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16 Nov

Faculty Focus: Paul Sherman on UX Theory and Practice

For all of us who use software daily, user experience (UX) design is both everywhere and nowhere: It has shaped an expanding number of websites and technologies that users interact with across the internet.

But if it's truly done well, it likely goes unnoticed, leaving the user feeling good about the product or experience without recognizing why it was so seamless. UX design helps perfect the invisible architecture of our online experiences.

To do that, however, requires mastering more than just technical skills or coding. UX design is a field that requires both theoretical knowledge and a solid grounding in practical experience. In our video below, assistant professor Paul Sherman discusses why UX design requires grounding in both theory and practice.

"We really have both the foundational knowledge that we impart to students as well as the practical experience of our instructors and professors," Sherman observes, "and that's because most of us, if not all of us, have experience in the field, trying to advocate for UX in organizations large and small." Their experience gets passed on to students in the form of real, applicable skills.

In his earlier blog post on the importance of soft skills, Sherman discussed how UX is interdisciplinary, requiring the UX designer to interface with engineers and product designers and be conversant in their methods and tools to collaborate effectively. Here, he explains what makes Kent State University's online Master of Science in UX Design program stand out from the pack.

Watch our video below to hear the rest of our interview with Paul Sherman.

Curious about how to take your UX career further? Read about the difference between a UX bootcamp and a master's program here, or check out the benefits of earning a UX master's degree here.