Based on the design considerations mentioned in the earlier posts, I started exploring possibilities of restructuring the information hierarchy and visual elements to make it easier both to fill, as well as comprehend and analyze the report card. The constraints of which were that it had to be a double sided A3, black and white (could be printed on any colour paper), used fonts that were available on Windows operation systems and designed in Microsoft Excel.
Exploration 1: I started off using two typefaces, Arial & Georgia–a standard serif and sans-serif pairing. My main aim was to figure out a way to remove the need to flip pages to read the legend while having to analyze the grades, and to make it easy to see the progress over the two terms.
This exploration was too heavy on the eye, and there seemed to be too many lines that were obstructing the reader from the content of the report card.
Exploration 2: I set the entire report card in varying weights and styles of Corbel in the next exploration which is a clean sans-serif typeface and works well in print. I also removed some of the boxes around the subject fields to make the layout less claustrophobic. The grading system and the section indicators were made grey to reduce the attention being grabbed by them.
Exploration 3: This is the same as exploration 2 except that the grading system is enclosed in a grey box to separate it from the rest of the content.
Exploration 4: Some of the descriptions have been taken to the opposite page under the life skills section to free up more space to add more indicators, and health status now uses the left column on the last page and frees up space to include a section on parent’s observations. Inclusion of progress bars on the right side of term 2 to indicate ascent or decline in the grades for each subject.
These were the first set of explorations that I took to my guide. Although this seemed like the right direction to take, there were quite a few hierarchy and comprehension issues. The representation of the grading system was not consistent, and section 3A & B, since they were on the last page, did not have a similar format for the two terms as in the other sections. One common denominator in these explorations is the absence of the overall grade (culmination of all formative and summative assessments for all subjects as well as co-scholastic activities), for which justification has been provided in an earlier post.