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User Experience DesignCourse Descriptions

Designed for Busy Professionals

Kent State’s online Master’s in UXD program is designed for busy working professionals, with the following features:

  • 36 credits, with 12 three-credit courses
  • Courses are seven weeks in length, with two courses taken sequentially each semester
  • Multiple sections of each course are offered to keep class sizes small and maximize collaboration
  • Program consists of seven core required courses (21 credit hours), four electives (12 credit hours) and a culminating requirement (3 credit hours)
  • Professional portfolio course helps you develop a digital body of work to help you find employment in a UXD role—see examples from program alumni

Once you are admitted to the program, your Admissions Advisor will craft your personalized degree plan, giving you a clear course sequence and path to graduation.

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Course Descriptions

Core Courses (7 Courses, 21 Credit Hours)

UXD 60001 User Experience Design Principles And Concepts

Students explore the context in which User Experience Design exists and the various methods employed by designers in various fields related to design research, the generation of ideas and implementation of designs. Students are introduced to methods of design evaluation and to the conceptual framework of the related curricula. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 60002 User Experience Design In Practice

Students learn and employ methods for engaging in creative problem solving. Introduce students to design research methods and current research on human behavior as it applies to user experience design. A core set of design deliverables are examined. Students begin to develop individual portfolio materials. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 60101 Information Architecture I

Introduction to the fundamental concepts and practices of information architecture (IA). Students develop practical skills for comparing, analyzing, critiquing and designing information architectures. Major topics include organization, navigation, labeling, search and other core IA concepts. Students learn to create blueprints, wireframes, process flows and other documents used to communicate an information architecture design. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 60102 Principles of Interaction

This course provides students with an overview of interaction design principles and concepts. It is divided into five modules. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 60103 Researching The User Experience I

Design research seeks to understand user needs, goals and tasks. Deals with research methods for human-centered design of information-rich artifacts and experiences. Covers interviews, surveys, diary studies and other methods applicable to the formative stages of the design process. Students learn to distill research findings into audience segments, user profiles, personas, scenarios and other documents that model user behavior. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 60104 Usability I

Provides a conceptual and practical overview of the processes and methods of usability testing, such as Think Aloud protocols, performance measurements and eye-tracking analysis. Actual usability testing is performed, using quantitative and qualitative methods and employing current and emerging software tools to facilitate data collection and analysis. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 60118 Accessibility Evaluation and Universal Design

This course provides learners with an understanding of the principles of accessibility and universal design, and how they guide and influence the design of digital experiences. Students also learn how to evaluate software and hardware products for accessibility. The course is divided into five modules.

In the first module, students learn about the different types of disabilities (i.e., visual, auditory, physical/motor, cognitive, temporary and environmental), and how they affect a person's interaction with technologies. Students also become familiar with assistive technologies, how people with disabilities make use of them, and what limitations they impose. The assignment for this module will be to write an accessibility and universal design justification brief for an organization. In the brief, learners will describe what accessibility and universal design are, and why the organization should begin to address it.

The second module will introduce learners to key accessibility guidelines and standards for web, mobile and hardware experiences, as well as the principles of universal design. Learners will become familiar with the guidelines and standards for designing accessible experiences for a variety of task types, including form completion, content creation and consumption, and other common web-based tasks. For the assignment learners will apply the knowledge they've gained by creating a plan for conducting an accessibility evaluation on several areas of an organization's web site.

During the third module, students will learn to perform an accessibility evaluation, and then document their findings in a manner intended to persuade an organization to address the accessibility issues they identified.

In the fourth module, learners will put principles into practice by designing an interaction following the principles of universal design.

The fifth module provides learners with the opportunity to create a comprehensive plan for incorporating accessibility into an organization's product/service design, development, quality assurance and deployment life cycle.

Electives (choose from the following)

HI 60414 Human Factors and Usability in Health Informatics

Provides students with the foundational principles of usability and human factors as applied to safety and quality in health informatics technology. Course readings and materials review the concepts of human factors, usability and the cognitive consequences of health information technology on clinical performance and decision making. Attention is given to the role of mobile computing in health care, as well as information visualization. (3 Credit Hours)

LIS 60636 Knowledge Organization Structures, Systems and Services

Introduction to various types of knowledge organization systems, services and structures (KOS) used in the networked environment. Understanding of the functional philosophical, logical and linguistic fundamentals of KOS. Explanation of design options, features of KOS, and procedures to be used in thesaurus, taxonomy and ontology construction. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 60111 Information Architecture II

This course will cover current topics in architecting for a changing web environment. Conceptual and technical aspects of Web 2.0 and Rich Internet Applications (RIA) have created the need for different types of design deliverables and usability considerations. In order to understand how to architect for Web 2.0, we must come to an understanding of what it is and how it works at least at a basic level. In addition, design tools to aid information architects are becoming more advanced and can aid IAs, making them more effective and efficient. These tools will be covered in depth. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 60112 Interaction In Practice

This course provides students with experience planning, designing and prototyping interactions. Students will learn common interaction design (IxD) methodologies, what is expected of interaction designers, and what deliverables a designer typically provides. Students will practice interaction design by specifying content organization, hierarchy and user journeys for a mobile application in wireframe form. Students will create a functional prototype, building in the basic functionality needed for navigation and process funnels. Finally, students will test their prototypes formally. (3 Credit Hours)
Prerequisite: UXD 60001 and UXD 60002; and graduate standing.
Pre/corequisite: UXD 60102

UXD 60113 Researching User Experience II

In order to design and develop effective user interfaces, task analysis process and theory are explored and applied via principles drawn from anthropology, ethnography, cognitive psychology, document and instruction systems design and marketing research. Practical techniques and methodologies are presented to improve interface design through all phases of the design process. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 60114 Usability II

Provides students with an understanding of qualitative and quantitative research methods appropriate for conducting advanced studies of human interaction with computers. In addition, students learn how to evaluate, purchase, implement and operate equipment for usability labs in a manner consistent with research methods. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 60117 UXD Leadership

The importance of user-centered design to organizational success is increasing, and user experience professionals are moving into higher level roles within their organizations. This course will teach UX professionals about leadership, followership, the ethics of design, and how to become an effective leader within an organization.

UXD 60691 Seminar In User Experience Design

Advanced research by students who are qualified to examine problems of certain special areas related to concentrations of study in user experience design. (1-3 Credit Hours, repeatable for credit)

UXD 60792 Elective Internship In User Experience Design

Supervised work experience in user experience design of a professional nature of not less than 100 clock hours (for 2 credit hours) or 150 clock hours (for 3 credit hours) with directed readings and preparation of a paper. (2-3 Credit Hours)


Offered irregularly as resources and/or opportunities permit. Topics could include current or emerging issues in user experience design.

Culminating Requirement (choose from the following)

UXD 66080 Professional Portfolio Design And Assessment

Students complete the assembly and evaluation of their work throughout the User Experience Design program in the form of a professional portfolio that will be used in efforts to gain employment or freelance work. Evaluation is done through critique by User Experience Design faculty and by peers. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 66092 Master's Internship In User Experience Design

Supervised work experience of an advanced professional nature that concentrates on developing skills in areas of user experience design and integrates their knowledge from all UXD courses and experiences. Students must have completed a minimum of 30 credit hours towards the user experience design major prior to registration. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 66098 Masters Project In User Experience Design

Provides a means for the application of the knowledge, research and competencies learned through study in user experience design to the development of an information system, product, setting or service. Cumulative GPA of 3.000 is required prior to enrolling in the course. Students must have completed 30 credit hours towards the MS-UXDE program prior to registration. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 66198 Master's Research Paper In User Experience Design

Under the advisement of a faculty member, students will complete a research paper that serves as a culminating experience for the M.S.-UXD degree. Students must have completed 30 credit hours towards the MS-UXDE program prior to registration. (3 Credit Hours)

UXD 66199 Thesis I

Thesis students must register for a total of 6 hours, 2 to 6 hours in a single semester distributed over several semesters if desired. Students must have completed 30 credit hours towards the MS-UXDE program prior to registration. (2-6 Credit Hours)


Every UX designer needs a robust digital portfolio. As part of the Professional Portfolio Design and Assessment course, one of your options for the culminating requirement of this program, you’ll develop a portfolio highlighting projects from your coursework. To help you improve your design and presentation, you’ll present this body of work for critique by your faculty and peers.

Want examples? Check out these projects and portfolios from our program alumni:

Kelly Van Wert, MS ’18

UX Specialist

animated gif that flashes between the different phases of UX design

For this project, Kelly outlined how a company could expand their reminder app. Her portfolio covers her approach to solving the issue—from user research to wireframes to prototyping—as well as lessons she learned along the way.

View Kelly’s Portfolio

Ken Jackson, MS ’17

UX Designer and Product Manager

animated gif that flashes between the different UX creation phases of an app called Lunch Buddy

Ken’s portfolio walks you through the proposal, wireframes, personas, sitemap and prototypes he created for a Lunch Buddy App, which allows parents to manage various aspects of their children’s in-school cafeteria lunch accounts.

View Ken’s Portfolio

From Our Students

Kendra Jobes
“Through my various portfolio pieces, I was able to show that I've been involved in every step of the UX process.”
- Kendra Jobes, MS ’19 Candidate

Course Requirements

Courses are delivered through our course management system, Blackboard Learn. Course content consists of text, narrated PowerPoint presentations, video and audio, live chats, discussion groups and other learning enhancements. To participate in this online program, you will need a computer with a broadband Internet connection. Your program may have further requirements that include the ability to record video and audio.

If you have questions regarding technology requirements for this program, please contact your Admissions Advisor at or toll-free at +1 844-234-4073.

Meet the faculty

Get a program brochure.

This will only take a moment.

Step of % Complete
Why are you interested in earning this degree?
Who is this brochure for?

By clicking "Get Brochure,” I agree to provide the contact information listed above for the purpose of receiving communications regarding educational programs and opportunities.

By clicking "Get Brochure,” I agree to provide the contact information listed above for the purpose of receiving communications regarding educational programs and opportunities.