Making More UX Designers: UX Apprenticeship in the Real World
Help me solve the biggest problem in UX. Make more UX designers with your own apprenticeship program!
The demand for user experience designers has skyrocketed. Interest in UX as a career has soared along with that demand. Every UX designer gets asked how to get into the career, but the sad fact is that there’s no real answer to that question. Although demand is high, that demand is only for designers with 2-3 years of experience or more. There are simply not enough experienced designers to fill these positions, and this experience gap is a barrier to offering potential designers a consistent path from interest to employment.
I want you to help me change that.
Many have observed that design is a craft... How do you learn a craft? Education and practice. Apprenticeship is a model that fits that bill well, and during the summer of 2013 The Nerdery's UX team put it into practice. I want to share our program's successes and failures, our challenges and solutions, and some of the nitty-gritty details that made it go. The goal of this presentation is to make it easier for UX teams in other organizations to implement their own apprenticeship programs, which will ultimately make it easier for interested, talented, and passionate people to become UX designers.
One day, when people ask UX designers how to get into the field, I want us to be able to offer a simple answer: "Find an apprenticeship." Let's do this!
About Fred: Fred Beecher has been working in User Experience for 15 years. In that time he’s seen UX mature from a field struggling to prove its value to one driving an explosion of innovation and economic growth. To help feed the ever-increasing demand this explosion has sparked, Fred designed and implemented the UX apprenticeship program at The Nerdery in Minneapolis, MN.
Fred is an established contributor in the UX world. In 2007, he authored the first official Axure training program, which he ran until 2012. He has written numerous articles and blog posts on prototyping, iterative design, and UX career development, and he has spoken on these topics at design conferences worldwide.