Colorful sticky notes with numbers and a lighter note with building blocks
Colorful sticky notes with numbers and a lighter note with building blocks
Words: Emma Shimmens / Illustration: Gina Medranda

UX Academy Foundations is our newest course offering at Designlab and, as someone who has no technical UI/UX design experience, I put myself forward to participate in one of the early beta cohorts to see what it was all about!

While I’ve worked in the UI/UX design education space for almost 4 years, I’d never personally learned the design tools or physically designed any webpages or app screens prior to taking UX Academy Foundations. I was therefore keen to immerse myself in all the lesson material and, more importantly, all the practical work involved.

To help you learn a little…

Six important reminders

Dark blue background with person sleeping in front of a laptop

When I graduated from UX Academy in early 2017, I was a bright-eyed young designer looking for work in the tech industry. After a few months of interviewing for jobs, I discovered a trend: none of these tech companies were comfortable with remote work options. The expectation of the UX Designer seemed to be someone who sits right next to stakeholders and developers for close collaboration.

At first, I was dismayed at that discovery; by that time I had already been working remotely for 2 years. Remote working wasn’t just a temporary deviation from the “norm” for me, but rather…

Bright yellow box with a Rubik’s Cube

The role of UX designer has evolved considerably over the past decade. The typical UX design job description today is quite different from how it looked in 2009, when, believe it or not, the first iPhone had only just been released.

On top of that, different companies have very different specific responsibilities and requirements for people they hire under the title of “UX designer.” So what are the core skills that someone is likely to need in any UX design job?

In this piece we’ll run through skills you should build if you want to transition to a career in…

Words: Alexa Harrison / Illustration: Gina Medranda

The best way to improve the effectiveness of your designs is to always be seeking quality design feedback. I say quality design feedback, specifically, because not all feedback is created equal.

Receiving quality feedback is very important for all designers, including graphic designers, web designers, product designers, and UX/UI designers, as well as other types of creative professionals. High quality feedback provides designers with an alternative point of view, which will ultimately help them improve both their current and future design projects.

Decent feedback is an especially important currency for designers. On an ideal team, there is ongoing collaboration between…

Words: Nicole Locklair / Illustration: Sam Friedman

If someone asks you to name a tech company, what immediately comes to mind? For many people, it’s Apple, Google, Facebook, or one of a few other global entities that are pioneers of technology and have shaped so much of our world.

But the truth is, you don’t have to work at one of these giant tech companies to have a job in tech. Previously “tech jobs” were roles like Engineers and Developers — but now there is an entire industry of tech professionals who’ve never actually touched a line of code, one of them being UX designers.

If you’re…

Words: Alexa Harrison / Illustration: Gina Medranda

The creative process looks different for everyone.

Personally, my creative process involves a lot of procrastination, and looks something like this:

Words: Alexa Harrison / Illustration: Gina Meandra

I’m going to be honest. I put off writing this because I didn’t feel qualified. Even as I write this now, I’m overcome with feelings of imposter syndrome.

The truth is, I do feel like an imposter much of the time. Friends often have to remind me of my previous successes to reassure me that I am, in fact good enough, and that I do belong, even when I’m really uncomfortable in my skin.

Throughout my entire childhood, I had this recurring dream where I’d wake up in a math class that was for students two or three grades above…

Words: Mandy Kerr / Illustration: Annie Devine

Finding the right person for every role we advertise is one of the most important contributions I can make as a hiring manager. A company’s success hinges on the skills and abilities of a team, in combination with the way team members interact with one another.

Here at Designlab, we look for people with the potential to add immediate value, but who will also learn and grow quickly. Each team member needs to add constructively to our team culture and strongly represent our company values.

Recently we advertised a role in our internal team and within five days had over…

Words: Emma Shimmens / Illustration: Gina Medranda

Listening is so much more than what you do with your ears. It’s also about your eye contact, the mental (or physical) notes you take, and your body language. A great thing to note is that when you improve your listening skills, you will enhance relationships not only on a professional level, but also with friends and family :) Here we’ve put together a list of eight key ways to improve your ability to be an effective listener. As you read through each step, reflect back on recent conversations you’ve had and think about how well you did (or didn’t!)…

Words: Andrew Wilshere / Illustration: Designlah

A portfolio site is a place to display your work online. So far, pretty straightforward. But if you’ve ever tried updating your design portfolio, you know that the decisions involved can quickly get overwhelming. What’s more, the stakes are high — get those decisions right, and they can land you a job. Get them wrong, and you might be passed by.

Based on our experience of guiding students through the UX portfolio process at Designlab, in this post we’re sharing some common mistakes found in junior design portfolios. …


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