Probably no other area of design has more impact on how successful your initial design decisions are going to be than user research. Most of us aren’t designing for ourselves, and a good understanding of who our users are and what their needs are is vital for successful design. This course teaches you how to identify the best type of research for a project, how to execute your research so you get the most useful results given the time and resources you have available to you, how to execute your research and how to make sense of your research results.
No prior knowledge is required to do this course, it is suitable for absolute beginners. However the course is primarily aimed at:
Designers and developers who want to learn how to discover the needs of the people you are designing for.
Senior practitioners who want to gain an understanding of the basic principles of user research and put some flesh around their current practice.
Product owners and project managers who want a better understanding of what their researchers need, how to use research to increase the quality of their decisions or who want to build the capabilities of themselves and their teams.
You will learn how to analyse a project to identify if that project needs formative user research in order to achieve its goals.
You will learn the different types of user research available to you and how to identify which one is the most likely to get you valid results given the time and resources available to you.
You will get to work in a team to design and execute a research project.
You will learn about common analysis techniques to make sense of the data you have collected and you will get to use one of those techniques on your own data.
You will learn how to present you research in a way that is meaningful and compelling.
There are no prerequisites for this course, no previous experience with design or research is required.
All materials are provided.
Learning how to organise, describe and present the information in your website or app is one of the fundamental skills that makes up UX design. Information architecture is the glue that holds complex digital products together and enables users to navigate and make sense of them.
This introductory course teaches you the basics of designing solid information architecture (IA) for websites, intranets, search and web applications. You will learn what and how to research to identify the elements of an effective IA. We'll cover how to analyse and synthesise your research results. Most importantly you'll learn the basics of designing IA and how to create sitemaps, wireframes and other artefacts to communicate that design.
Anyone who deals with online or digital products and needs to understand the basic principles and application of best practice IA design.
Web, interaction and UX designers who want a better understanding of how to break down their design elements into information chunks and patterns, and to communicate better with their developers, stakeholders and business analysts.
Business analysts and product owners who work with designers or have had to take on the role of information architect in a project or product environment. This course will help you understand the fundamental components of what makes up the information design of a website.
Where we identify information architecture concepts in modern web design and why it’s a necessary part of software development.
Where we look into the different components of information architecture and how to identify them. These form the basic terms and concepts you need to consider when designing IA.
Where we look into the process of how modern information architecture is created, covering common tasks and activities used to create an IA that will work for your users and business.
Where we look at how to communicate basic IA design concepts in order to create cohesive specifications that third parties are able to communicate, implement and test such as wireframes, content models, sitemaps and task flow diagrams.
This course will give you practical understanding of:
There are no prerequisites for this course, no experience with design, coding or development is required.
Bring a laptop or tablet if you have one, but you can do the course without it. All you really need to bring is a UX mindset.
This practical course focuses on design for screens, from application user interfaces to web design. This course could be taken as a complement to one of our user centered design courses or as a stand alone course for designers, developers and product managers who want to learn more about making design decisions for screens.
NOTE: This is a design course, not a coding course although it does include a summary of the most common technologies used to implement web and UI design.
This course is suitable for:
If you are unsure if this course is right for you please contact us, we are happy to talk over the course with you in more detail.
No previous UX, UI, or design experience is necessary.
You will need a laptop with your graphic design or layout programme of choice although if you don’t have access to a laptop or to graphic design software let us know and we can arrange to provide some for you.
We will provide all other materials.
Although our ‘UX Crash Course’ and ‘Intro to UX’ course do include a section of designing for screens their primary focus is on teaching an evidence based user centered design process. They teach a process that includes research, design and testing.
Just as our ‘User Research’ and ‘User Testing and Prototyping’ courses go deeper into the research and testing aspects of this process, the ‘User Interface Design: Designing for screens’ course is focused primarily on the design phase and goes deeper into the mechanics of making detailed user interface decisions.
User testing designs through prototyping helps us to safely explore risky ideas, get a feel for how real people will respond to our designs and most importantly lets us fail cheaply and privately instead of publicly and expensively. But how many users do we need? How do we identify what to test? How do we know the way we designed and ran the test is producing valid results? How do we recruit people? How do we integrate user testing into a project without adding unsustainable expense and time to a project?
This 6 hour course teaches current best practice for user testing digital products and services. It gives you hands on experience of designing and running effective user testing sessions suitable for both new designs and existing products and services.
You get practical experience in:
This course is suitable for anyone looking for an evidence based approach to validating their existing digital products or new design ideas. It is particularly suitable for:
This course combines all our one day courses into a week long deep-dive into experience design. It takes you through a full digital UX project from initial research to finished design. The week is designed to give you an understanding of the principles behind a modern user centered design process and practical experience of some of the most common activities you will encounter in a typical user experience project. With this course you can apply what you learn immediately to your current projects, use what you learn as a base for further study, or develop a case study to showcase for potential employers. No previous design or digital experience is required.
The UX Intensive week is an experiential course. You learn by doing, developing a project throughout the week taking it through a full UX design process from initial research through to usability testing. To ensure you can use what you learn during the week in your regular design practice every day of the course you are given:
You get common UX methods that make up a typical UX design process. These are practical ways of working that you can take away and start applying immediately.
You get the foundation theory behind these methods - why we work the way we do. This is to give you a basis for further study or self development. Principles help you judge how appropriate any method is for a given problem and give you enough understanding to alter a method or develop you own methods as needed.
We work every day from 9:30am to 4:30pm.
Sept 4 - Sept 8 2017
Thinkspace - 3 Glenside Crescent, Auckland
Sept 18 - Sept 22 2017
115 Tory Street, Te Aro Wellington
We encourage you to create a blog to document how you have applied a UX process and developed your project each day during the course. Although not compulsory, this helps to reinforce your learnings and can then be used to create a case study for future employers. We can set you up with a blog service if you need us to.
We will have two drop ins during the week from leading UX parishioners who will share a case study, discuss the reality of doing UX design in the real world, and answer your questions.
No prior knowledge is required to do this course, it is suitable for absolute beginners. However the course is primarily aimed at:
Web, interaction and UX designers who want to build on their UX skills, put into practice approaches they have read about, adopt a user centered design approach or better their understanding of the principles behind common UX design methods.
Traditional designers who want to transition into digital design or learn how to work better with their UX colleagues.
People new to the industry looking for the opportunity to learn and practice user experience design and use that experience to gain a foothold into the industry.
Senior practitioners who want to gain an understanding of the principles of user experience design and experience how those principles are practiced on the ground.
Developers who want to build on their UX skills or learn how to work better with their UX colleagues.
Product owners and project managers who want a better understanding of how a user experience design approach can get them better outcomes on their products and projects.
We start at the start - learning about the people we are designing for. Most of us aren’t designing for ourselves. No other area of design has more impact on how successful your initial design decisions are going to be than user research. On the first day you will learn some fundamental research methods, and the principles behind them. You will conduct some first hand user research then use common design thinking methods to create a design concept for the week based on the research findings.
You will learn how to analyse a project to identify if formative user research is needed in order to achieve project goals.
You will learn the different types of user research available and how to identify which one is the most likely to get you valid results given the time and resources available to you.
You will work in a team to design and execute a research project.
You will learn about common analysis techniques to make sense of the data you have collected and you will get to use one of those techniques with your own data.
You will learn how to present your research in a way that is meaningful and compelling.
On the second day we dive into information architecture (IA), one of the fundamental skills that makes up UX design.
We will go through the basics of designing solid information architecture, taking a user centered approach to identifying the language, taxonomy, navigation and categorisation that enables users to effectively use your product or service.
We then put what we’ve learnt into practice by developing the information architecture that will support the design concept you created on day 1.
We look into the different components of information architecture and how to identify them. These form the basic terms and concepts you need to consider when designing IA.
We look into the process of how modern information architecture is created, covering common tasks and activities used to create an IA that will work for your users and business. You will put these into practice on your own project.
We cover how to communicate basic IA design concepts in order to create cohesive specifications that third parties are able to communicate, implement and test such as wireframes, content models, sitemaps and task flow diagrams.
On day 3 we cover designing for human behaviour. We look at how our design choices influence the decisions people make and how we can use language, layout, colour, images and type to communicate clearly and persuasively. You will learn the basics of interaction design and how to help users make sense of complex systems and make good decisions.
On this day you start to flesh out your high level design and begin to take your first steps to creating a rough clickable prototype.
We’ll cover user behaviour and decision making for screen based designs and interfaces and how to design interactions to accommodate common user strategies.
How to use layout, type, colour and images to communicate and persuade.
This includes best practice for selecting user interface (UI) controls and solving common UI design problems.
We’ll introduce the foundations of designing to positively influence people’s behaviour.
We cover how you can make sure your design is accessible to users with different physical and mental abilities.
We’ll cover emerging design trends such as collaborative design methods and non visual interfaces including bots, conversational interfaces and AI.
On day 4 we extend our design exploration to the ins and outs of designing for systems and screens. We look at the implications of different devices and screen types, how your design will be implemented and how technical realities effect user experience.
On this day you will tighten up and add more detail to your design and refine your clickable prototype.
We look at making layout and design decisions for responsive layouts, various screen sizes and touch devices.
We cover what designers need to know about how design is implemented organisationally, on the web and in native apps.
We look at the pros and cons of using a standardised UI library.
We cover the most popular design software used by both broad UX designers and UX designs with a UI focus.
We look at the various methods used to document and communicate design decisions such as service design blueprints, Wikis, style guides and wireframes.
On day 5 we cover using prototypes to test emerging designs and best practice for validating existing designs. User testing designs through prototyping helps us to safely explore risky ideas, get a feel for how real people will respond to our designs and most importantly lets us fail cheaply and privately instead of publicly and expensively.
This is our last day. You finish your design and complete your prototype. We then test your design using observational time on task testing and iterate the design based on what we’ve learnt.
We look at how to identify what needs testing and how to design a test that will get you valid results.
We cover how many users you need, how to recruit them and how to prepare for and facilitate an effective usability test.
We look at the pros and cons of heuristic reviews (expert review) and how to conduct one.
We cover the most popular prototyping tools in use at the moment.
We look at how to interpret what you see during a test and how to communicate that to your clients or stakeholders.