Katie McCurdy

Katie McCurdy

Designing with Empathy

You’re under the gun. You have deadlines, developers are waiting on you, and even though you know you should probably talk to your intended users at some point, it just doesn’t feel possible to fit into your workflow. And hey, if Henry Ford had asked his customers what they wanted, they would have said ‘a faster horse,’ right?

Ouch! There are a lot of misunderstandings about what user research actually is, how to do it, its cost, and the value it brings to the product design process. In this talk, Katie covers these basics and presents some specific, interface-level examples of how up-front user research and mid-project usability testing have helped improve designs and create products that people love. You’ll walk away with tips for advocating for and incorporating user research into your next project in a cost-effective way, and you’ll understand the powerful difference between building empathy with your users, and ‘doing what they say.’

About Katie

Katie McCurdy is a User Experience (UX) Designer and Researcher focusing on healthcare. She uses visualization and empathy to empower patients and improve the healthcare experience, and she advocates for user research on all of her projects. She has worked with diverse clients and collaborators including Open mHealth, Medivo, LabCorp, Johnson & Johnson, Verizon, WaterAid, and the awesome local Burlington start-up Notabli.

Her recent work includes the design of a platform for visualizing and making sense of digital health data, a mobile app and responsive web app for presenting lab results to patients and doctors, a responsive website for eye doctors, a tablet app for viewing lab test results, and helping build the internal design practice at Notabli.

Katie holds a Masters of Science in Information with a specialization in Human-Computer Interaction from the University of Michigan School of Information. She lives, skis, hikes, and organizes local healthcare events in Burlington, VT.