Example persona

Interactive Web Design I · DM2280B spring 2013 · Corcoran College of Art + Design
Instructor: David Ramos alberto_ramos@corcoran.edu

This is an example persona, designed to help us evaluate designs for the Metro system.

Claire: Needs control

Claire arrived in D.C. two years ago, for a science PhD program at GWU.

“I love Metro, but you never know when the trains are going to come already, and I’m don’t know where to go.”

Claire comes from Brattleboro, Vermont. She arrived in D.C. directly out of college at UMass – this is her first time living outside of New England.

She suffers from a poor sense of direction, and readily admits this. She carries two paper maps of D.C. in her bag, always. She still has trouble navigating from Boston to her family home.

Claire seeks structure. She plans her days precisely, and deviations from her plans cause her anxiety. She rides Metro at off-peak hours because she dislikes the surprises of service disruptions and crowds. She avoids adding money to her SmartTrip card when there might be other people in line.


Age: 23
From: Brattleboro, Vermont
Occupation: Graduate student
Residence: Family friend’s basement apartment in Cleveland Park
Reading level: high
Education: some post-graduate work
Income: limited; fellowship and grant dependent
Disabilities: no mental or physical disabilities
Other: left-handed.


She uses computers in her research, especially statistical software. Others in her lab look to her for advice. Despite this trust from others, she is not a particularly confident computer user. She relies on training, help from others, and following instructions. She has an excellent ability to remember procedures, buttressed by careful notetaking. When faced with unexpected problems, she prefers to seek help, and quicly grows frustrated.

She dislikes touchscreens and finds them silly.

Clarie owns an older Android phone handed-down by her mother (prefers to save money and, in fact, shares in a family phone plan).

Metro use

She rides Metro 6–12 times a week, using it as her major form of transportation, along with the bus and walking. She’s much more comfortable on busses than underground because she can see where she’s going. Living in upper northwest, without a car, she takes the bus often and, the rest of the time, walks down the hill to Cleveland Park Metro.

Claire owns a SmartTrip card and can usually recall its balance to within a few dollars. She never adds money on the bus, because of a traumatic five-minute attempt at adding money the first time she bought the SmartTrip card.