I led the UX and UI design of the Bootcamp Avenue website, a review site for up and coming development bootcamps.
UX, UI, Branding
Advisor, Developers, and Myself
Guiding Prospective Students
Bootcamp Avenue started as an idea for a review site catering to the large selection of up and coming coding bootcamps, particularly those started within the Central Asian and Turkish communities of Los Angeles and Chicago.
With their bootcamp rapidly growing, mentors from the Seytech Coding bootcamp approached me to design a website that could serve as a review platform for coding bootcamps just like theirs. This would allow students to share their experiences transparently and help prospective students choose a bootcamp experience that is right for them.
As the sole designer for the project I worked on both user experience and visual design of the website. Our team is made up of myself, an advisor and 3 devs, themselves mentors at a coding bootcamp. The site is currently under development.
How might we create an intuitive and trustworthy rating website for new development bootcamps?
KEY RESEARCH INSIGHT
Two Types of Users
The project began by surveying a group of past and present bootcamp students. Through these interviews we gained insight into the most important metrics a potential user might find most relevant.
After conducting our research we split our users into two groups, those currently shopping for a potential bootcamp to attend and those with a prior bootcamp experience looking to leave a review. Of the information most valuable to the former were obvious factors such as price, location, and course duration, but also factors such as development languages covered and employment rate. Our priority for bootcamp alumni became designing a quick and painless review process. We also needed a system that could counter the risk of an easily manipulated review system.
I kept these things in mind while sketching concepts for the new knowledge base and decided to focus on both usability as well as trustability. I also aimed to design a product that not only made users happy but one that would remain in scope to our small team.
Clear functionality, intuitive interfaces, clear copy, and easy discoverability.
Trust & Secutiry
We needed to avoid creating a website that could easily be manipulated or spammed.
Having gained a better understanding of the needs of our users, our next step became auditing review sites and other websites within the same space. Through this process we were able to assess what other online bootcamp rating services offered and where they fell short. This led us to discover that many similar platforms suffered from ineffective design and clunky user experiences. Based on this research we prioritized potential features based on impact for our users and ease of implementation for our small team, narrowing them down to a few key features.
Feature Prioritization Matrix
Simplifying for Our Users
The design centers around a streamlined site architecture with a minimal homepage and straightforward bootcamp pages. At the top of the homepage sits a search bar that functions as the website's main navigation. Aside from searching directly for bootcamp names, I designed a tag feature to search through popular and relevant bootcamp offerings such as full-stack courses, job guarentees, and career services.
Explore by Category
On the homepage also sits a continually updated ranking of the top reviewed bootcamps on the site as well as top bootcamps within different categories such as remote or full-stack. This feature made high level ranking information easily accessible.
Information At A Glance
On the individual bootcamp pages, priority was placed on quick access to the most meaningful metrics captured through our research such as tuition rates, employment rates, and location. A breakdown of the bootcamp’s rating is also displayed showing the number and quality of past reviews.
Leave A Review
In order to make reviewing simple and accessible we created multiple entry points throughout the site for users to access the review form. We included it as a link in the menu bar as well as on the search results page, and individual bootcamp pages.
Our solution for adding credibility to reviews revolved around a LinkedIn verification system wherein when a user submits their review they’re presented with the option of displaying their current employment status and employer. I believed this system would add more credibility to successfully employed reviewers as well as those employed at prestigious companies.
This project is currently in progress. There are still many features our team would like to incorporate into the platform such as a more complex rating system that prioritizes recent reviews to more accurately take into account improvements and declines in bootcamp quality.
One of the main challenges that lays ahead is of building up a large enough review base for the site to function. A solution may appear by partnering with similar small bootcamps in this community in order to grow our review base. By spotlighting employment rate in the site design we are incentivising these bootcamps to showcase their successes which could increase their credibility as worthwhile investments.
Founder - Ulan Rakymzhanov
Advisor - Marat Gaipov
Developer - Askar Zholdoshev
Developer - Azamat Rashidbekov
Developer - Makhabat Maksatbekova