Onboarding new users

College applicants and those who support the application process (such as parents and Guidance Counselors) sign up for accounts through the same portal. When creating an account, the user follows a different path depending on their role.


“Support” Users weren’t sure which account type to select when signing up for the platform. We determined this by analyzing help requests that came in after we implemented the first design.


Focused Task Context

The original design asked the user to choose their role and sub-role on the same page. Once a user selected “Support”, “Student” was still available.

I moved the sub-role selection to a separate page to focus the user on this task.


Reduced Visual Information

It also included a specific icon for each sub-role for Support users and only the name of the role – no description of what it meant.

The unique icons for each sub-role were adding visual noise, but not much information. So I ditched those on the new page.



Usability tests showed a reduced error rate on signup, and there were less Help Desk requests about sign up after we implemented the new workflow.