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Kindergarten remembered...

Justify the importance of your inquiry via...

The Interview for Empathy

The kick-off:
“Instead of just telling you about design thinking, we want to immediately have you jump right in and experience it for yourself.


This is going to feel rushed; that’s okay. Roll up your sleeves and get ready to lean into the project.”
Have participants partner up in pairs.

You have “Partner A” (the interviewer for Round 1) and “Partner B” to simplify your language in these interactive steps.
“Your challenge is to redesign the classroom experience . . . for your partner.”
“The most important part of designing for someone is to gain empathy for that person.”

“One way to do this is to have a good conversation.”

Be clear about the logistics of the interviews:
“Partner A will have three minutes to interview Partner B, and then we will tell you when to switch.”

KEEP YOUR PARTNER TALKING FOR THE ENTIRE TIME!!!“As a starting point, ask your partner the questions you developed. 

“As a starting point, ask your partner the questions you developed. If your partner stops talking use the following sentence stems.... 

“What activities were most meaningfully? Why was it meaningful? How did you get along with others? What did you like the best? Tell me about the time ....  How did you feel ... What was most challenging... "

Take notes... highlight things you find interesting or surprising.

“Let’s begin!”

Interview for Empathy

Round 1 Frame 1. Interviewer (A): Use your questions to keep your 'User (B)' speaking for the entire time! Take notes. When time is up...

Round 2 - SWITCH roles and repeat. 


Round 2 at Frame 2. Interviewer (A): Review the answers in Frame 1. Pick most interesting thing(s) to ask more questions about. Keep your partner 'User' (B)' speaking for the entire time to get enough data!

After time is up, SWITCH roles and repeat. 



... user input to ask why questions in the interview



Open-Ended Question

Class: Open -vs- Closed 

Open -vs-Closed Questions ...

Compare the Results 

Open-ended Questions, Part 2 



A Business Perspective