User Experience education from Interaction Design Foundation
A review of the Danish NGO with a unique mission: making design education affordable globally.
In the 6 months that I’ve been a member of the Interaction Design Foundation, I’ve come across many people wondering exactly what membership to this organization entails. For anyone considering furthering their design education online, I’ll walk you through why I’ve personally found Interaction Design Foundation’s user experience courses to be really helpful.
Though any Tom, Dick or Harry can create a MOOC overnight and claim “industry recognition”, the Interaction Design Foundation’s street cred is validated through reviews from publications like Forbes (Meet The Danish NGO That’s Taking Open-Source Education Global)and core77 (An Open Courseware Series of Textbooks for Design)..
As a member you get access to:
- 32 free certified UX courses (accredited by LinkedIn)
- The opportunity to establish connections with other UX professionals, product managers and designers within their large community
- UX Daily: the world’s largest online UX Design resource
- Updates regarding the most important UX events across the world
- UX local groups spread across the world
Since cost is a major factor in determining ones choice of education, it’s useful to know at the very outset the Interaction Design Foundation’s philanthropic mission of making design education affordable worldwide.
They offer a vast quantity of free-for-all open access literature, reduce the yearly subscription free for students from developing countries, and at roughly $10 a month offer a value for money that’s frankly unheard of in the industry. All of this is neatly summarized in their article “How to Calculate the Return on Investment of a Design Education”.
The key thing to note here is that in an industry filled with “quick-fixes”, these courses are fighting the de-intellectualization of design.
That’s not to say you won’t learn practical skills, but the emphasis is on maintaining relevance in a world so fast-paced that softwares become obsolete in the time it takes to learn them. You learn timeless concepts based on fundamental principles, infinitely adaptable to different contexts.
The courses are a great mix of text, images, and video all reinforcing the different ideas and concepts being introduced.
I wholeheartedly recommend the user experience courses offered by the Interaction Design Foundation.
An attempt to describe what these guys are doing is best summed up in the words of industry giant Don Norman!