Web Accessibility Evangelism
I have a passion for helping people with disabilities use the web. Over my career I have trained hundreds of people on the fundamentals of web accessibility and how to apply that knowledge to their own websites.
Explaining the connection between web accessibility and user experience is an important part of getting people on the web accessibility bandwagon. It can help web designers guide and defend their user interface choices.
Web Accessibility Administrator
In 2017 I became Duke Universities first Senior Web Accessibility Administrator. My responsibilities include creating university-wide standard. Communicating the standard across the whole university. Of equal importance I performing assessment and assist in remediation. In some cases I train people on how to make the fixes. In other cases I make them myself because I have deep knowledge of Drupal and the Drupal theme system. Websites do not stay in compliance forever. I have created plans for continued automated scanning and a schedule for manual testing for things like screen reader compatibility and keyboard accessibility.
UX Creative Briefs
Although my days are spent administering Duke's web accessibility program, I have past experience in writing Creative Briefs and requirements gathering.
As part of my initial meeting with the client I have a Creative Session. This requires and open mind and listening skills. This is how you learn the clients branding requirements, frustrations with the current site, and hopes and dreams for the new site. This helps discover general required features and page types. During this initial meeting I show them other sites and get their reactions.
I compile the results of this meeting (and sometimes surveys) into a comprehensive Creative Brief. All my creative briefs include results form the meeting, wireframes, review of Google Analytics data, and create user-personas. The amount of detail depends on each client situation. From this document I can sum up vague ideas of what the client envisions the into concrete digestible document. These documents can be sent the design to any designer and they will have all the background necessary to make comps.
Wire-frames & Low-Fidelity Prototypes
Solid tested wire-frames are the foundation of good design. I put wire-framing in two categories: interactive wire-frames and non-interactive wire-frames. For non-interactive low-fidelity wireframes, I have used paper and pencil, Balsomic, or Adobe Illustrator. For fully interactive low-fidelity wireframes, I use straight HTML5/CSS3, Axure, or UXPin. Usually these wire-frames will also include a wire-frame for narrow viewports (mobile devices).
UX and Visual Design
Understanding the concepts and the trends in design is key in delivering relevant designs. Each new wave of design is a reaction to the previous status quo. My Certified Usability Analyst training allows me to analyze the effect of these new trends as it relates to usability.