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COVID-19 Update

Commencement 2020 will be held later this year. Click here for Commencement info. For all updates, visit: Bentley.edu/coronavirus

UX Boot Camp

Stay tuned for our Spring 2021 Dates!

Group working together around a large sheet of paper.

About the UX Boot Camp

The UX Boot Camp is a one-week intensive program offered once a year at Bentley University. The Boot Camp offers a powerful combination of presentations and applied workshops led by Bentley faculty, and an expert panel comprised of industry leaders. As a participant, you will experience the complete design lifecycle by carrying a design problem from research, through design, to validation.

Launch Your UX Career

The UX Boot Camp highlights the growing importance of the user experience as a strategic business advantage and a point of differentiation in mature or hyper-competitive markets. As a leading business university, Bentley is uniquely positioned to deliver this perspective in a thoughtful and challenging learning experience. We leverage our twenty-nine year tradition of delivering leading-edge user experience programs to deliver an unparalleled student experience.

expert panel.
meena lecturing.

Designed for You

The UX Boot Camp was carefully designed to accommodate a diverse range of participants including designers, UX researchers, usability specialists, business analysts, product managers, market researchers, and developers. The curriculum is continually updated to reflect emerging market conditions and employer demands. Participants leave the UX Boot Camp with a toolkit of design, research, and strategic best practices central to successful product innovation.

Bring the Boot Camp In-House

The boot camp program is available for delivery at your work site.

Learn more about our In-House Education Services here

student laughing.

Where can your career go next?

Experience it here... and now.

Shayla headshot.
The Bootcamp is an immersive, top-notch experience. The instructors are real practitioners and have such a wealth of experience that they infuse seamlessly into the course. This course was invaluable in my own UX journey. Thanks to Bentley for getting it done right.
Shayla Williams Fender
Vice President, Membership and Inclusion, AIGA Connecticut

Registration Details

Cost

Registration price is $6,200. Our early bird registration costs $5,600. Given the limited enrollment, the boot camp will fill quickly. The cost of the program does not include hotel and travel. Continental breakfast and lunch are included in each day's schedule.

Organizational & Bentley University Alumni Discount

Save 10% on registration when three or more participants from the same organization enroll in the same course. Bentley University Alumni can also receive a 10% discount on all UX Certificate courses. Contact Shannon Shea at sshea@bentley.edu to receive the discount.

Transfer Credit

The User Experience Boot Camp and the User Experience Certificate are designed as standalone programs. Camp graduates may, however, request to have the camp experience applied to credit for two courses in the larger certificate. Students who wish to do so are urged to seek advising on course substitutions to minimize possible redundancy between the two programs.

For participants of the User Experience Certificate program, this program fulfills two course requirements: IN922C Usability Testing (required) and an elective course of the participant's choice.

Cancellation Policy

Our cancellation policy requires that notice of cancellation be submitted in writing to Gail Wessell (gwessell@bentley.edu). Cancellations made 21 or more days before the program begins are subject to a cancellation fee of $400. No refunds are given for cancellations made less than 21 days prior to the program's start. Bentley reserves the right to cancel any course in the event of low enrollment. Bentley is not responsible for travel costs in the event of a cancellation.

Key Topics

Please note that topics listed below may be slightly modified based on participants' backgrounds and current needs.

User Experience as a Strategic Advantage

This session examines the changing marketplace for technology products and the role of the user experience as a competitive advantage. We will consider how to leverage your investment in the user experience strategy to every touch-point with the customer, assuring a consistent and appropriate total customer experience. Numerous case studies from diverse industries will serve as a basis for this presentation

Elements of the User Experience

This session examines the sensory and psychological aspects of the user experience. We begin by considering the design of the sensory experience. We directly relate how the sensory scene is processed and organized to the processing of that information in the mind. We then consider the role of the user’s mental model in assigning meaning to the sensory scene and the role of prior knowledge in top-down processing. We further examine the role of high-value cognitive processes such as decision making, learning and search. Finally we’ll consider the role of memory and how we can better manage cognitive workload through more efficient designs.

User Research and Definition

This session focuses on the process of conducting diligent user requirements gathering. Building on the preceding session that identifies universal interaction behaviors, here we discuss key methods applied in user research and field studies, to identify contextual variables critical to a successful user experience. We focus on the importance of defining the user population with standard methodologies ranging from market segmentation to personas. To conclude this session and prepare for design implementation, we will learn how to translate requirements from users and key stakeholders into communicable inputs for design.

Design Implementation

This session implements the previously defined user requirements by exploring the potential design space and discovering opportunities for innovation. We examine the design stages, techniques, and real-world examples through hands-on design and prototype development. Student teams generate scenarios and storyboards, providing a foundation to synthesize features into logical areas comprising an information architecture. Teams explore the relationship between content types and navigational metaphors to iteratively create designs that maximize the efficiency of content, presentation, and interaction. Teams then share, critique, and defend their progress to identify revisions before usability assessments.

Validation and Evaluation

Throughout the design process and particularly in the final stages of design, the product must be evaluated to ensure it meets the user, business and technical requirements. This session examines the benefits and mechanics of testing and distinguishes between formative, summative and competitive protocols. Participants will have the opportunity to design, facilitate-observe a test in our newly renovated User Experience Center. Teams will learn to analyze the test results, prioritize findings, and make research-supported recommendations. The session will consider remote testing technologies, heuristic reviews, and cognitive walkthroughs as alternatives to traditional lab-based assessments.

Process Improvements and Success Metrics

In addition to the primary benefits to the user community, a successful user experience strategy must also deliver returns to the development organization through measurable process improvements and a subsequent reduction in development costs. The week-long session closes out with a discussion on the importance of accountability in the user experience lifecycle.

Debbie cook
Debbie Cook
Boot Camp Faculty

Debbie Cook is the Director of Experience Research at WW (formerly Weight Watchers) in New York City. She has over 15 years’ experience with user-centered research and design techniques that span the product development life cycle. Prior to WW, Debbie worked as Manager and Principal UX Specialist at MathWorks in Natick, MA. At MathWorks, Debbie conducted user research, influenced UX strategy and helped grow a world-class UX group. Debbie also worked at Bloomberg L.P. where she led a team of UX professionals and programmers tasked with designing and delivering internal software applications. Debbie holds a BS in Business Management from TCNJ, as well as an MS in Human Factors in Information Design and an MBA from Bentley University. In addition to teaching at Bentley’s UX Boot Camp, Debbie has co-led UXPA workshops on usability testing and collaborative task analysis.

William Gribbons
William Gribbons
Boot Camp Faculty

William Gribbons, PhD, is the academic director of the Information Design certificate program. He is also the director of the Human Factors in Information Design program at Bentley College. Gribbons was the driving force behind the Design and Usability Center, where he serves as senior consultant. He is a past President of the Boston Chapter of the Society for Technical Communication (STC), an associate fellow in the STC, and a member of the Technical Communication editorial board. Gribbons received his PhD in education and visual communication from the University of Maryland.

Bill Hartman
Bill Hartman
Boot Camp Faculty

Bill Hartman is a senior consultant and group leader at Essential Design — a research, strategy, and development firm in Boston. He is a frequent guest lecturer at Bentley and has a broad background in user-centered design. Bill especially enjoys the translation of user and channel inputs into design requirements, and has a particular interest in participatory design research methods that yield compelling, differentiated solutions for products and interactive systems. Prior to joining Essential, Bill worked as an independent consultant to a number of clients and industries. His past roles also include Vice President of Product Development at Fitch Worldwide, and Director in the User Experience group at Scient Corporation. Bill has helped organizations develop interactive systems for wide-ranging consumer and B2B applications. Select clients include: Dell, Ford Motor Company, DaimlerChrysler, Toyota Financial Services, Discover Card, State Street Bank, Aetna USHealthcare, Time Warner Cable, Baxter Healthcare, Genzyme, Haemonetics, WrightLine, PatientKeeper, Shure, Altec Lansing, Harvard University, Crown Equipment Corporation, and the AARP. Bill is a graduate of Davidson College (A.B.) and the Institute of Design/Illinois Institute of Technology (M.Des.).

Meena K
Meena Kothandaraman
Boot Camp Faculty

Meena Kothandaraman has more than 13 years of experience in usability related tasks that encompass key aspects of the design life cycle: data gathering, task analysis, interface design, prototyping and usability testing. She has effectively applied these techniques to products ranging from software applications design to web-to-wireless products. Meena has also promoted the importance of customer experience and has related this concept back to the key return-on-investment factors. She has contributed to articles on this content from Forrester Research and InfoWorld. Meena has taught classes on web design and usability testing, and facilitated design workshops implementing the "white room" concept for creative problem solving. Previously, she managed the customer experience team at Scient Corporation, and worked as a consultant with Human Factors International and Cambridge Technology Partners. She is an Experience Strategist at twig+fish in addition to teaching at Bentley. Meena holds a Master's Degree in User Centered Behavior and Design from Syracuse University.

Deb R
Debra Reich
Guest Speaker

Debra Reich has been developing products for over 25 years. She has worked in various industries including healthcare, computer peripherals, software services, and consumer electronics. Her work has been focused on the user experience across both hardware and software platforms. Debra’s study of the human experience has been bolstered by extensive travel. She is currently a Product Concept Strategist at Bose Corporation and a lecturer at Tufts Gordon Institute.

Debra holds a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial Design from Carnegie Mellon University and a Master of Science Degree in Human Factors in Information Design from Bentley University.

Talk Description:

User-Inspired Innovation

The early days of product development can be fraught with missteps, confusion, and time wasted on bad ideas.  The work of user experience professionals can provide guidance to ensure the development team has a clear mission with prioritized goals. User research that focuses on the emotional jobs to be done is also beneficial when defending your project to C-level sponsors.  This talk is meant to be an open and honest dialogue about how UX plays a key role in product innovation.