Have you ever asked yourself a question about why we enjoy using some products more than others? The answer might lie in user experience design, which is a field that unites real users with products and services. You may not even realize it, but some everyday objects like washing machines, coffee machines, apps, and websites are carefully designed in a way that they bring joy and pleasure whenever you interact with them.
Is user experience (UX) design only about the shape of a product? No, it definitely isn't. UX design is also about how a person's journey with the product feels and what emotions it evokes. That is why user experience research takes place whenever it comes to either a mobile app design or household appliance customization.
Below we are going to give you an overview of the design process that everyday objects, mobile apps, and websites go through so that you have a deeper understanding of what user experience design implies.
How is UX design different from UI design?
UI and UX design are close areas because they are both user-centred design areas but have specific aspects in focus.
UI stands for user interface, which means that UI design skills involve working with graphic design, visual design, and user interfaces. A UI designer develops an inclusive design that is user-friendly and intuitive, pleasant to look at, and can be adapted to use on various devices.
UX designers, on the other hand, are responsible for the overall experience apart from computer science. Working as a UX designer means being able to analyze human behaviour and link this knowledge to UI designs to make sure an end user will receive the best experience from using a product or service.
Part and parcel of user experience design
Now that you know the difference between UX and UI design let us take a closer look at what UX designers are responsible for on a regular basis.
If you are a user experience designer, you will be performing the following tasks when working on providing the best user experience for the chosen product:
Identify the problem and align its solution with the brand you are working with.
Carry out user research so that you know what a target user wants and expects.
Put all the knowledge you have got into perspective and create personas that will encompass all the information you own and will help you to start working on a user journey.
When you have finished with personas, you will start creating wireframes and prototypes to see what your future product will look like. At this point, you are most likely to team up with a user interface design team.
Run user testing to spot any problems that may arise while a customer is interacting with the product or service.
Analyze and evaluate the work you have done and present actionable insights to stakeholders.
So, if you feel that you could easily combine and make use of your creative and analytical skills, this profession can become your dream job!
Learning UX design skills online
If you have ever considered a career change and would like to do a creative job, UX design can be the right choice. Once you have set your mind to learning UX design, look at the list of required courses that one needs to complete before embarking on a UX journey.
There are some popular UX design courses that you can take online or offline, depending on your preferred way of learning. Online UX courses are great because you can study anywhere, regardless of your location, gain a UX solid foundation, deep dive into the UX design process, and take part in hands-on projects.
A UX design hands-on course will cover the following aspects:
Gaining an understanding of UX fundamentals and human-computer interaction
Building information architecture
Learning how to conduct UX research so that you know for sure that your target user needs
Getting familiar with UI elements and web design
Running usability testing and prototyping
Developing design thinking and learning the basics of interaction design
Acquiring project management skills
Trying your hand at using different tools like Adobe XD, Illustrator, or Photoshop to develop your digital design skills
In case you choose to learn UX online, you can complete the entire program at your own pace with no rush or commuting. You will build up a professional portfolio, and some courses also offer a UX career coach who will offer their assistance with the proper job search.
Career prospects after a UX design course
After you have finished your education, you will be ready to take on real-world projects and start growing as a professional UX designer.
You will be open to exploring a vast number of job opportunities not only as a UX design specialist but also in the following roles:
UX subject matter expert
User researcher and others
As you can see, career opportunities are not confined to just being a user experience designer. When you have learnt the basics of the job, you will be able to look at it from different angles and find the niche that would fit your professional goals and needs.
Frequently Asked Questions — FAQ
Can you learn UX online?
You will definitely benefit from taking a UX design online course. Complete understanding and the disciplines are taught by prominent professionals, such as professors from the California Institute of the Arts. After you complete an online course, you will not only have all the necessary knowledge in the field but also will build a UX portfolio that will help you find your first project faster.
Can UX design be self-taught?
With the development of online education, many people acquire tools and gain knowledge in a variety of fields on their own. There are UI/UX design courses that make it possible for you to learn the fundamentals of web development or get insight into user experience (UX); however, it is only suitable for those who are self-organized and disciplined enough.
How much does a UX design course cost?
The price of online courses varies depending on the platform or institution that provides them. You can even study for free (it is called auditing a course), but keep in mind that, in this case, you might not earn a certificate and, most likely, will not receive feedback on your homework and designs.
The price of online UX design courses will also depend on the duration and depth of the program. Do not forget to check if the program you have chosen offers a refund in case you couldn't get a job offer in some time.
Can I become a UX designer in 3 months?
You can learn the basics of the career, acquire some skills and even participate in a couple of projects in 3 months, which can become a springboard for your future journey as a user experience designer. However, it is important to keep in mind that it is quite hard to become a professional in such a short period of time. Every skill takes time to master, and this field is not an exception.