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What makes a good UX designer?

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UX in digital continues to be a fast growing area, for which we seem to be recruiting for more and more often. Being in the fortunate position to be reviewing CVs and incredibly talented UX people, it becomes apparent that their career paths vary significantly.

Regardless if you are wanting to pursue a career in UX or should you be looking for a UX professional, you are most likely aware that specific UX-related courses and qualification are rather new and experienced professionals that can deliver the best UX results may not actually have UX specific qualification on their CV.

To give you an idea of just how varied career journeys and backgrounds of very talented UX professionals can be, we caught up with Will Wellesley-Davies, Senior Visual / UX / UI Designer, Freelancer, Manisha Attar, Senior UX Designer at Nomensa and Paul Davies, Head of UX at Etch UK.

The full interviews are also on our website. Here an extract, their responses to the question: Where did you gain your professional skills?

Will Wellesley-Davies “I studied Graphic Design at degree level which gave me a good foundation in the basic principles of communication design. Interactive media was in its infancy when I left university and so I got involved in a number of artistic projects that explored the potential of this new medium.

A lot of my specific UX skills have been self- taught over the years by keeping up with industry best practice. Throughout my career I’ve also regularly attended courses for specific software training at different levels and been on courses for production management and presentation techniques.”

Manisha Attar “I started out doing a Multimedia Technology & Design degree at Brunel University. The course was very much self-based learning.

From the very beginning it was made clear that I had to constantly be learning new skills to evolve and keep up with technology and techniques. I do this by regularly reading the news, blogs, tutorials and magazines like .net and signing up to newsletters from relevant parties.”

Paul Davies “My psychology teacher at school really evoked a sense of fascination in me about how we work as humans, so I decided to continue by reading for a psychology degree at University. I specialised in human attention and memory and, after completing my degree, I was offered a scholarship PhD investigating the effect of heads-up displays on the attention of aircraft pilots.

At that point I didn’t want to dive into any narrow area, so instead I went back to University in Bristol to study graphic design. At this time my motivation was to try and achieve a personal aim of pursuing a creative career as it was always a hobby at school and university."

There you have it. Brilliant UX talent can come from a vast range of pathways, definitely something to remember should you be looking for UX talent or looking to break into the sector yourself. With either intention, feel free to get in touch, we might be able to connect you with the right people.

This piece previously appeared on the ADLIB Blog.

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