Want to take a glimpse at the UX Design experience at BrainStation? Student Jessica Bianchi shares her journey and progression from day one.
The first aspect of the UX Design process we tackled was the Market Research phase, and by the end of the class we were asked to think about our final projects. The way the instructors presented the material made it very visual and easy to follow, with a supplemental email sent out afterwards.
We discussed how to define key performance indicators and the importance of keeping the user in mind throughout the product life cycle. We were asked to break up into smaller groups to discuss how each of these things applied to our final project idea.
In the third week, we talked about content strategy. I found this interesting as we touched on planning, developing and managing the content pertaining to our final projects and how it would help us achieve business goals.
Week four we discussed user journeys. Hira did a great job of helping me through my journey, mapping it out on a whiteboard. After this we learned about user navigation, which is the actions a user takes to make their way through a website or app.
Hira gave us a preliminary look at wire framing. We used a card sorting activity to create categories, which ended up as the structure of our homepage.
This week we talked about ways to find inspiration. We were then shown different tools that can be used to collect and organize our inspiring ideas. After that, we touched on how to conduct a heuristic evaluation of a competitor’s product using principles of usability.
This week we started off by looking at responsive design. We explored the difference between adaptive and responsive design and best practices. We then discussed design techniques and elements of visual design before trying our hand at sketching.
Before we got into the technical aspect, we learned about the importance of wireframing and its purpose. We were shown the variety of tools that can be used to create and share projects. Michael then introduced us to Balsamiq, the wireframing tool we would be getting acquainted with over class.
Hira went over 10 usability heuristics to consider when asked to critique a project – things like consistency and standards or aesthetic and minimalist design. We broke up into smaller groups and were able to take a closer look at each person’s project while applying what we had learned. Hira then introduced us to the purpose, types and benefits of usability testing.
This week, I missed my first class because I was sick. Luckily, the instructors send around reading materials and a class outline each week, but there’s something to be said about actually being present.
The majority of the class was spent working on our final projects. Before class ended, Michael gave us an opportunity to fire our burning questions about UX Design at him.