Phase 4 | Week 11 — Evaluative Research Activities

04/11 Refine concepts & narratives


  • Narrowed down to 2 ideas, prepared for speed dating
  • Impressed with how quickly we put together storyboards, quickly organized
  • Feedback from Sofia & Hajira
  • Asynchronous feedback & join SC FB groups


  • Wonder how testing would be
  • Interested to put everything together, audio & survey
  • Continue iterating our concepts
  • Work on survey questions


  • Have not interviewed with high school students
  • Wonder where we stand with other groups
  • SC students be on spring break, timeline
  • Students on vacation, not sure how effectively if we try to reach out to them online

During this group meeting, we worked on narratives for three early design concepts in slide decks. Our initial plan was to make low-fidelity videos walking through each concept with storyboards:

Storyboard 1: The Incubator

It’s a program for students around Santa Clara to meet and work on projects together with mentors and professionals.

Storyboard 2: Farm Potluck

It’s a food & culture program for students learn new recipes based on different cultures and host conversations at a potluck party.

Storyboard 3: Portfolio Portal

It’s an interconnected platform where Santa Clara students showcase their work and experiences.

We discussed and finalized narratives for three concepts. Before Monday’s class, Karen and Peter will record audios for storyboards, Lulin and MK will make sketches to line up with the narrative.

04/12 Storyboards & survey

Before class, we quickly put together three concept videos by using Keynote. Peter and Stef were able to view our concept videos and give insights and feedback.

From left to right: The Incubator, Farm Potluck, Portfolio Portal

Peter suggested us to explain during presentation how our concepts are connected to previous research and design principles, so that viewers can follow that thread. In addition, we need to be able to explain where is the novelty in our concepts, for example, students crafting their path and get supported in ways they are not currently supported. Peter also encouraged us to specify the underlying structure, for example, qualities embedded in these concepts. With that being said, we did recognize some common themes in our concepts: self-agency, self-actualization, students present themselves, openness to follow your own path with support from networks etc.

During the discussion, Peter reframed our concepts from his point of view which we found very helpful in helping us identify underlying structure:

  • The Incubator: Students craft their paths and get supported by the community
  • Farm Potluck: students learn cultures through doing, a deeper connection to different cultures
  • Portfolio portal: each student has an active role in deciding which stories they are trying to tell about themselves.

Stef mentioned that two of the concepts have similar artwork and one doesn’t. Based on this feedback, we plan to make a new storyboard for the Incubator to have a consistent style across all 3.

Working on survey questions

Since we plan to get asynchronous feedback by sending out a survey embedding our concept videos, we worked on corresponding survey questions together.

We were all inspired by Likert scale questions from Anna Boyle’s thesis presentation: How effective do you think…, How useful would you find…. We utilized these two question formats to draft our survey questions. We anticipated that there would be three Likert scale questions and one open-ended question following each concept video.

Left: credit to Anna Boyle; Right:survey questions for the Incubator concept

Then we shared our draft survey questions with Hajira and Sofia for feedback. We received generally positive feedback from them with some questions about how the Potluck concept relates to the future of education. We started distributing our survey through social media channels including Facebook, Reddit, LinkedIn, we shared the survey in private groups as well as sending direct messages to people who are currently in or graduated from high schools in Santa Clara.

Left: Distribute survey on social media; Right: Places we post our survey

04/14 Feedback from Arnold

Today we have guest Arnold Wasserman join our studio and provide feedback on our progress. Our feedback was as follows:

  • Idea of making implicit explicit
  • Idea of self-reflection for agency capacity
  • For concepts that can occur presently, how to make them feel more future-oriented?
  • Looking for the mechanisms for embedding self-reflection, these current storyboards seem to be mainly outward looking — could see how portfolio is self-reflection, looking for what did I learn, what do I know now, what do I know about me and about the world and other people.
  • What do I know about me, the world, my cohort, that I didn’t know before?
  • Looking for meta-learnings — those are the capacities that we’re trying to build
  • How can these three storyboards be used to induct students into thinking long-horizon futures.
  • Not seeing a pathway with milestones and gaining of capacities.
  • Trick my brain into thinking what if, trying to build metacognitive capacities that are needed to be able to think about the future, see yourself in it, and pursue agency towards that futures

Feedback from Peter includes:

  • for FRL, what are 3–4 things that are necessary? E.g. self-reflection, self-agency etc.
  • for GC, what are 3–4 things that are necessary?
  • hints are stuck in present, stuck in the familiar part of the present, what would make it really unfamiliar? What would make Pablo really future ready?
  • Love farm to table idea — go from learning how to plant to cooking, but how do we emphasize that this isn’t just about agriculture, it’s about learning about different cultures? What do we have in common? What are our differences?
  • Portfolio — has self-reflection, idea of Kim trying to chart her future, but how do we make sure she’s doing all the things that take us from the familiar to being future ready?

04/16 Friday

Survey Responses

We got 4 survey responses! And one participant indicated she is willing to participate in prototype testing!

Looking at the survey responses, it seems that participants generally rate The Incubator and Portfolio Portal as effective and useful. For Farm Potluck, we received a mixed of positive and negative responses. Questions around this concept were around 1) whether ingredients can be used without having been grown at the local farm; 2) dishes and culture are constantly changing; 3) learning culture through food is established and reliable, it could take place today.

Theory of Change Diagram

Based on feedback we received from Arnold and Peter. We used the Social Change Wheel shared by Stacey as a reference to draft our theory of change wheel. For our project, the center would be future-ready learner and global citizen. We tried to build students’ metacognitive skills as self-agency, self-actualization and self-reflection. With this in mind, we brainstormed a range of activities happening in and outside of school that could help students build those metacognitive capacities.

Left: social change wheel; Right: Theory of change diagram

Next Steps

Our next steps would include investigating self-reflection tools, prototyping and testing with participants.



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