Thursday, December 18, 2008

Self-Education in UX and Working with User Research Data

UX can be self-learned ...

"Q: What are some good ways to educate myself in UX?—from a UXmatters reader

The following experts have contributed answers to this question:

* Pabini Gabriel-Petit—VP, User Experience, at scanR, Inc.; Publisher and Editor in Chief, UXmatters; Principal User Experience Architect at Spirit Softworks; Emeritus Member of Board of Directors, Interaction Design Association (IxDA)
* Michael Hawley—VP Experience Design at Mad*Pow Media Solutions; UXmatters columnist
* Dirk Knemeyer—Founding Principal at Involution Studios; Board of Directors of the International Institute for Information Design (IIID); Board of Directors of the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) Center for Brand Experience; Executive Council of UXnet; UXmatters columnist
* David Heller Malouf—Senior Interaction Designer at Motorola; Professor of Interaction Design at Savannah College of Art & Design—effective January 1, 2009; Founder and former Vice President, IxDA
* Peter Merholz—Founding Partner, Board Member, and President of Adaptive Path
* Daniel Szuc—Principal Usability Consultant at Apogee Usability Asia; Founding member and President of the UPA China Hong Kong Branch

Learn from Your Peers

Dirk says, “One of the biggest benefits to being part of the UX community is how open and progressive most of the best people are. You only need the desire to learn more and the willingness to spend the time to absorb an incredible amount of education.”

“When you’re new to UX, make every effort to plug into the UX community—at work, through UX organizations, and socially,” Pabini suggests. “Many large companies have brown-bag lunches where coworkers present case studies or user research and guest speakers present talks they’ve given at conferences. If your company doesn’t have brown-bag lunches, organize some! Professional organizations and conferences provide opportunities to hear the best and brightest in our industry speak on diverse topics, and the socializing that occurs at these events gives you a chance to ask the speakers questions and discuss the presentations with your peers. Volunteer with UX organizations and publications, and you’ll have the opportunity to work on projects with experienced UX professionals and get valuable experience. In many communities, UX professionals get together at face-to-face socials where you can discuss UX issues and meet prominent people in your profession. If there aren’t any such get-togethers in your community, organize one."    (Continued via UXmatters,, Janet M. Six)    [Usability Resources]

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