User experience design has become a crucial element in the development of digital products. As the demand for UX designers continues to grow, more and more universities around the world are offering degree programs in UX design. In this article, we will take a look at some of the best schools for UX design and the programs they offer.
UX design is an interdisciplinary field that requires a combination of design, psychology, and technical skills, and that's why it can be challenging for anyone who tries to master it. Some aspects of UX design, like visual design and user research, are especially challenging if students are unfamiliar with design principles or research methods. You will also need to gain practical experience using UX design tools that will help you make your design tangible.
Design collaboration in Mockplus RP.
Accreditation is a process by which a school or program is evaluated and recognized by an external organization for meeting certain quality standards. Accreditation, in general, can be a factor in determining the quality and reputation of a program. However, it is not always necessary or the most important factor in choosing a UX design school. Non-accredited schools or programs may still offer high-quality education and opportunities for students to develop their skills and build a strong portfolio. Some non-accredited programs may even have a more innovative or specialized curriculum that better aligns with your interests and goals.
Remote and in-person UX design programs have their benefits and downsides. The main difference between remote and in-person UX design programs is the learning environment. Remote UX design programs are typically delivered entirely online in a virtual classroom. The benefits of a remote UX design program include the following:
Students can participate in the program from anywhere as long as they have a stable internet connection.
Students typically have a more flexible schedule.
But they have downsides too, and one of the most significant is a lower collaboration among students. Collaboration among students is less active for remote programs rather than in-person.
In-person UX design programs, on the other hand, are typically delivered through traditional classroom sessions and in-person interactions with faculty and peers. Students attend classes on a regular schedule and have access to on-campus resources such as design labs. Here are the benefits of in-person programs:
Better interpersonal relationships between students and teachers. In-person programs offer opportunities for face-to-face networking.
More active collaboration during the session.
The major downside of in-person programs is that it can be challenging to attend in-person classes.
The schools mentioned in this section are among the best in the world for UX design, offering comprehensive programs that cover the latest techniques and trends in the industry.
The UX Design Institute is an online education platform that provides professional training in the field of UX design. It was founded in Dublin, Ireland, in 2013 and has since expanded globally, offering courses in over 100 countries. The institute offers several programs, including a Professional Diploma in UX Design, a fully accredited course recognized by the British Psychological Society.
A Professional Diploma in UX Design is designed for people who want to move to the field. It equips them with the knowledge and skills necessary to design effective and engaging digital products and services. The UX Design Institute also offers a range of short courses on topics like design thinking, prototyping, and user testing. These courses are designed for individuals who want to upskill or learn specific aspects of UX design.
€2,950 for Professional Diploma in UX Design; €750 for short courses like UX Design Fundamentals
The institute will teach you to think like a UX designer. You will learn essential UX concepts such as user research, information architecture, interaction design, and usability testing that will help you complete complex projects.
The Professional Diploma program lasts for 6 months, with 5 hours per week. Short courses take 6 weeks.
Online, self-paced (you learn at your own pace)
UX Design Institute has 4.9 out of 5.0 (according to 663 reviews review published at Google)
Carnegie Mellon University is a university located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA. It is known for its strong programs in computer science, engineering, and the arts. Carnegie Mellon University offers B.S. in Human-Computer Interaction. CMU's program is housed within the School of Design, one of the world's oldest and most respected design schools in the world.
B.S. in Human-Computer Interaction is a highly regarded program that provides students with a comprehensive education in all aspects of UX design.
For the 2022-2023 academic year, the estimated cost of attendance for undergraduate students at Carnegie Mellon University is approximately $80,817 per year. It's one of the most expensive programs on our list.
Human-Computer Interaction produces HCI specialists who are technically skilled and adept at designing and prototyping interactive solutions. Students graduating from the HCI primary major will have a unique perspective on how digital products and services should be designed.
The B.S. (Bachelor of Science) in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) program at Carnegie Mellon University typically takes four years to complete, assuming the student takes a full course load each semester and does not take any breaks.
It's a full-time undergraduate program. It means that students attend classes on campus and take a full course load each semester, typically four courses per semester.
CMU has a rating of 3.5 out of 5 (according to 1,442 reviews published at Niche)
Stanford University is a university located in Stanford, California, USA. It is one of the most prestigious universities in the world, known for its strong academic programs, cutting-edge research, and entrepreneurial culture. Interacting with technology should be as easy and intuitive as interacting with other humans. The Human-Computer Interaction Graduate program at Stanford is dedicated to helping people create excellent products.
HCI program is good for anyone who wants to master the discipline of human-computer Interaction and be able to build digital products.
Tuition fees range from $18,200 to $22,400, depending on the classes you choose to take.
You'll learn how to design intuitive systems and interfaces that are elegant, effective, and ethical. You will know how to design patterns for social computing and crowdsourcing systems and familiarize yourself with concepts and techniques for constructing interactive web applications and methodologies for creating effective visualizations.
Students must complete four courses within 3 academic years.
Stanford University has a review of 4.4 out of 5.0 (based on reviews at Gradreports).
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is a university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. It is known for its strong programs in science and engineering, as well as its cutting-edge research and entrepreneurial spirit. MIT embeds the Media Lab, an interdisciplinary research lab that focuses on the intersection of technology, media, and art. And within the Media Lab, a program called “Media Arts and Sciences” allows students to explore and develop new technologies and media, with an emphasis on creative expression, scientific discovery, and social impact.
MIT's Media Arts and Sciences program is primarily designed for graduate students interested in exploring the intersection of technology, media, and art. The program is highly interdisciplinary and is open to students with a wide range of academic backgrounds, including computer science, engineering, art, design, psychology, and social science.
In the 2023-2024 academic year, the Media Arts and Sciences program tuition was $57,590 per year for both in-state and out-of-state students.
Students of the Media Arts and Sciences program learn how to design, develop, and deploy new technologies, media, and applications that can have a positive impact on society while also exploring the ethical and social implications of these technologies.
The graduate program typically takes two years to complete. Students in the program must complete coursework, research projects, and a thesis.
It's a full-time, on-campus graduate program.
MIT has a rating of 4.0 out of 5.0 (according to 653 reviews published at Niche)
The University of the Arts London is a world-renowned art and design university located in London, England. It comprises six colleges that offer a wide range of undergraduate and graduate programs in art, design, fashion, communication, and more. The university offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs related to UX design, including a BA User Experience Design program at the London College of Communication and an MA User Experience Design program at Camberwell College of Arts.
The programs are designed to prepare students for careers in user experience design, which involves designing and developing digital products and services that are effective, engaging, and user-friendly.
As of the 2023-2024 academic year, the tuition fees for the MA User Experience Design program at Camberwell College of Arts are £12,700 per year for UK and EU students and £25,970 per year for international students.
BA User Experience Design program at the London College of Communication and an MA User Experience Design program at Camberwell College of Arts provides students with a strong foundation in UX design principles and methods, as well as opportunities to work on real-world projects and develop their portfolio.
Both are full-time undergraduate programs that typically take three years to complete.
Offline, on-campus programs.
StudentCrowd Students' Union score: 3.74 out of 5 based on 1,181 reviews published at Studentcrowd.
The University of California, Berkeley is a public research university located in the San Francisco Bay Area of California, United States. It is known for its academic excellence and vibrant campus community. The University of California, Berkeley, offers several UX-related programs, both at the undergraduate and graduate levels. At the undergraduate level, the university offers a Bachelor of Arts in Cognitive Science, which covers topics such as perception, attention, language, and decision-making, all relevant to the UX design field. At the graduate level, UC Berkeley offers a Master of Information and Data Science program, which includes a specialization in User Experience Design.
The programs that Berkeley university offers prepare students for careers in UX design and research by providing them with a strong foundation in topics such as Human-Computer Interaction, usability testing, and design thinking.
As of the 2022-2023 academic year, the estimated tuition fees for the undergraduate Bachelor of Arts in Cognitive Science program are approximately $14,312 per year for California residents and $44,066 per year for non-residents. For the graduate-level Master of Information and Data Science program, the estimated tuition fees are approximately $11,442 per semester for California residents and $13,604 per semester for non-residents.
By studying at Berkeley, you can learn from experienced faculty members and industry professionals in product design, as well as be engaged in cutting-edge research, and gain access to state-of-the-art facilities and resources.
The Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree is a four-year undergraduate program. The Master of Information and Data Science (MIDS) program at the University of California, Berkeley, is a part-time program that can be completed in as little as 20 months or five semesters. Each semester is approximately four months long, and the program follows a cohort-based model where students progress through the coursework together.
The Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Cognitive Science program at the University of California, Berkeley is a traditional on-campus undergraduate program. The Master of Information and Data Science (MIDS) program at the University of California, Berkeley is a primarily online program that follows a part-time format.
Berkley university program receives a rating of 3.5 out of 5 based on the 4,304 reviews published at Niche
The University of Washington is a public university located in Seattle, Washington. It is one of the oldest universities on the West Coast and is known for its highly-ranked programs in fields such as computer science, engineering, medicine, and social work. The University of Washington offers several UX-related programs, including a Bachelor of Design in Interaction Design, a Master of Human-Computer Interaction & Design, and a Certificate in User-Centered Design.
The UX programs offered by the University of Washington are intended for students who are interested in the field of user experience design, which involves designing and creating products, services, and experiences that are user-friendly, effective, and efficient.
As of the 2021-2022 academic year, the estimated cost of attendance for in-state students in the Master of Human-Computer Interaction & Design program is approximately $31,200 per year, while the estimated cost of attendance for out-of-state students is approximately $48,000 per year.
The UX programs offered by the University of Washington cover a range of topics related to user experience design. In these programs, students can learn about the principles of design thinking, user-centered design, and Human-Computer Interaction. They can also develop skills in areas such as user research, prototyping, usability testing, and visual design.
The UX programs offered by the University of Washington have different durations depending on the level of study and the format of the program. The Bachelor of Design in Interaction Design program is a four-year program. The Master of Human-Computer Interaction & Design program is a two-year full-time program or a three-year part-time program.
The Bachelor of Design in Interaction Design program is an on-campus program where students attend classes in person. The Master of Human-Computer Interaction & Design program is offered in both an on-campus format and an online format.
The University of Washington receives a rating of 4.0 out of 5 based on the 4,533 reviews published at Niche.
The Georgia Institute of Technology is a public research university located in Atlanta, Georgia. It is known for its strong emphasis on science and technology and is ranked among the top public universities in the United States. Georgia Institute of Technology offers a Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction program through its School of Interactive Computing.
The program prepares students for careers in user experience design, user research, and other related fields by providing a combination of theoretical knowledge and hands-on experience in design and research.
For the 2021-2022 academic year, the estimated tuition and fees for in-state students is $7,344 per semester and $14,688 per semester for out-of-state students.
You will have a comprehensive understanding of the theoretical and practical aspects of human-computer interaction, user experience design, and user research. You will also learn how to apply design principles and research methods to create effective and efficient user interfaces, as well as how to conduct user testing and evaluation.
The on-campus program takes two years to complete, while the online and hybrid formats take three years to complete.
The Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction program at Georgia Institute of Technology offers multiple formats to accommodate students' diverse needs. The program can be completed on-campus, online, or as a hybrid of both formats.
Georgia Institute of Technology receives a rating of 4.0 out of 5 based on the 2,135 reviews published at Niche.
The Royal College of Art is a public research university in London, UK, specializing in art and design. It is consistently ranked as one of the world's top universities for art and design education. The Royal College of Art in London offers a Master of Arts (MA) program in Service Design, which includes courses in user research, prototyping, interaction design, and service design. They also offer a Master of Arts (MA) program in Information Experience Design, which focuses on the design of interactive products, services, and systems, and covers topics such as user-centered design and information architecture.
The MA programs in Service Design and Information Experience Design at the Royal College of Art are designed to prepare students for careers as UX designers, product designers, and service designers. These programs are intended for individuals who want to gain in-depth knowledge and practical skills in user-centered design and design thinking and apply these skills to create innovative products, services, and systems.
The MA programs in Service Design and Information Experience Design costs £14,175 for UK/EU students and £33,600 for international students.
The programs are for students who want to explore the intersection of information, technology, and human behavior.
Both programs take two years to complete.
Both programs are offered in a full-time format.
Royal College of Art got a rating of 4.3 out of 5 based on 119 reviews on Google.
Aalto University is a Finnish university known for its strong focus on interdisciplinary research and education in technology, business, and art and design. It is located in the Helsinki metropolitan area and is recognized as one of the top universities in the Nordic region. Aalto University offers several UX-related programs, including a Master's Programme in Human-Computer Interaction and Design and a Master's Programme in Visual Communication Design.
The programs are open to students with diverse academic backgrounds, including design, engineering, psychology, computer science, and others.
The tuition fees for the Master's Programmes for non-EU/EEA students are €15,000 per academic year. For EU/EEA students, there are no tuition fees.
The programs focus on user-centered design, design thinking, and the use of emerging technologies, as well as research methods and project management skills. Graduates will be able to work in a range of fields, such as software development, UX design, and product management.
The Master's Programmes at Aalto University lasts two years or four semesters.
Programs have a full-time format.
Aalto university got a 4.2 rating at Eduopinions based on 23 reviews.
Choosing the right school for you depends on various factors, such as your goals, interests, budget, and location preferences. Consider what you want to achieve by attending school and how much time and money you can spend on education. Based on that, you will choose the format (online or offline), and then you can go to the school that satisfies your needs.
Completing a UX design program doesn't guarantee a job, but it can help you acquire the skills and knowledge required to pursue a career in UX design. Also, many universities have strong connections with industry partners and provide career services to help students find employment after graduation.
Pursuing a career in UX design requires not only passion but also proper education and training. Attending a reputable and well-respected school can give you the necessary skills and knowledge to succeed in this field. We hope the list of schools we've shared in this article will help you in your journey.
Whether or not you should go to school for UX design depends on your personal goals and circumstances. While formal education can provide a structured learning environment, it is not the only way to gain the skills and knowledge needed for a career in UX design. Some people may benefit more from self-study.
Degrees in Human-Computer Interaction, Computer Science, Cognitive Psychology, or Graphic Design can benefit UX designers because they all relate to user experience design.
User experience umbrella. Image via Slideshare.
Graphic design, psychology, and computer science are the top three majors for UX design. Graphic design major provides a strong foundation in design principles and visual communication, which are important skills in UX design. Studying psychology can help you understand human behavior, cognition, and perception, which are critical factors in creating user-centered designs. A degree in computer science can give you a deep understanding of technology and programming, which is helpful when working with developers to bring your designs to life.
Yes, a degree can provide you with a strong foundation in design skills and access to valuable networking opportunities and internships.