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New York State Courts Signage (2017)

The NYS Courts Signage Project was a Design for America NYU and New York State Unified Court System collaboration tackling a problem many of us will eventually face: navigating courthouses. With support from Rochelle Klempner the Access to Justice program, we created a design audit of NY State Courts way-finding systems to assess their current state and to provide potential solutions. Through human-centered design principles and the iterative design process we aimed to answer: how can we help people of diverse backgrounds better navigate NYS courts?

Project Leads: Jasmine Chabra, Sameehan Patel

Experience & Service Designers: Sara Camnasio, Gabriella Cammarata, Lillian Warner, Shuling Chen

Graphic Designer Gabriella Cammarata

Project Mentors Anne-Laure Fayard (NYU), Alison Rand, Craig LaRosa and Lauren Wood (Frog Design)

The first phase of the project consisted of in-depth research of the NYS Courts unified system, its visitors, and its employees. We conducted extensive primary and secondary research, interviewing current and past employees, and reading publications about way-finding systems in similar environments, such as other courts, hospitals, airports and public spaces.


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We used tools such as the Collective Action Toolkit by Frog Design to guide us in synthesizing our research and to distill it into insights. We then presented our insights to our mentors at Frog as well as to our sponsor at Access to Justice. Their feedback helped us direct us towards what kind of solutions to develop.

INSIGHTS & Feedback

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We created user personas and came up with user journeys for each of them. This allowed us to start prototyping with a specific end-user in mind. We prototyped a possible physical sign, court maps, juror letter inserts, as well as an initial version of a sign-making styleguide. The styleguide was user tested and was later developed into one of our final products for the client.


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As a final product to hand to our project sponsor, we created a design audit report summarizing our research findings and insights, as well as our proposed solutions. We also created a styleguide that could be distributed to employees to direct them in creating better signage for the courts.