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Context: In the summer of 2013, I worked as a user experience intern for IBM in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. I was about to start my final semester as an Information Science major at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. I was assigned to the team that worked on Rational Requirements Composer; this tool is intended to be used for managing the software development lifecycle.

Skills Used: UX Design Icon css


  • I was not used to working on such small parts of the interface of a large application - in retrospect, the "small parts," were probably because of both the Agile work environment and that the software had already been built.
  • Remote user testing (and working remotely with coworkers) took some getting used to.


  • Evaluated the existing Rational application as a set of fresh eyes who had never seen it before.
  • Using Balsamiq, I put together wireframes for the redesign of a requirements import wizard.
  • I conducted remoted user testing to evaluate portions of the Rational interface, specifically the "grab and reorder" tool.


During my role as an intern at IBM, I got my first real-world taste for working as a UX practitioner. The team I was part of had several local members and several distributed remote members.

As an intern at IBM, I worked on small parts of the overall Rational interface. On school projects, we typically designed full interfaces - not small parts of them. When I joined the team, Rational had already largely been built and was in the maintenance phase. We were making incremental changes during sprints, rather than doing full-fledged initial implementation of the product.

One of my tasks was to make an attempt at redesigning the workflow for the requirements import wizard. Using Balsamiq, I put together a set of wireframes that I later presented to the team during a phone call. Due to non-disclosure, I cannot show these designs here.

In addition, I also had the opportunity to develop expectancy tests and conduct them with both in-person and remote users. After conducting these tests, I wrote up a basic summary of the results.

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