Learning UX design can be intimidating, considering the depth and breadth of the Topic. The plethora of content available on the internet doesn’t really make it any easier. There are some really great content and resources, and some really shitty ones, knowing how to use it and which one to use can be difficult for someone who is just starting.
So through this blog, I just want to share how I would start my journey knowing what I know now after 15 months of learning UX.
As I previously mentioned, there is a plethora of content and courses online regarding UX. Some of them go too deep for beginners, and some don’t even touch the surface (this is from my personal experience after completing about 12 Courses in the last year). But Google’s UX Design course, which lasts about 6 months, guides you through the basics/foundational knowledge and helps you understand and get a hands-on experience by working on conceptual projects. You can also apply for Financial Aid.
Courses are the best way to obtain a structured learning path, but this is just the beginning of the journey.
Some other courses I would recommend-https://www.interaction-design.org/
You might enroll yourself in a course and start your learning journey, but most of these courses don’t offer one-to-one mentorship. This is a major drawback since mentors guide you, help you find your flaws, and give you feedback to improve yourself. More importance of mentors-https://careerfoundry.com/en/blog/ux-design/ux-design-mentor/
This is where ADPList comes in a platform that allows you to connect and book a mentorship session with experienced designers for free. Find a mentor for yourself and try to get feedback as you learn and design. More on how to be a good Mentee- https://www.amtamassage.org/find-mentor/ten-tips-for-successful-mentor-mentee-relationship/
Teaching yourself anything can be difficult, especially if you don’t have someone who can hold you accountable or someone with whom you could share your small victories. You might end up being uninspired to complete the course. This is where Design communities come in, here you can share your thoughts, your difficulties, get feedback, and your small but important victories.
Here is an article from Havard Business Review on how learning together helps you learn more-https://hbr.org/2016/01/we-learn-more-when-we-learn-together
Design Community I would suggest — https://www.designbuddies.community/
You can always create your own just in case…
Most of the courses would cover more UX design and less Visual design, and maybe that is what you are looking for, but nowadays to get hired you have to be at least above-average when it comes to UI design. So it is better to practice it.
And to do that you can enroll in Daily UI challenges, the best daily challenge in my opinion is Adobe XD’s Daily creative challenge.
- You get a daily 30 minutes video explaining a challenge and senior designers take on it.
- Then you complete your version of the challenge.
- Get Feedback from Adobe Xd’s Discord Challenge and implement those feedback
- Post it on Behance and get an opportunity to be featured on Behance Page.
The advantage of this challenge is that you get feedback to improve yourself instead of repeating the same mistakes. Over a period of time, you will see a change in your design skills.
Teaching yourself can be draining, especially if you don’t see visible progress. This is the part where you create small milestones for yourself, with the ending being your final goal. This will provide you with a moment of pride after completing each milestone. This will keep you motivated and not lose hope in your journey. Proof for this-https://blog.nus.edu.sg/teachingconnections/2020/04/07/the-power-of-moments-creating-memorable-epic-lessons/
It can be something like this-
Level 1- Start my UX course.
Level 2- Get positive feedback.
Level 3- Participate in Design Challenge for a month
Goal- Get a job/Internship.
Learning stuff on your own can be difficult, but it can be easier if you use the right tools and resources that are available on the internet. This is not to say that you won’t have bad days, you might have days where you feel stuck or lost, don’t be afraid of them or get discouraged by them. Everybody goes through them ( I literally cried myself to sleep yesterday), Talk to your mentors and community members. They will help you get out of it. Also, I would like to add that doing the course will not make you a certified UX designer, you still have to work on various aspects of it, this is just the start.