Implementing design research that takes culture into account.

Why do college students use Tinder?


Everyone was looking, and yet no one wanted to be looked at - such was the paradox of Tinder. Although in fall 2014 Tinder was at the height of its popularity among college students, the stigma users faced being on the app served as a primary barrier to engagement.


In order to discern why college students use Tinder and how to make app usage a less stigmatized experience, I conducted 12 hour and a half long β€œin situ,” ethnographic interviews with college Tinder users

In addition, I also conducted a half hour long observation and usability testing session to observe how they navigate the app.


In addition to forming the basis for my Sociology/Anthropology senior thesis, this research led to the creation of a user journey and personas.

Areas that I identified should be changed in order to decrease stigma and increase engagement, including adding the school and profession of users, were implemented in future versions of the app.