The present trend of rapid development has drawn many candidates for the UI/UX designer position, including both design majors and STEM students. What abilities must students acquire during their education in order to be competent as UI/UX designers? What majors ought you to pick? Is a certain degree required to work in the field?
What is UI/UX?
- UI is the abbreviation of User Interface.
UI design (or interface design) refers to the overall design of software human-computer interaction, operation logic, and beautiful interface. UI design is divided into physical UI and virtual UI.
- UX is the abbreviation of User Experience.
Its core study is the user. Experience refers to the subjective feelings of users in accordance to the way they use and interact with the product. The aim is to achieve user satisfaction, resulting in continued use of the product.
What qualifications do I need to take on a UI/UX role?
There aren’t many degree programs that are specifically focused on user experience because UI/UX is a relatively new subject. Degree programs in human-computer interface, interaction design, and information architecture share the most knowledge and ideas with user experience.
Fortunately, there are several popular majors that can help you become ready for a job as a UI/UX designer. You might already hold a degree in one of these areas, but if not, the following majors are worthwhile to take into account.
Subjects to consider:
- Computer science
- Industrial design
If you decide to seek a degree for this role, remember to balance your coursework between a study of people (psychology, anthropology, or sociology) and technology (graphic design, programming language, or computer science).
What are the latest design tools?
Technical proficiency is crucial for UI/UX designers. In addition to conducting research, you will need to work on information architecture, wireframes, and prototypes. Research, which may involve the use of interviews, questionnaires, and observation, directs you to make the best decisions possible during the design phase. Information architecture can be used to prioritize and organize large and complicated sets of information. Wireframing allows you to swiftly examine design possibilities. You can design the fundamental framework for a website or app using wireframes.
Prior to the product’s release, prototyping makes sure there has been enough functional testing and identifies any problems. Although they are not required for UX designers, having a basic understanding of graphic design and coding could help you understand how your design fits into the bigger product development process.
You don’t need to be conversant with every design tool available on the market. Here are a few of the newest tools that UI/UX designers currently employ in their work. All you have to do is pick the one you like best and stay up to date on new features and trends.
- Interface Design: Sketch
- For collaborative interface design: Figma
- For wireframing: Axure
- For interface design and prototyping: Adobe XD
- Interactive dynamic prototypes: Principle, Flinto
- For prototyping and collaboration: Invision App
Most common UI/UX designer roles
UX Designer/Interaction Designer
UX designers prioritize the user’s interaction with the product while also ensuring that the logic of the product functions as intended. UX designers delve deeply into the situation and consider a wide range of options, and this in-depth analysis frequently results in novel solutions. UX designers typically employ a cross-disciplinary skill set of user research and design techniques. To comprehend user behavior and identify issues with product experience, UX designers use on-site observation, usability testing, user interviews, and other user research techniques.
In order to create a “good” user experience, UX designers investigate design ideas using techniques including brainstorming, role-playing, and storyboards. It is an interdisciplinary study that combines design, psychology, and computer engineering.
How a typical day looks like
A typical day might involve conducting stakeholder and user interviews, analyzing user needs, and fine-tuning user task flows. It might also involve thoroughly evaluating various products, identifying interaction design patterns, creating interaction patterns, writing interaction design drafts, and creating interaction design specifications/UIspec.
- Example of design outputs: flowcharts, site maps, storyboards, interaction design prototypes (wireframes), UI requirements, and interaction design specifications
- Example of tools used: Adobe Photoshop, Fireworks, PPT, Keynote, Sketch, Illustrator, OmniGraffle, Axure, and Visio
UI Designer / GUI Designer
The user interface between people and machines is referred to as UI. It can be viewed as a subset of UX. UI designers focus more on how the product is displayed on an interface than UX designers, who must consider how well the product is received by users as a whole. The distinction between UI and UX designers is actually fairly hazy in the online world. In small-medium enterprises, these two design positions are frequently integrated into one.
The term “UI” often refers to the graphical user interface (GUI: Graphic User Interface) shown on the screen. The term “UI designers” is actually a slang term for “GUI designers,” or graphic interface visual designers, who are in charge of deciding what kind of visual experience to create and are also in charge of the graphics, icons, colors, and visual styles of products or websites. Make sure the UI draft effectively communicates the interaction design draft of the UX designer by controlling the product interface design at the visual level.
For instance, UI designers may choose to utilize sliders or control knobs when creating an interface for data analysis in order to demonstrate the straightforward nature of the chart. To maintain consistency in product design, UI designers are also in charge of creating visual design guidelines; in these specifications, the usage behaviours of particular UI controls and components, such as error or warning prompts, is described.
How a typical day looks like
A typical day might involve being familiar with multiple terminal products with various resolutions, such as desktop, web, and mobile devices; being able to finish high-quality visual design drafts – from conceptual design to determine design style to detailed design; designing content, including icons, graphical interfaces, etc.; implementing a unified design language; writing and improving the design specifications of the website; and infusing the product with beauty and life.
- Example of design outputs: visual design specification document, visual design draft, visual design annotation specification, and visual cutout
- Example of tools used: Sketch, Illustrator, Fireworks, Photoshop, and Markman