6 Best UX Design Courses to Start Your Career (Free & Paid!)

So, you’ve got the UX design bug, and now you’re looking for some best online UX courses to start your journey. But with a sea of online courses out there, it can be tough to figure out where to start. Worry not; we’re here to help you out! 

I’ve been in your shoes, and I’ve sifted through the options to bring you the top six stellar courses. Whether you’re a budget-conscious beginner or a seasoned pro wanting to level up, this list has something for everyone.

Undoubtedly, UX design is one of the most profitable skills to learn from home. It will secure your career by giving you multiple opportunities to make money online.

Six Best UX Design Courses

Keep in mind that not all the courses below can assure you a guaranteed job. Hence, you must be active in digging into the best job websites for graphics designing or UX/UI design opportunities.

1. Google UX Design Professional Certificate (Coursera): 

Learning ux design from courses
Price:  Free (with optional paid certificate) 
Duration: 6 months at 10 hours a week
Lessons: 7 modules + practical projects 
Tools: Figma, Google Analytics

You can think of this course as your UX design starter pack. Google, the king of user-centricity, has packed this online gem with everything you need to understand the core principles of UX design. From user research techniques to prototyping basics, it’s like having a friendly Google employee as your personal design coach.

What’s awesome:

  • No hidden fees, just pure UX knowledge goodness.
  • You’re free to complete the course at flexible times.
  • Put your newfound skills to the test with real-world challenges.

What to consider:

  • If you’re looking for job placement help, you might need to look elsewhere.
  • Requires more discipline than instructor-led courses.
  • Doesn’t offer deep advanced design software skills.
“I started with zero UX experience and now I feel confident to tackle real design projects. The Google instructors are amazing and the hands-on projects were super helpful.”
– Sarah K., Web Designer. (Former learner)

2. Skillshare Classes on UX Design

Price:  Individual classes ($19/month subscription) 
Duration: Varies by class (typically short and focused) 
Lessons: Video tutorials, downloadable resources, project prompts 
Tools: Varies by class, often covers popular design software

What if you see UX designers filled with fun and engaging classes like “Mastering Wireframing Techniques” or “Designing Delightful Microinteractions?” Well, that’s Skillshare in a nutshell. 

With its vast library of bite-sized classes, you can learn specific skills at your own pace and experiment with different areas of UX. Moreover, you can even discover hidden talents you never knew you had.

What’s awesome:

  • It’s very affordable for maximum people
  • Classes from basic concepts to advanced techniques.
  • Explore different styles and approaches to UX design.
  • Put your skills to the test with practical projects.

What to consider:

  • Make sure to choose classes from experienced instructors with good reviews.
  • These classes are short and focused, not for comprehensive skill development.
  • There’s no community or peer feedback on your work.
“Skillshare helped me discover my passion for UX design. I started with a few fun classes and then got hooked. Now I’m taking more advanced courses and building my design portfolio.”
– John M., aspiring UX Designer(Skillshare Student)

3. Springboard UI/UX Design Bootcamp

Price:  $12,995 (financing options available) 
Duration: 9 months (full-time, online) 
Lessons: Lessons: Live lectures, workshops, guest speakers, portfolio building 
Tools: Figma, Sketch, Adobe XD

This isn’t your grandma’s online course. Springboard’s Bootcamp is an immersive experience designed to catapult you into the UX design world in just three months. Think of it as a design boot camp, where you’ll sweat (figuratively, of course) alongside fellow aspiring designers under the guidance of expert instructors.

What’s awesome:

  • Get personalized coaching, build a killer portfolio, and land a guarenteed job.
  • Master the skills you need quickly and efficiently.
  • Learn from and network with instructors and peers.
  • Boost your resume and stand out from the crowd.

What to consider:

  • This course requires a significant investment. Join only if you can afford it.
  • Be prepared to dedicate yourself to full-time learning.
  • Not for the faint of heart, be ready to push yourself hard!
“Springboard completely transformed my career. I went from being a teacher with no design experience to landing a junior UX designer role at a top tech company. The support and network I gained were invaluable.”
– David L., UX Designer (Bootcamp Grad)

4. The Ultimate Guide to Usability and UX (Udemy): 

Price:  $19.99 (often discounted) 
Duration: 13.5 hours (on-demand video lectures) 
Lessons: Comprehensive overview of UX principles, design processes, tools, and case studies 
Tools: Figma, Sketch, Adobe XD

Imagine a crash course in UX design condensed into one power-packed online lecture series. That’s Udemy’s “User Experience (UX): The Ultimate Guide to Usability and UX” in a nutshell. 

Taught by experienced instructors, this course covers everything from understanding user needs to creating usable and delightful interfaces. It’s a great option for beginners looking for a comprehensive foundation in UX, without the hefty price tag of a bootcamp.

What’s awesome:

  • Udemy courses are very affordable
  • A broad overview of the entire UX process.
  • Watch video lectures at your own pace and convenience.
  • Includes case studies and hands-on exercises to apply your knowledge.

What to consider:

  • No instructors to answer your questions or provide feedback.
  • Requires self-motivation and discipline to stay engaged.
  • The amount of information might be overwhelming for beginners.

Quote from a Udemy student: “

This course gave me a fantastic foundation in UX design. I learned so much about user research, prototyping, and usability testing. Now I feel confident to start applying my skills to real-world projects.”
– Sarah J., Marketing Coordinator. (Udemy Student)

5. Interaction Design Foundation (IDF) Courses: 

Price:  Individual courses ($49-$199) or subscriptions ($24/month). 
Duration: Varies by course (self-paced). 
Lessons: Video lectures, quizzes, case studies, downloadable resources. 
Tools: Varies by course.

Think of IDF as your UX design à la carte menu. Feeling peckish for some prototyping skills? Grab the “Prototyping for Beginners” course. Need a refresher on user research? The “Usability Testing Essentials” course is on the menu. With a variety of affordable options, IDF lets you pick and choose the skills you want to master at your own pace.

What’s awesome:

  • Learn on your own schedule, with no deadlines or pressure.
  • Perfect for busy schedules or specific skill gaps.
  • Taught by industry professionals with years of experience.
  • Videos, quizzes, case studies, and downloadable resources 

What to consider:

  • You’re in charge of your own job search.
  • Requires discipline to stay on track with self-paced learning.
  • No live sessions or peer connection for deeper learning.
I love the flexibility of IDF courses. I can learn about specific UX topics that interest me on my own time. The case studies and downloadable resources have been really helpful in putting my learning into practice.
– Emily C., Product Designer (IDF Student)

Bonus Tip: If you’re unsure where to start, IDF offers “UX Design Foundations” as a comprehensive overview of the field. It’s a great way to sample the menu before committing to specific courses.

6. Nielsen Norman Group Free Trial: 

Price:  Free for 14 days, then $49/month
Duration: 14-day free trial access to articles, videos, and resources 
Lessons: In-depth articles, reports, usability testing insights, expert advice 
Tools: N/A, focus on theoretical knowledge and research methodologies

Nielsen Norman Group (NNG) is the gold mine of UX research and best practices. This industry leader offers a treasure trove of articles, videos, and reports on all things UX, from user testing techniques to design patterns. 

We’d suggest to take the “NNG Free Trial” first. You’ll have access to a wealth of valuable insights that can elevate your UX game to the next level. If you like the course, you can check out the premium version.

What’s awesome:

  • Access to insights from the world’s leading UX researchers.
  • Deep knowledge of specific UX topics with in-depth articles and reports.
  • Access the latest industry trends and research findings.
  • Try it out before committing to a paid subscription.

What to consider:

  • It focuses on theoretical knowledge, not hands-on skills.
  • The sheer amount of information can be daunting for beginners.

Conclusion

So, with six fantastic options on the table, how do you choose the right one for you? Here’s the final guide which can help you choose the right UX design course to outshine your designing journey (career).

For budget-conscious: Free courses like Google UX and IDF are great starting points, while Springboard and NNG subscriptions offer deeper dives at a cost.

For self-paced learning: If you love to learn by yourself, Skillshare and Udemy might be ideal choices to boost your learning. However, the Springboard course with live sessions could be good for career development.

Evaluate your goals: Are you looking for a quick skill boost? Skillshare and Udemy’s short classes might be perfect. Seeking career advancement? Springboard’s bootcamp could be your ticket.

Remember, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to UX design learning. You must be The best course is the one that aligns with your needs, budget, and learning style. Explore, experiment, and don’t be afraid to mix and match options to create your own personalized learning journey.

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