uPortal Walkthrough - Student Employment Scenario

Walkthrough Setup

Evaluation Completed by: Gary Thompson
Date: September 19, 2007
Environment/URL: MyUW

Scope of Walkthrough

uPortal: Public/Guest page, Login, Home Page, Academics Page, UW Course Resources, Logout

User profile(s) and context of use

Persona: Ed McClellan, Undergraduate
Ed is in his freshman year. Ed has used the portal a few times and recognizes that there are a few valuable (though not highly usable) services within the portal. Ed is accessing the portal via his laptop from his dorm room.

User Expectations & Conventions


Ed is searching for his instructor's contact information to email a question regarding his assignment.


Guest Page and Login

As I had to use the demo account, I could not properly evaluate the login or the guest page.

Home Page

Refer to the UW Home page evaluation.

After looking at the tab choices, Ed decides to try "Work Record" since it has the word work in it.

Work Record Page

Usability Issues



Suggestions for solution

Component Identified?

(plus) (minus)
My professional development content is interesting, but Ed is looking to get paid. The Student Job Center link under Employee Resources looks promising. A single link displayed as a list is semantically wrong, and the single link as the only content feels very forced (do you really need an entire, separate portlet for a single link?) and a waste of space. The title "Employee Resources" is vague and untrue as Ed is not yet an employee and there is only a single resource (Student Job Center).

Match between system and the real world, Flexibility and efficiency of use, Aesthetic and minimalist design


Provide more useful content (like a search interface). Personalized job listings (like the personalized professional development) would be ideal.


Ed figures he should click the Student Job Center link. Ed is whisked away from the portal to the UW Student Job Center website loaded in a new browser window. The UW Student Job Center website and interface is very different than the portal. Ed now has to re-calibrate his bearings.

Visibility of system status, Error prevention


Indicate to the user that they are going to be transfered to another application/site

External Link Indicator

There is no way to get back to the portal from the UW Student Job Center interface.

User control and freedom


Provide a means to return to the portal

Host Panel/Frame