Type: Work Project
Duration: 6 Months
Tools: Figma, Illustrator
My Role: UX Designer, Usability Tester

Enhancing Glean with Anonymous Note Sharing


Glean, a note-taking software, seeks to increase its value for educational institutions by introducing anonymous note sharing for students with disabilities. The proposed solution, Shared Collections, allows admins to create a collection and determine which students can access it.


The objective is to broaden Glean's user base, encompassing notetakers and students previously unable to use the platform. This feature will also streamline admin tasks, reducing their role as intermediaries, and lay the groundwork for future collaboration and teamwork enhancements.

A storyboard describing the Admin scenario.

  • Shared Collections flow
  • Shared Collections user flow

    We carried out customer interviews and gathered feedback on the proposed Shared Collections feature. We used this information to identify the advantages for students, admins, and the overall product vision.

    User Research

    Attendees from various universities provided feedback on the three proposed options for sharing Glean events anonymously. The options included shared collections, anonymized usernames, and PDF export. Shared collections were well-received by most participants, as they offered admin oversight and reduced the workload for accommodation coordinators. Anonymized usernames were seen as a good option, but some concerns were raised regarding remembering and managing the usernames. PDF export was appreciated for its simplicity, but some participants felt it was better suited for users not yet comfortable with Glean. In general, the shared collections option was the most favoured, as it streamlined the process and provided the necessary transparency and admin oversight. The main concerns were the potential admin burden of pairing up students and note-takers and the need for secure access to the shared information. Despite these challenges, participants believed that these options would help reduce the workload and improve the overall note-taking experience.


    Shared Collections offers several benefits for students, admins, and the product vision:

    • Students:
      • Peer notetakers can create higher quality notes using Glean.
      • Recipients gain access to audio and transcription along with notes, boosting their independence.
      • Assists students who cannot attend classes in person.
    • Admins
      • Minimal initial setup, typically required only once per semester.
      • Ability to spot check notes for quality.
      • Improved service for students needing peer notes.
    • Product vision:
      • Contributes to the goal of reaching one million users by encouraging institutions to adopt Glean for peer notetakers.
      • Recognises that Glean may not suit all students and expands support for those needing additional note-taking assistance.
      • Reinforces the broader positioning of the Glean for Education (GfE) offering.
      • We identified 59 insights supporting the development of Shared Collections, ranking it as the 8th most requested feature.

    Integrating Shared Collections into Glean presents significant benefits for students, admins, and the overall product vision. By enabling anonymous note sharing, Glean becomes more inclusive and valuable to educational institutions. With this feature, Glean moves closer to achieving its goal of one million users and expanding support for students with disabilities.