UX Researcher

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What Is a UX Researcher? How to Become One, Salary, Skills.

UX researchers are responsible for studying and understanding what users of a system or product need and want. UX researchers use their findings to improve the design of goods, software and services. Here’s what to know about a UX researcher’s salary, needed skills and how to become one.

 

What Is a UX Researcher?

UX researchers study user behavior to answer important questions about how digital products and services are designed and how customers interact with them. The goal of a UX researcher is to improve a product or service through their findings. Some of the key insights UX researchers must uncover about users include their demographic information, how they use a product, what they get from a product and what issues they may have with the product. 

 

What Do UX Researchers Do?

UX researchers are tasked with learning what motivations, needs and behaviors users have when interacting with a product or service. The two main types of UX research are quantitative and qualitative. The goal of quantitative research is to identify the experience of a user by looking at data, such as click-through rates on landing pages, for example. The goal of qualitative research is to understand why users behave the way they do, and for this, UX researchers rely on field studies, moderated usability tests and user interviews.

UX Researcher Responsibilities

  • Design, organize and implement user research projects, including A/B tests, field studies, user surveys, user interviews and usability tests.
  • Analyze and synthesize qualitative and quantitative research to create and report findings.
  • Present findings to designers, developers, leadership and stakeholders. 
  • Collaborate with product and design teams and provide actionable feedback. 

Day-to-Day Responsibilities of UX Researchers

  • Craft user research plans.
  • Develop budgets and timelines for research projects. 
  • Recruit targeted users.
  • Conduct user interviews. 
  • Create user surveys. 
  • Organize usability tests.
  • Conduct field studies.
  • Analyze results from interviews and surveys. 

UX Researchers Within a Company

UX researchers are typically part of the product development team within a company. They often collaborate with leaders on the product team and design to create research plans, analyze results and data from surveys and questionnaires and make product recommendations. 

Importance of UX Researchers

UX researchers help companies understand the needs and wants of their customers as they approach the product or service. Without thoughtful UX researchers, companies will overlook the most important part of the design process: empathy. 

How to Become a UX Researcher: the ultimate UXR career guide. | Video: aonatalks

 

What Skills Are Needed to Be a UX Researcher?

Qualifications to Be a UX Researcher

  • Experience designing and executing user research.
  • Knowledge of UX design principles.
  • Strong understanding of statistics and data.
  • Experience with user research tools and software.

UX Researcher Prerequisites

  • UX researchers usually hold a bachelor’s degree in psychology, statistics, human-computer interaction, information systems or a related field. 
  • A portfolio of previous user research projects. 

UX Researcher Hard Skills

  • Data analysis.
  • Math and statistics.
  • UX research methods and software tools. 
  • User testing. 
  • Basic design skills.

UX Researcher Soft Skills

  • Empathy and curiosity.
  • Interpersonal communication and writing skills.
  • Problem solving and critical thinking skills.
  • Collaboration and teamwork skills.

Tools and Programs UX Researcher Use

  • Google Forms 
  • UserZoom
  • Dscout
  • Hotjar
  • Google Optimize
  • Optimal Workshop
  • Typeform
  • Lookback
  • Maze
  • Miro

 

How to Become a UX Researcher

UX Researcher Education and Experience

UX researchers can come from a variety of different backgrounds; there isn’t one set degree that is necessarily best for UX research. Studying technology or behavioral and social sciences can all be relevant to UX research, as an understanding of tech and how humans interact with it is central to the role.

Outside of education, volunteering to run UX research projects for local businesses and non-profit organizations, as well as participating in hackathons, may be helpful experience in developing a UX research portfolio.

UX Researcher Certificates and Courses

UX Researcher Career Path

Although UX researchers can come from many different educational backgrounds, starting a UX research career with an internship is a great first step in the field. UX researchers may later take on roles such as UX designer or UX engineer.

 

UX Researcher Salary and Job Outlook

UX research is a growing field, with 41 percent of researchers only having five years of experience in the field. But the size of UX researcher teams is expected to grow too. Of UX researchers surveyed by User Interviews, 71 percent said there are five or more researchers on their team.

The full compensation package for a UX researcher depends on a variety of factors, including but not limited to the candidate’s experience and geographic location. See below for detailed information on the average UX researcher salary.

Courses

Expand Your UX Researcher Career Opportunities

Build a multi-dimensional skillset by completing online UX and design courses through Udemy.

General Assembly

Are you interested in UX Design, but have no prior experience or an idea of where to start? You’ve come to the right place!

4.5
(462)
Udemy

Topic:

Understand User Experience Design ( UX ) to begin designing web and mobile apps to keep your users engaged and happy.

 

What you'll learn:

  • Understand the basics of…

4.5
(2039)
Udemy

Topic:

Beginner to advanced in mere hours! Learn to confidently use modern, effective usability testing and UX research methods

 

What you'll learn:

  • Capture actionable…

4.4
(742)
Udemy

Topic:

Get a job in UX and build your user research and UX design skills with this hands-on user experience training course.

 

What you'll learn:

  • Bake UX into your…

4.5
(6035)
Certifications

UX Researcher Certifications + Programs

Reignite your journey up the career ladder with Udacity’s online UX and design certifications.

General Assembly’s User Experience Design Immersive is a transformative course designed for you to get the necessary skills for a UX Design role in three months. 

The User Experience Design bootcamp is led by instructors who are expert practitioners in their field, supported by career coaches that work with you since day one and enhanced by a career services team that is constantly in talks with employers about their UX Design hiring needs.

 

What you'll accomplish

As a graduate, you’ll have a portfolio of projects that show your creative and technical ability to launch the next generation of successful apps, websites and digital experiences. Throughout this program, you will:

  • Identify and implement the most effective methods of user research to gain a deeper understanding of what users want and need.

  • Use interaction and visual design techniques to craft a dynamic digital product that brings delight and function to users.

  • Conduct usability testing to make product experiences more accessible for diverse user populations and environments.

  • Learn best practices for working within a product team, employing product management techniques and evaluating technical constraints to better collaborate with developers.

  • Produce polished design documentation, including wireframes and prototypes, to articulate design decisions to clients and stakeholders.

  • Prepare for the world of work, compiling a professional-grade portfolio of solo, group, and client projects.

 

Prerequisites

This is a beginner-friendly program with no prerequisites, although many students are familiar with common tools for graphic and web designers and some may have had exposure to UX concepts in the past. The General Assembly curriculum helps you gain fluency in end-to-end UX processes, tools, and documentation and put them to work on the path to a new career as a User Experience Designer.

 

Why General Assembly

Since 2011, General Assembly has graduated more than 40,000 students worldwide from the full time & part time courses. During the 2020 hiring shutdown, GA's students, instructors, and career coaches never lost focus, and the KPMG-validated numbers in their Outcomes report reflect it. *For students who graduated in 2020 — the peak of the pandemic — 74.4% of those who participated in GA's full-time Career Services program landed jobs within six months of graduation.  General Assembly is proud of their grads + teams' relentless dedication and to see those numbers rising. Download the report here.

 

Your next step? Submit an application to talk to the General Assembly Admissions team


 

Note: reviews are referenced from Career Karma - https://careerkarma.com/schools/general-assembly

General Assembly
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