Journey maps, user pathways and interaction models

Tools to help you design for people’s journeys, experiences and interactions

Abram El-Sabagh
2 min readJun 9, 2020

Let’s talk about journey maps, user pathways and interaction models.

Journey maps, User pathways and Interactions (by Darren Menachemson)
Journey maps, User pathways and Interactions (by Darren Menachemson)

What they are

Journey maps visualise the journey of a person across different systems (think health, justice, social services, etc) People don’t experience systems, they experience their own journey through these systems.

A user pathway focuses on a person’s experience with a specific product or service — for example, someone’s experience with the Emergency Department in a hospital.

Interaction models refer to a touch point between a person and a system — in the heath system, an example might be a person’s interaction when they’re registering themselves in the Emergency Department.

How you can use them

When trying to understand a problem, you typically focus on exploring the journey map of a group of people in a system (I.e. Journey maps) This helps you generate ideas the solve the root problems.

When designing a product or service, you’re turn your attention to a user pathway to create the future experience.

To make a new product or service “real”, you start looking at the interaction points because that’s what people will experience in a tangible way — i.e. the registration form, or the phone number they’ll call or the app they’ll use.

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Abram El-Sabagh

Human-centred designer. ThinkPlace. Designing for positive outcomes.