Curricular Research – UX + UI Courses

There’s no denying it, UX design is a fad. Lured by high pay, the promise of trendy tech workplaces, and high work satisfaction is bringing in people from all backgrounds (from chemistry, to psychology, to architecture), it seems like everyone want to be a UX designer (myself included).

As a result, there seems to be no shortage of courses attempting to teach all those who are a willing, including: General Assembly, SuperHi, Skillshare, Udemy, Coursea, just to name a few.

Determining what to learning can then be a bit of a task, each course has its own approach, timeline, and learning outcomes. Some are more in-depth and require requisite learning, others are open to the average Joe with no past design experience.

Below I’ve broken down some of course curriculums/syllabi/outlines that we’re accessible to me, attempting to ascertain Key Learnings, Recommended Readings, Projects, and of course Course Outcomes (should be a job, right?).

Here are my notes:

General Assembly – User Experience Design Course


Course learning outcomes:
The Final Project:- For the User Experience Design final project, you will execute the UX design process from end to end, addressing a real-world problem by designing a new product or redesigning an existing one.
The final project culminates in a presentation that showcases:
  1. Effective user research and personas.
  2. Thoughtful task analysis, user flows, and navigation.
  3. A full set of wireframes with clear annotation and attention to detail.
  4. A portfolio-ready design and project demo.
Key learnings: 
Introduction to UX Design, User Research, Insights and Personas, Sketching, Feature Prioritisation, Maps and Flow, Wire-framing, Wireframes to Prototypes, Usability Testing, Project Demo and Critique, Visual Design, Design Systems and Patterns, Levelling Up Testing and Usability, Design for Behaviour and Emotion, Your Personal Brand as a Designer, Your Portfolio and Career, Flexible Sessions, Final Presentation.
Lookup: Practice using the 2×2 matrix and the MoSCoW method to prioritize features.

RMIT UX + UI Course 




Course Learning outcomes:
  1. How to construct user personas
  2. How to perform users research and user interviews
  3. The concept ideation and user testing process
  4. How to construct wireframe prototypes
  5. User flows and design requirements
  6. Atomic design and information hierarchy
  7. Design guidelines and accessibility
  8. Design tools such as Figma

Key Learnings: UX Design 

Objective: Develop a deep understanding of users and their needs, leveraging UX best practices to improve the quality of interactions with a product and deliver maximum value.
What you’ll learn: You’ll get an end-to-end understanding of UX design including customer personas, journey mapping, research, prototyping, and concept ideation
Modules: UX Design, Brief and problem definition, Research and Insights, Concept design, Concept refinement, Final presentation
Key Learnings: UI Design 
Objective: Learn how aspects of colour, typography and atomic design can make websites and apps user friendly and delightful to use.
What you’ll learn: You’ll get hands on and gain practical experience with UI design and explore colour, typography, spacing, heuristics, and Gestalt principles.
Modules: Introduction to UI design, Design material, Setting up your workplace, Atomic design, User testing, The future of UI design

SuperHi – Introduction to UX design



Course Learning Outcomes:
We’ll cover all the bases of an iterative UX design process including user research, wire-framing, prototyping, UI design and user testing.
Learn how to think like a UX designer and confidently work on projects for yourself and clients.
What you’ll learn:
  1. What user experience is, why it’s important and what goes into an iterative design process
  2. How to balance both business goals and user needs to create a successful digital project
  3. Popular research methods and how to turn insights into personas, user journeys, site maps and user flows
  4. How to create wireframes and prototypes to handoff to clients and stakeholders
  5. How to conduct user testing with real people, get feedback and make informed design decisions
  6. What makes a case study and UX portfolio successful, and how to make your own case studie


UNSW Interaction Design: Human-Centred Design Methods Course (SDES9312)

Course Description
This course provides an introduction to user-research, concept development and visual communication methods used in the development and evaluation of interactive products and services, along with an introduction to techniques for prototyping interactive products and experiences. You will research a real world situation, develop insights into users, the activities they are engaging in, and the context-of-use, to identify themes, issues and opportunities for interactive designs. The course culminates in the presentationof an original design proposal and prototype interactive design, developed using the insights developed from your user-research, and realised using physical and digital prototyping techniques that will be introduced as part of this studio.
Course Learning Outcomes: 
On completion of this course, the student should be able to:
  1. Apply human-centred research methods to identify design-requirements for a mobile app or website.
  2. Employ ideation, sketching and prototyping processes to produce and evaluate interactive designs.
  3. Present design-concepts using a combination of written, verbal and visual communication methods
Lowgren 2012, Interaction Design – brief intro encyclopedia-of-human-computer-interaction-2nd-ed/interaction-design-brief-intro
Holtzblatt et al. 2004, Rapid Contextual Design

Carnegie Mellon University’s Master of Human-Computer Interaction Degree
From TopUX school. Degree Program Handbook –

This course provides an overview and introduction to the field of human-computer interaction. It introduces students to tools, techniques and sources of information about HCI and provides a systematic approach to design. The course increases awareness of good and bad design through observation of existing technology, and teaches the basic skills of task analysis, and analytic and empirical evaluation methods. Graduate students will also participate in a laboratory where they will practice HCI techniques in an independent, self-defined project.
Required Readings: 
Required Text: Beyer, H. & Holtzblatt, K. (1998). Contextual Design: Defining Customer-­‐Centered Systems. Morgan Kaufmann: San Francisco, CA. ISBN 1-­‐55860-­‐411-­‐1
Recommend Required:

Holtzblatt, K., Wendell, J. B., & Wood, S. (2005). Rapid Contextual Design: A How-­‐To-­‐Guide to Key Techniques for User-­‐Centered Design.Elsevier, Inc.: San Francisco, CA. ISBN 0-­‐12-­‐354051-­‐

Dumas, J. S., & Redish, J. C. (1999). A practical guide to usability testing. Intellect Ltd: Portland, OR.ISBN 1-­‐84150-­‐020-­‐8
2016 version of course

Required Text: LUMA Institute, Innovating for People, hereafter abbreviated IP.
Optional Text: Holtzblatt & Beyer, Contextual Design Evolved.
Optional Text: Goodman, E., Kuniavsky, M., & Moed, A. (2012). Observing the User Experience.
Optional TextThe UX Book: Process and Guidelines for Ensuring a Quality User Experience by Rex HartsonandPardha Pyla (2012).
Optional Text: Holtzblatt, K., Wendell, J. B., & Wood, S. (2005). Rapid Contextual Design: A How-To-Guide to Key Techniques for User-Centered Design. Elsevier, Inc.: San Francisco, CA. ISBN 0-12-354051-8. Hereafter abbreviated to RCD. It is available here to UCRE students.

This studio course introduces students to design thinking and the basic practices of interaction design. It follows a human-centered design process that includes research, concept generation, prototyping, and refinement. Students must work effectively as individuals and in small teams to design mobile information systems and other interactive experiences. Assignments approach design on three levels: specific user interactions, contexts of use, and larger systems. Students will become familiar with design methodologies such as sketching, storyboarding, wire framing, prototyping, etc. No coding is required. This course serves as a prerequisite for Interaction Design Studio 2 (05-650).
This course follows Interaction Design Studio 1 (05-651). Students are expected to apply what they have learned about design thinking and methodologies as a starting point for all assignments. Students will work in teams to perform guerrilla research, synthesize data, and consider the needs of multiple stakeholders in their design of mobile services and other intelligent systems. Design concepts go beyond user inter faces to include sensors, controls, and ubiquitous computing. Emphasis is placed on the quality of the students’ ideas and their ability to give form to their design concepts. By completing and presenting their work, students will gain skills related to professional UX design practice.
Tomitsch, M., Wrigley, C., Borthwick, M., Ahmadpour, N., Frawley, J., Kocaballi, B., … and Loke, L. (2018).
Design. Think. Make. Break. Repeat. A handbook of methods. BIS Publishers.