Studying UXD – User Experience Design

The app is live, it does have an age limit of 4+ though.

Admittedly, at this point the app is design without any formal guidelines or any science of UX design. Everything in the app is based on how I imagined an app should look, and it was coded “as I feel like it”. Very little planning went into it prior to production.

With a course I’m taking right now, I am able to learn about foundations of UX design. First and foremost, UX design is way more than the user interface. It is only true that user interface is only part of the study of UX design. So what is included in UX design?

UX design is a 5-part process that can be summarized into:

  1. Strategy
    • The foundation of any user experience
    • Asks the question: what do users want and expect from the app?
    • Asks the question: how does the app fit with users’ other goals?
  2. Scope
    • Includes functional specifications – what does the app accomplish
    • Includes content requirements – what content is of value to users
  3. Structure
    • Includes interaction design – to create a structured experience of patterns and sequences that present appropriate options to users
    • Includes an information architecture – volume of content, along with how it it’s organized, arranged and prioritized
  4. Skeleton
    • Includes interface design – to determine how to best arrange and present visual elements for the user to interact with
    • Includes navigation design – to design onscreen elements allow users to move through tasks and information intuitively
  5. Surface
    • Includes the final visual design – to use colours, images, typography and effects to reinforce the meaning of the contents, guide the user through tasks and information and reduce cognitive load, enable recognition and increase intuitive learning

This course really gets you to think about how much thinking, planning and researching is done before you sit down at a computer and create a new project in Xcode. App creation for me was with the new project created and staring at the interface builder in Xcode.

Based on a more detailed study of these five areas of UX design, I will devise my very own design process and start talking to people about their app ideas.



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