Outschool - Product Design Process Audit

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Outschool is an EdTech company that provides unique educational experiences to a global and diverse community of young people through its digital learning marketplace. Outschool is seen as an educational lifeline for homeschoolers, those who seek extra learning support, and for those looking to learn what they love. With the goal of expanding its global audience and building an educational marketplace that does not exclude potential users and buyers, Outschool reached out to Pause and Effect to support with answering the following question:

How might Outschool's product design process be enhanced through an equity and inclusion lens?

What we did:

Our equity audit began with an assessment of Outschool’s design processes, existing user data and design artifacts. We wanted to understand not only how design decisions were made, but which user groups were prioritized and reflected through design artifacts and processes.

To complete this work, we conducted a series of internal stakeholder interviews (inclusive of design, product, marketing, user research, supply teams), and reviewed user personas and segmentation data to uncover gaps and opportunities.


Our research process led us to recommendations pertaining to data collection, research screening, co-design, a clear DEI statement, and segmentation.

Our work with Outschool continued through participation in product review meetings (to provide real time coaching and feedback), learning experiences, and the creation of an Inclusive Design Tool.


"The Pause and Effect team designed and executed a thoughtful audit of our product development process. They were able to summarize many trends into a cohesive report, helping us concretely identify and name gaps we previously felt but couldn't quite put our finger on. Their audit helped us begin important conversations on how we can create a more inclusive customer experience at Outschool. We were so happy with the audit that we are continuing to work with Pause and Effect to address some of the product, research and marketing gaps they identified."

- Jing Jin, Head of Design

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