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Julie Kientz

Summer 2022

Co-Design with Parents of Young Children

We are looking for students for the Summer 2022 to help with running co-design sessions with design researchers and parents of young children under the age of 5 from a variety of backgrounds. The goal of this work will be to work toward the design of a culturally competent mobile application for helping parents understand and celebrate their child’s development and connect with early intervention resources if needed.

Activities of this research group will include developing co-design session activities, running sessions with a diverse group of parents, and assisting with data analysis. 

Ideal qualifications:

  • Experience with developing and facilitating participatory design techniques or an interest in learning
  • The majority of these workshops will take place on weekends at a site near the Othello light rail station in July and August due to parent availability, so availability on weekends is needed (though not every weekend)
  • A bonus would be if you can converse in Spanish, Vietnamese, or Somali

This research group will be led by Professor Julie Kientz, Dr. Kendra Liljenquist, and PhD Students Akeiylah DeWitt and Leslie Coney and collaboration with Seattle Children’s.

To apply for this DRG, please fill out this survey by Friday, June 10, 2022.

We will confirm availability to join this group the week of June 13th and will schedule meetings to begin after June 20th. For any questions, please email Dr. Julie Kientz (

Summer 2022

Adaption of Tuberculosis (TB) Treatment Support App for HIV/PrEP Treatment


Oral antiretroviral therapy (ART) is highly effective for people living with HIV to suppress viral replication, and oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) reduces the risk of HIV acquisition; however, monitoring and improving drug adherence remains challenging. 

The TB-Treatment Support Tools (TB-TST) project, led by Dr. Sarah Iribarren of the UW’s School of Nursing, has been actively working to provide TB care providers in Argentina with a mobile web application that helps monitor and support individuals with active TB. The TB-TST has shown promising results for aiding in the treatment of patients. 

The purpose of this DRG is to conduct research into how the TB-TST can be adapted to support patients being treated with ART and/or PrEP.  We will conduct a qualitative study to understand features and user-interface desired by clients and providers. 


  • Experience in qualitative research including individual interviews or focus groups. Ideal candidates will have knowledge in fast paced iterative-cycle usability testing techniques with an emphasis on translating findings into data-supported UX design recommendations.
  • Completion of HCDE 412/417/517/519 is desirable but not required. 
  • UI/UX design experience. Familiarity with Figma prototyping is a plus.
  • Registering for 2-3 credits (3 hour commitment per credit)
  • Ability to attend and present progress reports/deliverables in weekly 90 min. meeting over zoom on tentatively Tuesdays at 2 pm  

Note this DRG is full for Summer and no longer accepting applicants.

Summer 2022

Participatory Design with Children and Researchers

We are looking for students for the Summer 2022 to help with running KidsTeam UW, an intergenerational co-design team of children (ages 6 – 12) and design researchers. There is rich work around how to interact with adults and children together in the co-design space, the role of design techniques in co-design, and the different stages and phases of co-design. You have the opportunity to help us understand this space.

Activities of this research group will include interacting as an adult design partner with children in co-design, working with researchers on multiple projects involving children and design, and running overall logistics to support the intergenerational design team.

This DRG will require you to participate in KidsTeam UW in the summer 2022 for the following dates:

  • Tuesdays and Thursdays: 60 minutes reading seminar: July 5, 7, 12, 14, 19, 21, and August 2, 2022.
  • Week of July 25 – 29, 2022, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm co-design sessions with children.

Students who have completed HCDE 318/418/518 and/or HCDE 417/517 or have relevant experience will be given priority.  Alternatively, students who have experience with youth mentorship, learning sciences, education, and child development will also be considered. 

Prior experience working with children (ages 0 – 17) is a requirement (e.g., tutoring, teaching, coaching, child-care, summer camps, etc.)

This research group will be led by Associate Professor Jason Yip (iSchool), with support from Dr. Julie Kientz (Professor, HCDE), Dr. Jin Ha Lee (Professor, iSchool), and Dr. Alexis Hiniker (Associate Professor, iSchool).

To apply for this DRG, please fill out this survey by Friday, May 27, 2022.

We will schedule meetings to confirm your availability and experience in the month of June 2022, and make final decisions by early June 2022.

For any questions, please email Dr. Jason Yip at


Spring 2022

Developing a Heuristic Evaluation Method for Child Health Apps

Mobile apps for parenting and child health guidance have recently increased in popularity. While there is potential for these apps to support parent knowledge and monitoring a child’s health, evaluating these technologies is challenging in the early stages of design processes or non-medical contexts. In this Directed Research Group (DRG), we are interested in understanding how extending the heuristic evaluation method in this space might support the identification of issues earlier in design processes.

Planned activities: In this DRG, we will spend the first weeks reading papers about heuristic evaluation methods and how to develop them. We will explore existing heuristic evaluation methods (e.g., Nielsen’s heuristics) and identify key features that heuristic evaluations for mobile health apps should address. During the next weeks of the DRG, we will engage with parents and pediatricians to develop and test a set of heuristics for evaluating child health and parenting mobile apps. We look forward to working with students interested in mobile health apps, child development, health equity, cultural relevance in design, and heuristic evaluation methods. Students will have an opportunity to collaborate on future projects in this area.

Required availability:

  • Attend our meeting twice a week (in-person) Mondays and Wednesdays from 5:00pm-5:50pm.
  • Dedicate at least 3 hours to work each week outside of meetings
  • Register for 2 to 3 credits of HCDE 496/596

This DRG will be led by HCDE Ph.D. student Akeiylah DeWitt, with guidance from Professor Julie Kientz. This DRG is open to both undergraduate and graduate students. Note this DRG is at capacity for spring and no longer accepting applications.

Spring 2022

Child Care Access in Seattle: Mapping and Visualization 

Led by: Rebecca Michelson, PhD Candidate, HCDE 
With guidance from faculty advisors Professor Julie Kientz and Professor Daniela Rosner
Wednesdays, 3 - 4:40 p.m. on Zoom

Project Overview
This DRG is a hands-on opportunity to deliver on information and advocacy needs expressed by the Greater Seattle Child Care Business Coalition. The goal of the DRG is to co-create with GSCCB an interactive map that features childcare and daycare centers as well as providers in each neighborhood. Activities include: collecting and reviewing data, learning about mapping platforms, and iteratively developing a beta map with opportunities for feedback from the community partnership. Students will get the chance to learn from guest speakers on topics of data viz, mapping for social change, and childcare policy. 

The project is driven by a partnership with the Greater Seattle Child Care Business Coalition who serves as a learning and workforce development arm among childcare providers, policymakers, and regulatory agencies. (Read more about some of their recent work here).

We are looking for:

  • 4-6 undergraduate or graduate students
  • Folks with experience or strong interest in data visualization, mapping, and usability studies
  • Nice to have:
    • Passion or domain expertise for childcare or caregiving access
  • You do not have to be a method or subject expert to participate!

DRG Format:

  • Meeting once a week for 1.5 hours on Zoom, with 2 hours of asynchronous design research in between sessions: Wednesdays 3-4:30pm PST. *There may be some flexibility in this course timing, if this time absolutely does not work for you!
  • 1-2 credits
  • This DRG will be entirely remote via Zoom
  • Composition: we will have 1-2 project working groups, based on the number of students who apply

Students Participating in the DRG will:

  • Participate in co-design and planning of a resource to launch by the end of Spring quarter with a local community partner
  • Brainstorm and research best approaches to share information about childcare access in Seattle
  • Conduct user research activities for audiences of this prototype
  • Move from concepts to prototype in a short period of time
  • Engage with design research long-term with possibility for a Fall 2022 DRG

To apply, please complete this short application by March 18th, 2022. The Google form will close at 11:59pm on March 18th and decisions will be emailed by March 23rd. Folks will be selected based on interests, skillsets, and availability. Please contact Rebecca Michelson if you have any questions at 

Dr. Kientz's Research Group archive