We immersed ourselves within the world of education to help Dell’s Experience Design Group envision the future of technology in this exciting area.

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Transforming education

Dell understands that new opportunities are continually emerging for innovation in product and service design in a wide variety of home and business contexts. Technology has been transforming the way educational services are accessed and delivered in recent years from how students communicate to how teachers grade and these changes go well beyond gadgets and apps.

But what will come next in educational technology? What needs are currently unmet and how could technology be used to improve the education experience in the future? These were just some of the questions, Dell’s Experience Design Group (EDG) wanted us to help them tackle by looking at the educational landscape.

The process

It was clear the best way to garner rich insights into the role of technology in various educational contexts was to undertake an ethnographic study. This form of investigation would give us the opportunity to observe how various technologies were actually being used in a variety of day-to-day situations by students, teachers and other important actors within educational settings. Structured interviews would then enable us to explore and confirm our observations in more detail.

Conducting research with young Dell users in schools

Given the significant differences in educational services and ICT usage in different regions and countries around the world a global study would be needed to deliver a robust platform of insights. Before rolling the study out globally however we needed to undertake a pilot in a single country to test out and refine our detailed research approach. Denmark was selected as an ideal country for this initial phase of work as it offered the opportunity to examine a wide variety of contrasting educational environments and usage of a wide variety of technologies.

We delivered an insights pack that included a detailed report, a visual scenario journey map and a 5-minute video providing visual and auditory context. The insights pack engaged a greater number of Dell departments in discussions about the education sector and product verticals.

Dell Desktop set-up for user testing
Dell deliverable map

The process

Throughout the process, we held collaborative huddles with Dell and the research team to discuss findings and iterate the approach. Additionally, co-sketching sessions were held to visualise the relationships and dynamics that happen within the education eco-system.

The win/win

Information technology has revolutionised teaching and education over the past few decades. Any technology company that can find new ways to continue delivering improvements in the world of education stands to enjoy the benefits of commercial success. Dell’s investment in ongoing technological innovation in this important area is an investment in the company’s continued future growth.