TCUK: Information Design 101: My thoughts

I attended the Information Design 101 workshop run by Robert Hempsall.


(from TCUK website)

In the spirit of the topics of usability and accessibility, Information Design 101 is an introduction to the principles of making information easy to understand. Taking a document collectively selected by potential workshop attendees, this workshop will guide attendees through a number of basic information design techniques, to end the session with a new improved (and easier to use) document. These techniques will include typography, plain language and document structure – all demonstrated using everyday software. This workshop will be a hands on session, with attendees encouraged to bring a laptop with Microsoft Word to try out some of the techniques themselves.

My thoughts

We looked at a form that voters would use to apply for postal voting.
Robert encouraged us to bring our laptops so we could work on a word document and go through the stages with him. This hands on approach was valuable as it made you pay attention to the advice being offered.
There was a lot of discussion about how you can make forms easier to understand and unsurprisingly in a room full of technical communicators, there was a lot of opinion.
Good design, good workflow, and plain English would seem to be key points of this.
I found myself questioning a form I had to fill in a couple of days ago. That very much needed a bit of attention.
I need to go and try some of what I picked up in this workshop.
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