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Problem Scenarios

Problem Scenarios

A problem scenario tells a story of current practice. These stories are carefully developed
to reveal aspects of the stakeholders and their activities that have implications for design.

Other members of the project team should be able to read the problem scenarios
and appreciate the work-related issues that the field study has uncovered.

It is called "problem scenarios" not because they emphasize problematic aspects of current practices,
but rather because they describe activities in the problem domain.
In SBD new activities are always grounded in current activities.


Examples using the design of this Web site:

Scenario 1: Current Stanford University Learning Design and Technology (LDT) program student:

Actor: Jane joined the LDT master's program at Stanford in June.
She had worked in an educational setting for a few years
before joining
LDT. She is very interested in designing technology for educational
purposes. She still hasn't figured out her career plans upon graduation,
but hopes that she can be involved in a career that designs
educational software and encourages creativity. Right now, she is in
the midst of searching for ideas for her master's project.

Background: BSc degree, very comfortable with computers,
Microsoft office software, intermediate skills on Web publishing
tools (e.g. Macromedia Dreamweaver™) and graphics software
(e.g. Adobe Photoshop™).


Problem Scenario (Analyzing Requirements)
Jane is required to post her master's project proposal and she is looking for ideas. She surfed the Web and was hoping to find some inspiration. But she found herself spending hours doing research. She was not very productive since the information she was looking for was scattered on many different Web sites. She thinks it'll be really useful to her if there is one site that will provide information on all of the design.

Claims Analysis
Scenario 2: Graduate of LDT currently working at a design firm:    

Actor: Larry N. is an experienced multimedia designer working
for a top software firm and is charged with designing marketing
products that seed the education market. He designs tutorials
or other media that help people get started with the software
product. He has been working for this company for three years
and prior to that he worked for an educational software company
targeting the K-5 literature audience. Altogether he has about six
years working with software in an educational setting.

Background: His background includes four years as a layout artist and three years as an elementary school teacher. His BA is in Philosophy with a minor in art. He is thirty-six years old and is self-taught in Web design and action script programming. He does not belong to any professional organizations, but does subscribe to some online design newsletters and has a subscription to an action-script programming newsletter. He tries to attend at least one workshop on the new features of the software and other types of professional conferences/tradeshows once a year.


Problem Scenario (Analyzing Requirements)
Larry has to revise an existing product that was designed two years ago. He was the junior designer in a two-person team. The senior member has left the team. Larry remembers the product very well because occasionally he gets a phone call from the sales force people to ask about a couple of the features of the product. He desires to get a new frame of reference to approach the redesign. Normally, he and his teammate would just sit down and review the product, maybe take in some feedback from the sales people and his boss and begin the redesign. Because this is a redesign he is expected to create a new product within six weeks. He gives himself 30 minutes to do some research.

Claims Analysis

Scenario 3: Professors of LDT    

Actors: Professors Hoadley and Walker, two experienced education design professors visiting a designer interview web site. Their aim may be to find innovative solutions to design problems they have encountered, find designers who they believe are luminary in their innovation or their unique approaches to design problems, and to search for possible projects that they could impose on the next years poor students.

Background: In addition they have been in the field for some time now and have developed a knowledge of the key designers for education, as well as the sites around the world that a have consistently provided reliably good education design models.








Problem Scenario (Analyzing Requirements)
Time is limited for these busy professors so an indexing system that either categorizes the work by approach or by influences or influences would be preferable. With respect to time, they would prefer that you summarize the designer's theoretical model and link these with a searchable key word. In this way designers working within the same theories could be compared. The search should exclude unrelated design fields and nonacademic institutions.

As opposed to the main users for this site who are the LDT students, these professors are able to quickly scan large amounts of data from the designer of interest to find the relevant information. Furthermore in depth bibliography of the designers work would have to be easily referenced so that they could study their target designer in depth. The average LDT student would have little time for this information.

Claims Analysis

Rodin's The Thinker Statue