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Best UX research courses (According to Our Survey)
User Research

Published on January 25, 2024

Best UX research courses (According to Our Survey)

In a survey of 327 UX professionals, we gathered recommendations on the best UX courses in the market. This article presents the top eight courses based on their feedback, offering a guide for those looking to enhance their skills in UX.

Keep up to date with the most recent article on UX research courses. Our list aims to simplify your decision-making process when choosing where to expand your knowledge.

Table of contents

Recommended course providers for UX researchers

Explore our selection of user research courses, handpicked by experienced user researchers. Click a provider for detailed information and tips on specific courses.

  1. Zero to UX
  2. Interaction Design Foundation (IxDF)
  3. Nielsen Norman Group
  4. Coursera
  5. Google
  6. Udemy
  7. Human Factors International (HFI)
  8. Pluralsight

🐝 Note: Each organization in our list has been given a normalized score in the range 0-10, simplifying the process of comparison and selection for you. This scoring system is based on our survey in the UX research community. You can learn more about the survey and its methodology here.

Who provides the best-rated courses for UX researchers?

Explore top courses for UX researchers from the most famous providers, acclaimed for their quality and expertise. These selections are the best according to our survey, showcasing the elite in the field.

best-rated courses for UX researchers

Top course providers ranked across different experience levels

This graphic illustrates the preferred course providers for UX researchers at various experience levels, highlighting which options are best suited for different stages in a UX research career.

Top course providers ranked across different experience levels

Recommended selection of courses

Explore course providers for UX researchers in this section. These organizations are highly rated in our survey, offering specialized courses. Find your match among these choices.

UXtweak Recommends🐝

If you’re interested in high-quality UX research training, we recommend the Ask Like a Pro workshops from Curiosity Tank. These workshops are led by UXR expert Michele Ronsen and designed for professionals who are looking to break into the field or improve their skills to stay competitive. The individual workshops are available OnDemand. The remote, 8-week online cohorts include mentorship, providing step-by-step guidance, proven methods, and tools for conducting meaningful, relevant, and impactful research. 

Learn more and sign up here. Enter discount code: UXTWEAK10% in the checkout to receive 10% off OnDemand workshops

#1 Zero to UX 

Zero to UX provides a range of services including Mock Interviews, Portfolio/Resume Reviews, and Consulting Calls for career guidance in UX Research. They also offer Enterprise Consulting.

Zero-to-UX-2

Source: zerotoux.com 

Score: 10/10 🥇

About UXR Masterclass

For readers of this article, the standout service of Zero to UX is the UXR Masterclass, where you’ll learn not only about conducting UX research but also about human factors psychology, leadership and management, integrating AI into your process, and successful UX business strategies. Kevin Liang, a renowned expert in the field, teaches this course, ensuring a high-quality learning experience.

🗣 Students’ impressions overview

Students have praised Zero to UX for its course content, clear presentation, and passionate instructors. The interactive assignments and quizzes were highlighted as engaging and effective in teaching UX principles.  Overall, Zero to UX receives positive feedback from students for its impactful and enjoyable UX research course.

Want to know more about Kevin Liang?

Listen to our podcast episode where he discusses how he guides students through Zero to UX, teaching not just research methods, but also cultivating leadership qualities essential for becoming competent UX leaders.

#2 Interaction Design Foundation (IxDF)

The Interaction Design Foundation (IxDF) is a non-accredited educational platform offering open access, graduate-level courses in fields like user experience and interface design, taught by industry experts and professors.

IxDF

Source: interaction-design.org

Score: 8.29/10 🥈

About their courses

The Interaction Design Foundation ranks among the top three most cost-effective choices globally for UX education, offering a diverse array of courses categorized into Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced levels.

Recommended courses include Data-Driven Design: Quantitative Research for UX for beginners, User Research – Methods and Best Practices for intermediate learners, and The Brain and Technology: Brain Science in Interface Design for advanced students. Every successful graduate from the Interaction Design Foundation’s courses receives a certificate.

🗣 Students’ impressions overview

IxDF offers an affordable foundation in UX design, but it’s essential to supplement with additional resources. While earning a certification boosts confidence, practical skills and empathy are equally vital. IxDF provides excellent value for UX education and clarifies the path forward in this field. Highly recommended for those seeking UX knowledge.

#3 Nielsen Norman Group

The Nielsen Norman Group, is a renowned American firm specializing in user interface and user experience consulting. While investing in their courses may be costly for beginners, it’s highly recommended for those with more experience due to the firm’s respected industry expertise.

NNg

Source: nngroup.com

Score: 8.03/10 🥉

About their courses

NNg provides in-person and virtual full-day and multi-day courses, all qualifying for UX Certification. Participants can specialize in Interaction Design, Research, or Management, covering topics like research methods, strategy, and UX leadership. To earn UX Certification, attendees must pass online exams for each course, ensuring they can apply what they’ve learned.

🗣 Students’ impressions overview

From the students’ view, NNg courses, though expensive, are rich in research-based content, requiring active involvement and self-study for full benefit. They provide well-organized, quality materials, practical tips, virtual networking, and knowledgeable lecturers. Completing a course also earns you a widely recognized certificate, enhancing your resume.

#4 Coursera

Coursera, a U.S.-based online course provider, offers a wide range of courses, certifications, and degrees in collaboration with over 275 universities and companies, totaling more than 7,000 courses.

coursera

Source: coursera.org

Score: 6.93/10👈

About their courses

As of 2024, Coursera offers over 1,200 user research courses from various providers, including the University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, University of Virginia, Google, and other organizations. Notable courses for UX researchers include the University of Michigan’s User Experience Research and Design and the University of Minnesota’s User Research and Design.

🗣 Students’ impressions overview

With a wide range of courses, maintaining a consistently high quality of education can be challenging for this organization. Students have noted several areas for improvement: a need for more quizzes and interactive content to keep engagement high, even in shorter videos; better guidance on evaluating peers’ work and providing constructive feedback; and more flexible access to weekly sessions to accommodate those who wish to progress at a faster pace and stay engaged.

#5 Google

Google LLC, a global tech giant, is renowned for its market dominance, AI prowess, and data collection. As part of the Big Tech elite, including Amazon, Apple, Meta, and Microsoft, it’s a powerhouse in AI, online advertising, search engines, cloud computing, and more.

google

Source: grow.google/intl/en_in

Score: 6.81/10👈

About their courses

Google’s highly-rated UX research courses are often available on Coursera, offering convenient access to their offerings through this platform. Among these courses, Conduct UX Research and Test Early Concepts stands out as a valuable introductory resource for UX researchers.

🗣 Students’ impressions overview

The Googles courses are educational, offering informative content. Students appreciate the interactive elements in certain sections, such as teamwork, and find the learning experience enjoyable. Despite occasional slower pacing, after students successfully complete the courses, they often express gratitude to Google and Coursera for the excellent learning opportunities provided.

#6 Udemy

Udemy, founded in 2010, is an edtech company that provides an online learning platform. They offer a range of courses to help organizations enhance their strategies.

Udemy

Source: udemy.com

Score: 6.18/10👈

About their courses

Udemy provides a wide range of courses in development, business, finance, marketing, design, IT, and more. Courses are priced up to 100 euros, offering lifetime access to lessons. Upon course completion, participants receive a certificate.

🗣 Students’ impressions overview

At Udemy, the experience with their UX courses varies significantly depending on the specific course and individual expectations. Some students have voiced concerns about outdated information, lengthy content, contradictions in teaching, and unrealistic tips that overlook practical constraints. However, others have found value in these courses, especially for those open to exploring new perspectives. These courses are seen as accessible and beneficial in fostering critical thinking, problem-solving, and creativity.

#7 Human Factors International (HFI)

HFI transforms businesses in the post-digital era by creating influential and engaging digital experiences that nurture lasting customer relationships.

hfi

Source: humanfactors.com

Score: 6.06/10👈

About their courses

HFI offers certification tracks for UX practitioners at different career stages. The Certified Usability Analyst (CUA) certification is suitable for those starting or transitioning into a UX career, providing recognition as a usability authority and access to an exclusive online community. The Certified User Experience Analyst (CXA) certification is for advanced practitioners, focusing on motivation, persuasion engineering, and ecosystem-level thinking.

🗣 Students’ impressions overview

Opinions on HFI’s  certification vary. While it offers a comprehensive understanding of usability, some believe it may not significantly enhance job prospects compared to practical project experience. Others recommend more affordable usability courses on platforms like Udemy with better student reviews. Ultimately, the value of HFI’s CUA certification depends on individual career goals and preferences in the field.

#8 Pluralsight

Pluralsight, is an online education company that offers a diverse catalog of video training courses for software developers, IT administrators, and creative professionals.

Pluralsight

Source: pluralsight.com

Score: 2.60/10👈

About their courses

Pluralsight offers courses in various categories, including software development, security, data and machine learning, IT operations, and more. Their unique feature is Pluralsight Skills, a platform that assesses and helps learners measure and improve their tech skills. It identifies skill gaps and provides curated learning paths to progress from novice to expert.

If UX is your area of interest, you might find the course “UX User Testing” intriguing. However, it’s important to note that Pluralsight’s UX courses are primarily designed for beginners, so experienced professionals may not discover advanced insights on this platform.

🗣 Students’ impressions overview

Students has mixed feelings about the organization. They appreciate the variety of topics but feel that it can sometimes lead to inconsistent quality and lack of focus. They like the visual learning format and the convenience of the mobile app, allowing them to continue from where they left off.

🐝 Tip: Are you aspiring to become a professional user experience designer? Check out our article on the UX design processes to gain insights into essential design concepts and establish a solid foundation in the field of user experience design.

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About our “Best UX research courses” survey

What was the process behind our survey? We started by selecting courses from various articles that recommended reading for UX specialists. This formed a shortlist that our respondents could assess. They had options to mark each course as ‘Not familiar’, ‘Would recommend’, ‘Indifferent’, or ‘Would not recommend’. Once the survey concluded, we analyzed these responses to draw our conclusions.

How our rating methodology works?

  1. In our approach to rating the courses, we started by calculating the percentages of respondents who had either recommended it, expressed indifference to it, or not recommended it, disregarding the respondents who selected the “not familiar with” option.
  2. We then determined a net recommendation score for each course by subtracting the percentage of non-recommendations from the percentage of recommendations.
  3. This score effectively captures the overall sentiment toward each course, taking into account both positive and negative opinions.
  4. To make an easier comparison across the courses, we normalized these net recommendation scores to a scale ranging from 0 to 10. The highest-ranked course was assigned a score of 10, and the scores for the other courses were adjusted proportionally.
  5. This normalization process helps us present a clear, quantifiable, and easy-to-understand rating for each course, reflecting its relative standing among the survey respondents.

We believe this method provides a balanced view of the respondents’ preferences.

Where do our survey respondents come from?

We’re thrilled to report that 327 individuals from more than 40 countries chose to participate in our survey! A detailed look shows 48.8% were from the North America, followed by 36% from Europe, then 9.3% from Asia, 3.5% from South America, 1.4% from Africa and 0.8% from Australia and Oceania. The participants were from countries such as Ireland, the Netherlands, Canada, Argentina, Sweden, Denmark, Poland, among others. It’s fantastic to see such wide and diverse involvement! 😊

Respondents

How much experience in UX field do our respondents have?

Finally, we will explore the distribution of our respondents based on their levels of experience as UX researchers, spanning from less than 2 years, 2-5 years, 5-10 years, to over 10 years of experience.

levels of experience as UX researchers

🐝 Tip: Do you want to get in touch with people from the UX community but don’t know where to look? See our article Best 30 UX Communities and Groups to Join!

Jana Filusova
January 25, 2024
All author's articles

Jana Filusova, our Marketing Executive at UXtweak, brings a scientific approach, analytical skills, and a business background to her role. She is responsible for running our podcast "UX Researcher Geeks" and content creation. Jana's academic background is in Molecular Biology and Genetics, and she spent three years as a researcher at the Czech Academy of Sciences. After completing her Master's studies, she shifted from the world of science to the field of Business Management and began working for UXtweak.

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