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Formulating Feedback3:23 with Nick Pettit
Let's break down how to form feedback into three parts: First you want to describe the work, then you want to interpret it by figuring out the goal of the work, and then finally you want to judge the work by identifying strengths and weaknesses in the execution of its goal.
Finding the Goal
Here are some questions you can use to try and find the goal of a website:
- Who is the user of this website, and what are they trying to accomplish?
- Does this website feel familiar to you and would you know how to use it?
- What are some design patterns you recognize?
- What are the characteristics of a person that might use this site?
- How does this website fit into someone's everyday life?
- What's the main thing you can do on this website?
Design Foundations - If you want to focus on the elements and principals of design, check out this course.
Before you start formulating and delivering feedback,
it's important to think about the appropriate time to deliver it.
Design tends to work best in environments where frequent and
honest feedback is encouraged.
It's hard to say when the best time might be because it's very contextual.
But you should give people feedback when they'll be receptive to it.
If they ask for some help, then give them your thoughts.
And if you see a lot of room for
improvement, ask them if their project is in a place we're it's ready for feedback.
Better yet, if there's no regular time scheduled for
critique, or if there's no retrospective time following a project,
consider adding it to your process or suggesting it to your coworkers.
Once you've identified the best time to give a critique,
it's time to formulate your thoughts.
This is the most important part, and let me show you why.
Let's say you just finished a new redesign for a website and
you show your coworkers, and maybe the reaction isn't what you hoped for.
Maybe they give you a thumbs down and
they say I hate that, or something like this looks worse than before.
That type of feedback is very subjective and not helpful.
It only describes someone's feelings and
it doesn't tell you why they feel that way.
You need something specific, objective, and constructive that you can build upon.
And when you give someone else criticism, they need the same from you.
Let's break down how to form feedback into three parts.
First, you want to describe the work.
Then, you want to interpret it by figuring out the goal of the work.
And then finally, you want to judge the work by identifying strengths and
weaknesses in the execution of its goal.
So let's examine each step.
First, start by describing the visuals using design vocabulary.
For example, you might describe a website's composition, and
point out how elements are grouped together.
You could identify areas where shape, color, and fonts are used for emphasis.
And perhaps other areas that use lower contrast to de-emphasize
less important parts.
If you need help with the elements and
principles of design, check out the notes associated with this video.
Second ask questions about the goal of the work.
Who is the user of this website, and what are they trying to accomplish?
Maybe it's a website that sells hats to sports fans.
Maybe it's a website for a bank that prides itself on being secure and
Does this website feel familiar to you, and would you know how to use it?
What are some design patterns you recognize?
For more questions you can ask check out the notes associated with this video.
Third, identify the strengths and weaknesses of the work.
What parts of the design support the goal of the website and what parts do not?
Overall, do you think the work is successful?
And what would you change?
That's a lot to remember.
So in the next video, we'll apply these ideas to an example website.
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