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Key Insights

Data was rigorously analysed using affinity mapping and thematic analysis. Results indicated barriers that prevent people from growing food at home as well as factors that encourage growing food. The following four key actionable insights helped to drive design development:

- People who have the desire to grow their own food are often intimidated by their lack of knowledge for how to successfully cultivate food.
- People want to be confident that the time, money, and effort they invest in gardening activities will yield results.

- People are inspired by others and often seek advice from others with more gardening experience to aid them in their own gardening endeavours.
- People want more control over the food they eat, however, transparency about what happens to produce before it gets to the consumer is low.

Design Iteration

Design development involved reframing insights into opportunities in the form of How Might We statements. These statements were prioritised on a matrix based on their potential to encourage growing food at home and the potential for enhancing the user experience.

The Jobs To Be Done Framework helped generate user requirements, which translated into the development of key features. These features were then prioritised using the MoSCoW method.

To ensure user-centred design, low-fidelity prototypes were generated and tested with users. Multiple design iterations of varying fidelity were developed and tested and feedback from testing was used to develop a final design to align with user goals.

Experience Design Principles

Experience design principles were developed based on primary research to define users' fundamental goals and help to create a meaningful product for aspiring growers.

Sophie Bird

I am an aspiring UX designer interested in transforming interactions and facilitating positive experiences between people and products/services.

In 2020, I completed a BS in Psychology in Washington State, USA. As an undergraduate, I was exposed to courses involving User Experience which piqued my interest in design and led me to pursue a postgraduate degree in UX Design. As a hodophile with a desire to expand my cultural frame of reference, I decided to fly across the pond to complete my studies at Loughborough University.

Coming from a psychology background helped me develop a keen interest in behaviour, and my postgraduate studies have nurtured this interest through the practice of understanding user behaviour in a design context. I value the interdisciplinary aspect of UX design and feel that this Masters course has shaped the way I view the world and how people interact with it. I am looking forward to opportunities where I can use a design approach and mindset to meaningfully contribute to creating viable solutions to social problems.

Major project

It’s Grow Time - Teaching aspiring growers how to grow their own food at home.


Upon completion of UXathon 2020, a day-long design sprint competition at Loughborough University that involved collaboration with start-ups based in Hong Kong, my team was awarded Best Branding for our design. Our app, DeLight, is a food subscription and meal-planning app which helps working individuals achieve their health and fitness goals, promoting a healthy and efficient lifestyle.

I also participated in the Ford Fund Smart Mobility Challenge 2020, which took place over several weeks. The challenge was to create a solution to overcome mobility obstacles, and my team focussed on the reduction in physical activity associated with working from home as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. My team was selected as a winner for our concept, Home ACTive, which encourages people to be physically active throughout their day in a work from home environment without sacrificing their productivity.