As our group moves from gathering users’ needs & stakeholders ideas, and towards developing pilot projects for a Guardianship Navigator, we have been doing design work to ensure that the end-product will be usable, innovative, and successful.
On this page, please find some of our design work product, including the first-draft Prototypes of some of the navigators we are considering, our Guiding Principles about how any navigator should be designed, and a Pattern library of how other websites achieve the same functions that our navigator will perform.
Our human-centered design approach means that as we develop our Guardianship Navigator platform & tools, we put the users of these products first. Based on our user research & our design training, we have created a set of Guiding Principles that will guide all of our design and development work.
We’ve collected together examples of websites & designs that perform the same functions as our concepts for our Guardianship Navigator products. Each set of patterns are oriented around an essential set of functions, that the site is trying to provide for the user.
The examples provide a variety of possible ways to achieve the essential functions — some better than others. We’ve collected them together to start identifying good practices & patterns, and areas for improvements, that we can integrate into our prototypes.
Legal Help Portals
These images are all of legal self-help and services sites from the Internet, on a desktop computer. They are landing pages that are intended to orient the user — a person seeking legal help — and get them on the best pathway to find support, information, and other resources that will help them resolve their problem.
The main functions of the Legal Help Portal are to:
- greet the user & engage her to stay on the site
- give her some basic orientation as to what is available
- help the user frame her problem in terms of the language of the site/domain
- give the user options as to what paths she might take for her problem
- direct the user to the option that best suits her need
- give the user resources to follow-through on the option she has chosen
Triage & Diagnosis Tools
These are examples of how websites do preliminary ‘intake’ of a user — having them categorize their situation, evaluating whether they belong on the legal path they want to take, and to recommend other paths they may want to consider.
The main functions of the Triage Tool are to:
- Gather a first level of information about a user’s situation
- Help the user put a name on their problem
- Show them possible paths they could take
- Help them decide which solution path is most appropriate
- Cut them off from paths that they’re not eligible for
- Figure out what type of service to provide them (at what expertise level, with what kind of vehicle, with what level of hands-on support)
Process Guides are walk-throughs of a legal process, to help a user understand what the route is from point A (a problem state) to point B (a resolution of the problem). It can incorporate other tools inside of it (triage, intake of info, filling of forms, etc), but its main purpose is to present the user with a map of a path and action steps to move along the path.
The main functions of the Process Guide are to:
- Provide orientation, birds-eye view of what to expect to the user
- Help user estimate time and effort necessary to get through the process, and where the sticking points are
- Set accurate expectations of what the process will be
- Let the user feel like they have some knowledge and can have control, co-piloting ability during the process
- Help them imagine what is coming, let them feel prepared
- Give step-by-step details of what to do & what may happen, so they can take the right actions at the right time
Know Your Rights
This branch of legal designs is meant to engage a lay audience about an unfamiliar area of law, and educate them about how it may apply to their situation. These designs say: You are now in the strange world of law. Here is how this world works, who the relevant people are, what the rules are, and what you should know to thrive here.