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Marshall University's Student Newspaper

The Parthenon

Marshall University's Student Newspaper

The Parthenon

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MyMU Workshop Focuses on Design Thinking

Marshall+hosts+workshops+with+IT+to+improve+MyMU.
Courtesy of Cody Hall
Marshall hosts workshops with IT to improve MyMU.

A week-long design thinking workshop was hosted by Marshall University’s Information Technology Service Desk last week in partnership with Attain Partners to better understand how they can improve Marshall’s online portal, MyMU.

The workshop included a number of different activities, including identifying pain points and finding ways to optimize the user experience. The volunteers met in Drinko Library throughout the week to participate in design thinking activities that would help Attain and Marshall IT as they redesign MyMU over the coming months.

“The general idea of this project is to be able to use design thinking to implement a portal for our students, faculty and staff that’s going to invigorate the community and make things better, seamless, easier-to-use, all those buzz words,” said Cody Hall, IT systems integration specialist.

Hall hosted the workshop in collaboration with Jennifer Best, a change manager with Attain and Jodie Penrod, Marshall’s Chief Information Officer.

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“The idea of change management and design thinking is that, with technology implementations, if we don’t deliver a product that is effective and loved by our humans that we are delivering it to, then we probably have not accomplished the goal we set out to do,” Best said. Best also explained the basic principles of design thinking, which has become increasingly popular at Marshall following the development of the iCenter.

Design thinking has three main steps: deep customer empathy, going broad to go narrow and rapid prototyping. The workshop aimed to follow these steps to discover various aspects of the MyMU portal that could improve.

“We were able to map out seven or eight pretty intense and convoluted processes that not only focus on the student process, it’s like, ‘Who else is involved in it?’ ‘What systems are we in?’ ‘Where are their pain points?’ ‘What are their ideas for future improvements?’ That, in and of itself, is a gigantic accomplishment because process mapping is hard work,” Best said. “We also have really uncovered what’s important to us as we move forward, where we want to head in the spirit of this implementation.”

According to Hall, while there is no set date for the newly renovated MyMU’s release, it is expected to be fully launched by the start of orientation next year, as this gives IT an opportunity to teach incoming freshmen how to use the new program.

 

Correction: The workshop took place in Drinko Library, a previous version of the story incorrectly stated the location.

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