss a set of sketches or prototypes. You could focus purely on branding elements, ease of use concepts, or even engineering feasibility, it’s up to whoever leads. The important thing is someone does lead the discussion, define what questions should be discussed and facilitate the conversation. Then, the members of group should choose some specific questions that they want answered and define these questions. So how to make good questions for design critique meeting is the first challenge. If you want to know how to make good questions for conducting the perfect design critique, you should think about the information inthe image below when you are doing your design critique.

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In conclusion, design critique is very important for any product design. It will validate and improve your design. If designers neglect this step, they may find many problems when people uses this product. Therefore, critique of design is very important for designer and the designer should keep a positive attitude during the design critique.

And I want to post this reference resource again because it is very useful for designer:

Possible discussion points / questions to use

Here’s a sample list of design questions that might be of us to help guide the discussion. Again, depending on your goals for the critique, you might focus on, or avoid, some of these.

  • What are the user scenarios the site is designed for? Walkthrough how each design would enable those scenarios.
  • What known usability / design / business issues are these sketches trying to solve?
  • What is the intended style of the design, and is it appropriate for the target audience?
  • What is the intention of the style, and does it achieve the desired effect?
  • Are there standard brand elements that should be used, and are they used appropriately?
  • Are there similar software products or features that these designs should relate to?
  • What usability heuristics does each design support well? (or not?)
  • Where in the design are the most likely places for users to have trouble? and why?
  • Are there reasonable design changes that might avoid these problem points?
  • Does each design idea take advantage of things the user might already have learned?
  • What are the pros and cons of each design idea, relative to each other?
  • Are there any hybrid design ideas that are worth exploring, based on the designs in the room?
  • What open issues might best be resolved by a usability study or other research?

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