I wrote before that I believe we all should learn all our lives. One resource I use regularly is the Interaction Design Foundation. I’ve been a member since 2013 and have even written for their UX Daily and as promised here is a short review of their learning platform.
First a bit about them…they are a non-profit organization based in Denmark that offers more than 30 courses, has 15M readers, and has built a name for themselves in the industry. Such a name actually that I was once asked on an interview for a UX Design position if I was an IDF member.
When I started taking their UX courses 3 years ago, they were only text-based, which for me was great. I learn with Gilmore Girls playing in the background and write a lot of notes, which are easier to make if you have text-based lessons. Besides that this way gave me enough freedom to learn anywhere, anytime. This is now changing a bit. Now more and more courses are video-based or have a combination of both. Personally I think the combination is the one that wins, but this really depends on your learning style.
Their courses are generally really good. I’ve been working in the industry for 5+ years now and I still learn new things with them. One thing that I miss however is the mentor. Sure, they have mentors that check some of your assignments, but I never get any feedback and all the assignments are graded really good. I try my best to get those high scores, but still, a bit more feedback would be awesome.
Here are 5 reasons I choose IDF over and over again:
1. Good content in courses and their publications
You can choose from more than 30 courses that are labelled beginner, intermediate, or advanced, you can read their literature, and their blog UX Daily.
2. Possibility to market yourself with writing for their UX Daily
It’s hard. Marketing yourself and getting out there, making a name for yourself is hard. Even with all the social media. IDF is really trying to support their members and gives them the option to write for their blog UX Daily, promoting their work through their social media and that means publishing your writing to more than 15M readers!
3. Meetups and networking possibilities with other professionals
IDF supports local groups by connecting professionals that live in the same area and encourages them to meet in real life.
4. Very good reputation in the industry
I’ve felt this on my own skin when people reacted very positively after they’ve learnt that I’m a member of the IDF and I’ve noticed a lot of professionals that I look up to are members themselves. Besides the biggest name in the industry, Don Norman gave his thumbs up for it. How awesome is that!
5. Relatively cheap
You get everything for a reasonable yearly fee. Join through my referral link and you will even get 3 months FREE. Write for their UX Daily or invite friends to join and you’ll get even more free months.
I really don’t see any bad sides to joining the IDF community. It depends a bit on what you want from your education. Here you get valid and respected certificates, but you will not have a mentor, will be able to network, but will have to be proactive yourself, and will have to pay, but for a very low price comparing to some other educational websites, and you can even lower the price being a bit proactive.
If you decide to join don’t forget to use this REFER A FRIEND LINK as it will give you 3 months of IDF for free!
Until next time, don’t stop learning,