User Experience (UX) Design is the process of enhancing user satisfaction by improving the usability, accessibility, and pleasure provided in the interaction between user and a product. Although the emphasis is on the digital aspect of user experience (websites, apps), UX also applies to services and products.
Hiring managers need UX designers. Because of a wide range of companies with a digital presence, there is a heavy demand for UX designers who can design the way a website flows, the placement of buttons on a mobile interface, the clarity and readability of the accompanying language - all of these things and more affect a user's experience of a brand and its products. A UX designer's job is to make sure that experience is as pleasant as possible.
This is a relatively new and fast growing field. Any type of four-year degree is helpful (Graphic Arts, Psychology, Business, Communication). Experience in Web or App development, a two-year degree would also be helpful. You will need to be interviewed by one of our program managers to help you decide what program best suits your needs, and objectives. Please call Gerald Ringer at 585-484-7095 for assistance to get started on your program assessment.
Intro to User Experience
An introductory course where students will learn what is UX, UX Psychology, and an introduction to user research (Qualitative, Quantitative, Ethnography, etc.)
An introductory course where students will learn how to manage user experience projects. Student objectives include writing business requirements, creating a project plan, understanding agile project management, and lean UX.
Personas, Journey Mapping, Information Architecture
Once students understand the introduction to user experience content, students will gain more in-depth knowledge regarding creating persons, journey mapping a customer through a digital product, and the information architecture of a digital product.
Visual Design Fundamentals & Tools
An introductory course on digital visual design and the tools used to design digital products. Students will learn the fundamentals of digital design including layout (grid), space, color, typography, and the tools used by designers to create visual designs (Sketch, Illustrator, Photoshop). Students will be exposed to Bootstrap (CSS Framework), as well as some advanced topics like mobile design, interaction design, and animation.
Patterns & Pattern Libraries
Students will build on what they learned in the Visual Design Fundamentals & Tools course to understand how design elements fit into design organisms and even larger design systems that represent a brand. The students will also learn about pattern libraries and how to build one.
Students will explore the eccentricities of designing for small screens and touch devices. Objectives include understanding user context/environment, utilizing the hardware available in mobile devices for a better user experience (gps, camera, etc.), and the user experience differences between a click paradigm on a desktop/laptop versus the touch interaction (touch, gesture) on a mobile device.
Students will learn how to present their design and prototype concepts to a group. This includes creating a presentation, speaking to a group, accepting criticism, iterating a design based on feedback, and defending design decisions.
Students will discover how to utilize wireframing to visualize a concept and the tools used to wireframe (Balsamiq, drawing, Axure). Students will also learn the difference between a wireframe versus a prototype, and how to utilize wireframes in user testing and presentations.
Objectives for this course include integrating visual design into a functional prototype, the differences in fidelity for prototypes (low, medium, high), and the tools used for prototyping (invision, axure, code) depending on fidelity required. Students will also understand how to use prototyping in user testing and iterate a prototype based on testing feedback.
Advanced Research/Testing & Iteration/Reporting
This course builds upon the knowledge gained from the introduction to user experience course which touches on research. Students will learn the tools and objectives for usability testing, the usability testing process, the types of usability testing, recruiting test subjects, qualitative research, quantitative research, iteration and retesting, and how to report on the results of usability tests.
Current Trends & Tools
Students will explore current trends and tools in user experience today. This includes popular design styles, popular user experience patterns, popular tools used in user experience practice, and examples of good versus bad user experiences in digital products.
Team organization and structure
This is a one meeting course that describes the makeup of a user experience team typically found in a corporation or agency. Students will discover the roles and responsibilities of each team member and the processes used to create great products.
Intro to Digital Marketing
This course is an overview of digital marketing in the context of user experience. User experience includes the entire customer journey from initial customer contact to customer engagement with the product and customer exit, thus marketing initiates the conversation with users and maintains user loyalty. With this in mind, students will get an overview of digital marketing techniques and tools and how user experience professionals can use digital marketing to create a top-notch user experience for a digital product.
Students will utilize the knowledge gained throughout the user experience curriculum to independently develop a project that incorporates the key elements of the user experience learnings. This project will be done throughout the duration of the curriculum, with several classes devoted to work sessions where students can interact with each other and the professor to better their project.
Students will utilize the knowledge gained throughout the user experience curriculum to work as a team to develop a project that incorporates the key elements of their user experience learnings. This project will be done throughout the duration of the curriculum, with several classes devoted to work sessions where students can interact with each other and the professor to better their project.
Students will understand the importance of a user experience professional portfolio. This includes what students should show in their portfolio, tools for creating a portfolio, and examples of good/bad portfolios. Students will then build their own portfolio from projects and homework completed throughout the course.