Candice Louw
Dr. sc. inf. (PhD)

• User Experience Design •

African Journal of Hospitality, Tourism and Leisure | Website redesign 2017

The client:
An emerging academic research journal wishing to improve its visibility and ability to attract high quality research articles (from 2017 and beyond) from a very niche, academic audience.

The Problem:
Academics are under tremendous pressure to publish research articles in approved, reputable and high-quality scholarly outlets such as journals. AJHTL's accreditation with local quality assurance bodies provided support for the growth of the journal, local academics as well as the sharing of local and indigenous knowledge in an open access fashion. An outdated website, overall poor usability scheme and unclear submission instructions hindered the journal to achieve its full potential on an international scale.

The Solution:
Redesign the website on the Weebly platform in order to create a more contemporary, yet academically sound, look and feel. Moreover, increase research paper submissions by providing clear, concise instructions to authors when submitting research papers to the journal for review.
Academic Publishing | Author User Journey Analysis:
The Academic Publishing User Journey ends with research either being published, or not published (phase 4 as illustrated in the figure above) - a very binary outcome. Reaching this outcome, however, can take very long and may only occur after many iterations.

Typically, a researcher submits their research for scholarly review (phase 1) and may then jump between phases 2 and 3 numerous times before reaching phase 4. Despite the time spent iterating between phases 2 and 3, the research may finally still be rejected in phase 4 resulting in no publication and having to restart the process at phase 1 by submitting to a different journal, conference etc.

By minimising the time between phases 1 - 4, however, more research submissions can be received, processed and feedback given to authors in a shorter time. This may result in the publication of not only more, but also higher quality research output for the journal.

Core Usability Aspects to Consider:
Create professional, modern interface fitting to theme; provide expedited and clear submission instructions to improve article submission rates from authors, thereby reducing overall turnaround time from submission to publication time.
Old Website Navigation:
The old AJHTL website navigation menu made it very difficult for authors to find out how to submit a research paper.
New Website Navigation:
The new, simplified AJHTL website navigation menu with simple one-word entries.
Additional facilities:
Introduction of an announcements page to facilitate two-way communication between the journal team and current/prospective authors. This creates a more personal feel to the submission process instead of receiving only an accept/reject response.
Colour Tones:
A selection of warm, earthly colour tones are used to convey the journal's roots, yet portray this in a modern way.
SCImago Journal & Country Rank
Through retrospective evaluation, we note that the journal was accepted for inclusion in Scopus indexing based (among other reasons) that the journal website was updated in 2017 to adhere to Scopus standards. Since the website redesign/update and inclusion in Scopus in 2017, the journal h-index has been showing healthy growth - certainly a most favourable outcome for all involved.

• Android App Design •

Plaques de Paris № 1

Plaques de Paris № 1 by Candice Louw
Plaques de Paris № 1 by Candice Louw
Plaques de Paris № 1 by Candice Louw
Plaques de Paris № 1 by Candice Louw
Plaques de Paris № 1 by Candice Louw

Hannibal Android Clock Widget

Will Graham (Hannibal TV Series) Clock Widget

View on Google Play

• PhD Thesis •


With the phenomenal growth that has been observed in the smartphone industry over the past few years it has become more evident that smartphones are not just about the hardware and device manufacturer anymore, but also the supported Operating System (OS) and content enriching applications (apps). Stock-standard, static OSs are a thing of the past and have given way to dynamic, customisable OSs that support the installation of additional, mobile apps on the fly.

Such freedom, however, comes at a price. Smartphone apps that are written by cyber criminals are naturally also able to harness the full capabilities of these smart devices and access the information stored on them – possibly without a user’s knowledge or consent. With the recent introduction of wearable devices that act as an extension of the smartphone, cyber criminals may now produce apps that are even more invasive to the smartphone user’s everyday life.

With smartphone usage becoming more popular, in both personal and professional capacities in an overlapping fashion, cyber criminals can now potentially gain access to not only personal user information, but also sensitive organisational information stored on these devices.

By introducing the Smartphone Application User Security Competency Evolution (SAUSCE) model, this thesis aims to provide a model that may be used to demonstrate the typical competency evolution that a smartphone user may undergo by asking 5 main questions including: (1) Is the user in possession of a smartphone? (2) Does the user make use of the smartphone in their possession? (3) Does the user customise the smartphone by downloading and installing apps? (4) Is the smartphone rooted or jailbroken/are apps installed that require root or privileged access? (5) Are developer options active on the smartphone/does the user write their own apps and deploy them on the device?

The reasoning behind why exactly these 5 questions are asked becomes clearer as the thesis progresses. As a result, the model may be used to establish a particular smartphone user’s competency level which, in turn, simplifies the task of providing level-appropriate training and/or awareness.

Additionally, the proposed model may also be used (by individuals, organisations, institutions etc.) in determining whether a specific user could, for example, be classified as a potential risk to (their own or organisational) information security. Initial verification of the model’s use in an operational environment (university) proved its viability and ability to be successfully utilised in establishing the maturity of not only an individual, but also groups of individuals as a whole.

The versatility of the model was further illustrated through its successful implementation by a variety of approaches including a web portal, hybrid Android smartphone app, online questionnaire and paper-based questionnaire.

Candice Louw