Lingyuan Li
IxD | UX

Unlock CU (2019)

Explore Clemson University Campus via AR Gamification


The project aims to create an app to encourage students to explore the campus and get information about important buildings for their current and future use.


On-boarding; AR treasure hunt; Incentive


Lingyuan Li, John Armstrong, Mengyuan Zhang

My Roles

Brainstormed; Conducted interviews; Processed and analyzed the data; Designed; Made low-fidelity wireframe and high-fidelity visual design; Made and Iterated the prototype; Wrote the report

1. Research Key Needs
Unlock CU (2019)


We asked Clemson students about how they familiarized the campus and how they find information about the campus facilities.

  • 6 in-depth semi-structured interviews (Clemson students)

  • Transformed interview data to need statements

We determined primary needs and secondary needs by adopting the affinity diagramming

Problem Statements

  • New students are unfamiliar with the campus and reluctant to explore it.

  • Many educational resources are wasted and idle.

  • For upperclassmen, information about campus buildings is not updated often.

  • Existing apps do not provide detailed specific information.

2. Brainstorm Design Ideas
Unlock CU (2019)

(Scroll over the picture above to view the whole sketch)


Make students have a good understanding of the Clemson campus in an interactive and interesting way

How Might We & Crazy 8's

In 10 minutes, we created 24 ideas. Augmented reality via gamification was the winner.


Based on the result from Crazy 8's, I sketched the storyboard. I integrated AR gamification with the map-based application.

Unlock CU (2019)

Physical and Social Context

Physical Context Example: Hendrix Student Center. Students can pick up their TigerOne card(student ID card) on the first floor. There are also lots of restaurants: Subway, Panda Express, Peppino’s Pizzeria, '55 Exchange Ice Cream Shop, etc. Students can buy laptops and peripherals in the computer store on the first floor. Besides, annual career fairs are held here.

Social Context Example: A student living in the core is trying to find his/her RA, but it turns out the RAs for all core campus buildings are situated in the core dining hall, not the core residence halls.  The student opens the app, looks under core campus, and finds out that there is indeed an RA desk nearby to answer questions.

Unlock CU (2019)

AR Treasure Hunt & Information Hub

  • Buildings that are very important to students on the campus are chosen by us for users to unlock via the app.

  • When students arrive at the building, they use the app to scan the building, then an AR item will pop up on the phone screen.

  • Once clicking the AR item, students will be offered information about the place. These important places on the map in the application would initially look locked and grey. Once students check the places, the places will be unlocked and the icons will become colorized.

  • After unlocking all the places and collecting all the AR items, students can get a free Tiger T-shirt as an incentive!

  • For upperclassmen who already played the game, they can check the updated information about buildings at any time.

3. Finalize the Prototype


Welcome students and excite them through the experience ahead. The on-boarding pages help students understand how to use the app in a more interactive and interesting way!

Useful, detailed information

Instead of short general information about a building students can search on Google, students can know what they can do and expect in the building (e.g., office, events, etc).


Students can also use the app as a real-time campus map