How can I increase my UX research skills?
November 20, 2023 11:14 AM   Subscribe

I manage a website for a government agency (it's not THE agency website, it's a focused product). I have some informal UX experience from prior jobs, but I'm at the point where I'd like some more formal training. What are my options? and as a result I do a bunch of user-centered design for the site: we do formative research, one-on-ones, have done some focus groups, plus some summative evaluations.

Usability, and user-centered design, is a focal point for us. In the past, my informal experience has been an asset, in government (gov workers - we often need to be a jack of all trades - having a breadth of skills rather than necessarily having great depth in everything we do). Usually, this work is either a) identifying problems via heuristics and b) conducting formative research with users (1:1s, focus groups, and more), with a little bit of c) summative evaluation thrown in.

But I'd like to grow - specifically, I'm thinking about how to analyze our product in terms of usability; how to apply different types of usability research in different contexts or situations; how to really properly put together sound usability tests and assessments.

What are my options, here? I'm interested in free or low-cost solutions (but if that's not likely, I'm curious for informed info about what other solutions are out there) - are there widely known online courses, youtube series, or resources that I can use to formalize my understanding of the field and really take a step forward?

posted by entropone to Technology (4 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
I have a cert from NNG and also use their free resources. They have so many resources available! I don't think the certification is "necessary" but it would be good to deep dive into their materials and then, if you do a course, you can get your questions answered.
posted by beyond_pink at 12:09 PM on November 20 [5 favorites]

I was going to suggest NNG as well. I also did a human-centred design micro-credential through OCAD continuing ed as a part of a UX/UI certificate up here in Toronto. At that time it was online and helpful both for the information and the networking. I wonder if there’s a continuing ed department in your neck of the woods that would have a similar program?
posted by warriorqueen at 12:25 PM on November 20 [1 favorite]

If you want to get really formal, Berkley has a human factors program
posted by TimHare at 12:58 PM on November 20

Nth-ing NNG if you want to continue doing this yourself. They’re very common-sense and aren’t overly married to one specific framework. I’ve been doing UXR specifically for ~10 years and have been impressed by their training. I don’t have a full credential because I’ve never seen the value in crossing those t’s.

Let me know if you have specific questions, I’d be happy to chat.
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 1:26 PM on November 20 [1 favorite]

« Older specific products for keeping hands warm while...   |   Inspiration and practical advice for building... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments