Create Technology Experiences That Delight
Next start date
September 27, 2017
You can tell almost immediately when a website or app has been designed with the user in mind — it’s intuitive, appealing and effective. As technology firms and other organizations recognize the importance and business value of a great user experience, the demand for UX designers has soared.
In this four-course certificate program, you’ll develop a thorough understanding of the core principles of user-centered design. We’ll explore how usability studies and information visualization can influence web design and product development, and look at the latest innovations in the field. Acquire the in-depth knowledge and skills you need to craft your career in this dynamic profession.
▸ Related Article: Hot Jobs: User Experience Designer
Professionals with some experience in design, software development, product development or product marketing.
A bachelor’s degree from a four-year, accredited institution, combined with a minimum of two years of work experience in a related field.
If you are a non-native English speaker, you'll need one of the following minimum test scores to participate in this program:
To enroll, international students must have a visa that permits study in the United States. This program does not enable students to obtain or maintain F-1 visa status. For more information, see Admission Requirements for International Students.
You must have access to a computer, and we recommend a high-speed internet connection.
You earn the certificate by successfully completing four of the seven courses. Students must earn a grade of at least 2.7 in each course and maintain an overall GPA of 3.0 or higher. You are expected to complete the program within seven quarters. For more information, see Completing Your Program.
Daniella Kim, an instructor for the Certificate in User-Centered Design, talks about the cutting-edge nature of the program and significant career benefits for students.
By completing this certificate program, you can earn up to 12 graduate credits toward degree requirements should you later be accepted into the Master of Human Centered Design & Engineering. To use these credits, you must obtain graduate nonmatriculated status before you register for the first course of the certificate program.
You must complete three required courses and one elective course to earn the certificate.
User-Centered Design (HCDE 518)
Choose One of Three Sections
Usability Studies (HCDE 517)
Choose One of Four Sections
Seminar: Current Issues in Human Centered Design & Engineering (HCDE 521)
Visual Communication (HCDE 508)
Choose One of Two Sections
Information Visualization (HCDE 511)
Interaction Design & Prototyping (HCDE 536)
Certificate in User-Centered Design
Approved by the UW Department of Human Centered Design & Engineering.
View this program's advisory board.
Each of our programs uses an advisory board to review content, guide design and recommend updates to ensure the program remains current as the field of study evolves. By tapping the minds of the top thinkers, doers and leaders in the field, we offer a transformational learning experience. The following individuals serve as the advisory board for this program.
Sabina Alteras-Honig, Senior UX Researcher, Digital Products, Amazon
Jenny Blackburn, Director, UX Research & Concept Development, Amazon
Suzanne Boyd, Founder & Principal Consultant, Anthro-Tech, Inc.
Rovy Branon, Vice Provost, University of Washington Continuum College
Charlie Claxton, Chief Creative Strategist, UpTop
Rebecca Destello, Director of User Research, Anthro-Tech, Inc
Carla DiFranco, Program Manager, Microsoft
Jennifer Duncan, Resource Manager/User Experience Specialist, Usability Services, Boeing
Kelly Franznick, Chief Experience Officer, Blink
Julie Kientz, Assistant Professor, UW Human Centered Design & Engineering
Arnie Lund, Connected Experience Technology Leader and Human-systems Interaction Lab Manager, GE Global Research
Doug Pyle, Principal User Experience Researcher, GE Healthcare
Darrel Rhea, Founder & CEO, Rhea Insight
Candace Soderston, User Experience Consultant
Jan Spyridakis, Professor and Chair, UW Human Centered Design & Engineering
Jennifer Turns, Professor, UW Human Centered Design & Engineering
Skip Walter, Founder, Managing Director, Factor, Inc.
Carolyn Wei, User Experience Researcher, Facebook
Mark Zachry, Professor, UW Human Centered Design & Engineering
Download the application form (PDF)
Submit an application packet that includes:
The program begins in September 2017. We are accepting applications until 5 p.m. on August 10, 2017.
We’ll contact you by early September to let you know if you’ve been accepted to the program.
If you’re accepted, we’ll send you details about your first-term course, including information on paying your course fee. Your course fee is due four weeks before the first class.
With the exception of the one-time application fee, certificate program fees are charged on a quarterly basis. Payment is due when you register.
Course fees do not include any costs for class materials such as textbooks and software. The technology fee is based on the number of credits you are taking.
Drops, Withdrawals & Refunds
Attend class in person at one of our convenient locations. You’ll engage face to face with your classmates and instructors as part of a highly interactive curriculum. An online learning management system may be required to access some course materials and assignments.
Our special blended programs combine the convenience of online study with the vibrancy of in-person classes for a unique learning experience.
Not available for this program
Enjoy the flexibility of online learning, which allows you to participate in class activities, assignments and discussions on your schedule, from anywhere. Experience cutting-edge technology and a supportive, diverse learning community.
Assistant Professor, Department of Human Centered Design & Engineering, University of Washington
Senior Lecturer, Department of Human Centered Design & Engineering, University of Washington
Director, Human Centered Design & Engineering M.S. and Certificate Programs, University of Washington
User experience designers help create products that are, simply put, a pleasure to use. So it’s no surprise they’re in demand today. Learn more about this hot job and how you can break into the field.
If you’re thinking about heading back to school, you’re probably also wondering how you’ll pay for it. To help you figure that out, we’ve put together a list of ways to help fund your education.
Discover the essentials of e-learning design and explore the tools and techniques for developing and managing courses and programs.
Explore the fundamental concepts and practical applications of technical writing. Learn the styles, formats and requirements for different kinds of technical communication.
Study the full life cycle of digital product development. Learn how to manage the process, guide a team and bring a product to market successfully.
Advance your skills in researching, designing and engineering the interactions between people and technology.