PROFESSIONAL SUMMARY

UX research professional with a background in human-computer interaction (PhD) and cognitive psychology (Master). Possessing over 10 years of qualitative/quantitative research design, management, execution, and share out experience, I’ve demonstrated ability to efficiently work with designers and program managers in industry setting in my most recent job. I engage with customers and turn their needs and frustrations into valuable insights and actionable recommendations throughout product design processes. UX Research is a career path that aligns with my passions, values, and personality. I’m excited to explore new possibilities of contributing and improving the end users’ experience.

QUALIFICATIONS

Generative and evaluative UX research; remote and in-person studies; competitive analysis; ethnography; interviews; surveys; field studies; experiment studies; contextual inquiry; focus groups; qualitative and statistical data analysis; data synthesis; literature reviews; research design; research reports; presentation; research subject recruitment; prototyping; participatory design

WORK HISTORY
User Experience Researcher, Office Media Group  

Microsoft via Aditi Consulting, Sep 2020 – Present

 

As one of the four researchers for Office Media Group (200~ employees), I lead exploratory and evaluative research to innovate new products and improve current products, such as Office Stream web/mobile app and video feature sets. I primarily drive qualitative research efforts across different feature teams to generate solid foundational customer knowledge and inform feature prioritization for the MVPs.

  • Engage team stakeholders (designers, PMs, engineers, and data scientists) in research processes, ask for and integrate their feedback in research to obtain their buy-in, provide regular updates, and ensure our product design is genuinely customer-centered.  

  • Understand stakeholders’ needs, transfer their design questions to strategic or tactical research questions, craft study plans, write interview/discussion guides and test scripts for live conversations with customers or unmoderated concept/usability testing.

  • Identify target customers, write screener questions, recruit and run the studies with the right participants among internal and external customers, and potential future customers.

  • Synthesize customer data, deliver detailed share out reports and summarized personas through storytelling, present customers behavior observations and insights to stakeholders, facilitate discussion on the findings and implications.

  • Analyze competitive product features and customer reviews to support designers to identify market gaps and customer pain points when using our competitors.

  • Provide UX consultant services to empower program managers and designers across different product teams to conduct evaluative research by themselves and enable them to engage directly with customers.

  • Teach program manager and engineer interns basic UX research skills and supervise them to conduct remote evaluative research to validate their assumptions and prototypes.

  • Support designers and PMs on the feature prioritization decision-making by providing a holistic understanding of the needs and pains across different types of customers.

User Experience Researcher, Human-Centered Intelligent System team

Microsoft via Allovus, Mar 2020 – June 2020


Designed and executed evaluative user studies to validate feature design decisions across different teams for Office. 

  • Designed user research and created research protocols, collected user data by conducting two moderated user studies and four unmoderated user studies with 80 participants, analyzed data, and translated the findings into over 40 design insights and actionable recommendations. 

  • Authored and co-authored 7 study reports and presented the reports to cross-functional partners in order to provide guidance to product and feature design. Study reports were shared with stakeholders, program managers, designers, and other researchers.   

  • Provided UX consultant service to empower program managers and designers across different product teams who had no research resources but needed to conduct research by themselves.  

  • Conducted two in-depth competitive analyses to help cross-functional teams identify new opportunities in improving current product design. 

  • Complied literature reviews to support defining research questions and hypotheses.

UX Consultant 

Gracetech, Seattle, Jan 2020 – Present


Successfully helped this non-profit startup create the first-ever UX research practice to evaluate and improve the user experience of its featured product, a Chinese Bible Study mobile application (iDigest). 
  • Conducted competitive analyses to help the product team identify its competitors and understand the trends of Bible study mobile apps in both US and Chinese markets.
  • Interviewed stakeholders and targeted users to understand users’ needs and create journey maps. 
  • Helped the product team prioritize users’ needs and provided actionable design recommendations to address these needs in the next version of the product.    
  • Ran user acceptance testing for the first version of the product to verify whether it achieved the major purposes it was built for.  
Researcher, Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team (COASST)

University of Washington, Seattle, Mar 2017 - Dec 2019

Design research and analyze more than a decade of collected human subject data to better understand program needs and to provide guidance on best practices in designing successful citizen science programs

  • Transformed program into a working program on participant research by identifying obstacles, redefining human-centered research goals, reintegrating resources, formulating and implementing research management strategies, and producing top-tier journal publications and professional talks.

  • Designed mixed-methods and longitudinal survey studies to guide program managers’ understanding of participants’ dynamic motivational needs, presenting the results as a set of recommendations that led to better recruitment and retention strategies.

  • Optimized, reorganized, verified, and analyzed large human subject datasets (3500+ participants) derived from multimethod collection efforts in order to develop a comprehensive codebook on participant motivations and identities (qualitative) and to test original hypotheses on motivation and perception over time (quantitative).

  • Managed the participant recruitment process and trained interns on data entry and qualitative coding in order to create new human subject datasets (1600+ participants) for revealing the patterns of scientific thinking development and motivational needs among citizen participants.

  • Supported preparation of two highly competitive National Science Foundation grant proposals on informal STEM learning, resulting in one award of 300k.

User Researcher, Human-Computer Interaction Lab

​University of Maryland, College Park,  Sep 2011 - Dec 2016

Identified research topics and designed 10+ user research studies using qualitative and quantitative methods, working alongside program managers, product designers, developers, educators, domain experts, and practitioners

  • Simultaneously managed multiple research projects and maintained partnerships across institutions and organizations, resulting in the successful and on-time delivery of project outcomes, including top-tier peer-reviewed publications, official reports, grant proposals, and presentations.

  • Conducted mixed-methods studies on users’ collaborative information sharing motivation and behaviors in order to provide design insights for complex socio-technical systems and give recommendations for helping users employ technology to improve their professional and daily lives.

  • Collected and analyzed qualitative data of 100+ participants through inductive and deductive coding processes to identify themes, and analyzed 5,000+ quantitative data points through descriptive and regression statistical analysis to discover underlying trends and patterns.

  • Shaped product design (participatory design, iterative prototyping) and evaluation (focus group, usability testing) of a gamified citizen science mobile app, and provided professional feedback on integrating research findings into the app design.

Researcher Intern, Human-Computer Interaction Group 

​Microsoft Research Asia, Beijing, Jun 2009 - Apr 2010

Defined research goals and conducted online and offline studies on cross-cultural information sharing behavior

  • Conducted interview studies with 30+ employees that aimed to identify important scenarios that reflected how employees use social network services in enterprise systems.

  • Designed scenario-based survey studies reaching more than 10,000+ global employees in order to explore the cultural differences between China and the US with regard to information sharing behaviors.

  • Authored and presented one top-tier UX conference publication that provided insights into culturally sensitive design features of social network platforms.

Cognitive Psychology Researcher

Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, Sep 2008 - Jun 2011

Conducted lab studies on how visual attention is captured differently in looking at the faces of those belonging to one’s own race versus the faces of people of other races

  • Recruited undergraduate participants across 10+ local universities.

  • Designed and coded complex lab behavior experiments in E-Prime, including running the experiments, collecting and analyzing data, and interpreting and presenting analysis results in written reports and oral presentations.

Education

Ph.D. in Information Studies, University of Maryland, 2016

Master of Cognitive Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 2011

Bachelor of Science, Psychology, Beijing Forestry University, 2008

TECHNICAL SKILLS

Remote UX platform: Usertesting.com; Survey tool: Qualtrics

Data analysis software: Dedoose, Nvivo, TAMS Analyzer, SPSS, Excel, Google Sheets

Programming languages: Proficient in R, graduate coursework in JavaScript

HONORS & AWARDS
  • All-S.T.A.R. Fellowship for outstanding scholars (16 awards out of over 4,000 students), University of Maryland (2015-2016)

  • Dean’s Fellowship at the University of Maryland (2012-2013 & 2013-2014)

  • ACM Computer Supported Collaborative Work Honorable Mention (Top 5% out of 571 submitted papers), 2016

  • Human-Computer Interaction International, Best Paper Award (1 of 12 best papers among 1663 submitted), 2013

SERVICE & VOLUNTEERING
  • Review papers for UX conferences (CHI, CHI PLAY, CSCW, iConference) and other peer-reviewed journals.

  • Foster puppies and support puppy training for Guide Dogs for the Blind.

  • Prepare and serve meals at a shelter for people experiencing homelessness, Seattle's Union Gospel Mission

LANGUAGES

Chinese - Native

English - Full professional proficiency