Review of the Interaction Design Foundation

Reviewing my learning experience with IxDF design courses

Becker CPA, Bringing AI to eLearning
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Two forces drive my life – Knowledge & Design – and the UX courses of Interaction Design Foundation are my perfect bridge to link both.

I'm led by the idea that everything we design in this world will in turn design us back. In adition, technology is playing a significant role in shaping the future of design. On top of that, we are moving fast into a digital era where Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Deep Learning (DL), Big Data (BD), the Internet of Things (IoT), Blockchain, Spatial Computing, and several other technologies are becoming part of the designers' lexicon. Our roles are evolving, and the touchpoints we need to consider are growing in complexity.

Aware of these current challenges under the user experience field I couldn't take this journey alone. I needed support on my knowledge quest of integrating AI developments with User-centered Design (UCD) and User Experience Design (UX). After researching other platforms, I considered the course's portfolio and their respective qualities, and Interaction Design Foundation was the best choice. Not only has friendly remote courses, but the price was also very friendly.

The Brain and Technology: Brain Science in Interface Design
Interaction Design Foundation course interface
For the past few years, my career has been focused on how to design effective digital experiences between humans and AI. My goal is to connect design and development, to lead the production and delivery of AI-driven services to be more Human-centered AI oriented. But AI success is ground on user engagement. Which in its turn relies on seamless cognitive augmentation that meets users' goals. AI is enabling new ways of using and interacting with technology, which made me question how affordances might evolve under AI-driven services.

Motivated by this, I took my first course on Interaction Design Foundation – Affordances: Designing Intuitive User Interfaces. This course made me reconsider which factors are important to people's interaction with intelligent and automated systems. It has helped me to consolidate my knowledge around the cognition and mental models for UI and non-UI systems. I was able to realize that affordances are the main mechanism to trigger feedback loop back onto us. They can enhance the functional complexity of various motor, attentional, and regulative capacities responsible for generating and sustaining emotional experience.

To further comprehended how feedback loops are relevant in this interaction cycle, I also took the course The Brain and Technology: Brain Science in Interface Design. Here, I gained a deeper understanding of how feedback loops can help us understand system behaviors and how important is to design correct affordances to pass the right clues for effective feedback loops.
These two courses were so relevant to my knowledge that opened my interest in several other UX design courses.

AI can be a catalyst for a great user experience. As a result, the new conventions in the experience economy with new technological developments like AI are shaping how businesses invest in integrating user-centered design and user experience as a crucial part of their whole service design strategy plan. Aware of this interdependence, I jumped to the course UX Management: Strategy and Tactics.
UX Management: Strategy and Tactics
This course helped me to further understand the UX maturity of my organization, at the time. Also made me realize that design is the last great competitive advantage and should not be understood or strategically plan as something a person alone can achieve for an entire organization (I was a design team of one). This company, were (and still is) business-oriented instead of user-centered, and because of that, user experience design was living on a secondary plan as an enhancement and not as a strategic advantage.

This course makes me realize that was time to move forward and search for a more UX mature organization. And fortunately, I have moved and couldn't ask for a better company right now.

This UX management course was so good that makes me wish for a complimentary course more towards UX leadership. Where we could scale topics like UX maturity, UX strategy and management, and UX teams towards how to translate UX vision into UX roadmap, how leadership differs from management, how to translate UX to business values, as well as exploring topics related to mapping and measuring UX improvements.

Interaction Design Foundation is being part of my learning growth path. And will continue to be part of my learning strategy, either by its design courses, webinars, or masterclass, they will keep being my platform of choice to guiding me to develop my T-shape.
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