In September 2020, I joined my kids by going back to school — online. The Nielsen Norman Group (NN/g), a world leader in user experience (UX) research and consulting, began to offer their certification training courses online. As I have been following NN/g’s innovative work since grad school, I jumped at the opportunity to learn from the pioneers in user-centered interface design, usability testing, iterative development, and related topics. A highlight was an intensive, real-time class with Bruce Tognazzini, Apple’s first Human-Computer Interaction Designer, whose seminal book, Tog on Software Design, was my among my early go-to references.
The coursework reinforced and updated my research-based design practice and introduced some exciting new ideas. As a result of the program, I’m proud to announce that I am now NN/g UX Certified, with a specialty in interface design. This means that I’m better equipped to create websites, apps, and other materials that are user-friendly, which drives customer satisfaction, employee productivity, and product/service sales. These user-focused materials and experiences, especially when designed in an iterative process, also save clients’ time and money that would previously have been spent on tech support and costly redesigns, among other after-the-fact remediation attempts.
Ultimately, the NN/g program was a fulfilling and energizing experience, and I’m excited to continue to put research into practice on current and future design projects.