User Experience Institute with Susan Weinshenk, Ph.D.

Susan Weinshenk is the Founder and President of the User Experience Institute. (Previously she was the Chief of User Experience Strategy, Americas at Human Factors International.) She has over 30 years experience in the field of human factors/usability/user experience (UX) – including as author, trainer, researcher, consultant, presenter, and developing user-centered methodologies around web design and e-commerce Her most recent authored books are 100 Things Every Designer Needs To Know About People and Neuro Web Design: What Makes Them Click? . (She also has a companion blog at whatmakesthemclick.net and a podcast series on user experience.)

This was her website. Content is from the site's 2012 archived pages.

 

What Do You Need?

  • Training on the science of human design? Check out our virtual live seminars, or our instructor-led seminars.
  • Customized or on-site training?
  • Consulting on user experience design?
  • Sign up and be the first to know when we add new seminars and research results:

Our instructor-led workshops are hand-on and interactive. We will customize the workshop to suit your audience and your needs. Call us at 847-909-5946 to discuss what you need.

Here are some examples of the workshops we teach:

How to Get People To Do Stuff

Whether you have a product that you want someone to buy online, a self-service form that you want people to fill out instead of calling you, or an online community that you want people to join, getting people to take action means you have to understand the psychology of motivation and behavior. In this workshop we explain, demonstrate, and apply the research of behavioral psychology and show you how to apply these powerful principles to get people to do stuff. You will apply what you are learning with exercises and case studies. You will learn:

  • The role of habit in behavior
  • Why seeing progress toward a goal is motivating
  • When rewards work and when they don’t
  • How to use surprise and unpredictability to motivate
  • How the desire for mastery is motivating
  • How the drive to be autonomous is motivating
  • How to get around people’s natural laziness
  • Harnessing the dislike of boredom
  • When competition is not motivating
  • Using the desire to connect and be social to motivate
  • About people’s built in tendency to imitate
  • When making something hard makes it more desirable
  • When anticipation is more important than reward
  • How most goals and desires are unconscious
  • About unconscious decision-making
  • How having an experience can be more motivating than having a possession
  • When and why people look at what other people are doing to decide what they should do
  • How the “persona” that a person has of themselves influences their behavior
  • How to get people to change long held beliefs and actions

And how to apply these principles to your situation and for your products.

Participant Materials To Take Away

Each participant will receive a full seminar manual that contains all the materials used in the class, plus Quick Reference Summaries.

What Every Designer Needs To Know About People 

It’s easy to get caught up in design and implementation and forget that at the end of your project is a person you are designing for and communicating with. If you want to effectively reach and interact with your target audience, then you need a basic understanding of how people see, read, think and behave. Designing without understanding about people is like exploring a new city without a map: results will be haphazard, confusing, and inefficient. We’ve hand-picked the most important “things” that you need to know in order to design intuitive and engaging websites, applications and products that match the way people think, work, and play:

  • How people see and read
  • How people do and don’t pay attention
  • What we know about human memory, cognition, and thought processes that affects design
  • The research on social behavior that impacts design
  • What motivates people
  • How people make decisions

This is hands-on workshop. You will apply what you are learning with exercises and case studies to improve the design and optimize both usability and engagement for our case study or your own that you bring with you.

Participant Materials To Take Away

Each participant will receive a full seminar manual that contains all the materials used in the class, plus Quick Reference Summaries.

How to Take Your Presentation And Speaking Skills To The Next Level

Whether you are presenting your ideas to your team, presenting to upper management, making recommendations to a client, or closing a sale, being able to make a persuasive and skillful presentation is critical to your own professional growth and to the success of your work. Whether you are an experienced polished presenter, or someone who avoids speaking to a group, you can improve your presentation skills. We explain and demonstrate what we know about people, how they think and learn, and how to use the research in psychology to improve your own presenting and speaking skills. This is a hands-on workshop. You will learn and experience the following:

How people see…how people listen…how people decide…

How people react to you…How to stand… What to do about eye contact… What to do about gestures… What to do about your voice… How to identify your physical “quirks”

How to change your presentation style and message for different audiences… How to change your presentation based on the physical environment… Using or not use a microphone and podium

How to craft your message…How to structure your presentation for maximum effectiveness… Whether and how to use Q&A

How to open your presentation… How to engage your audience’s emotions…What to do and not do to hold on to attention

The impact of media…The pros and cons of using different media… When to use slides… When to use video… when to use audio…

The call To action…Deciding on your call to action… Building your call to action in to your presentation… Stretching your audience far enough but not too far

Participant Materials To Take Away

Each participant will receive a full seminar manual that contains all the materials used in the class, plus Quick Reference Summaries.

 

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Virtual Series Courses

You can take an entire course with our Virtual Series Course. Each course meets once a week for five weeks in a row.

Below is a list of our current virtual series courses.

For details on each course, click on the View Course Details link.

To register for a course, click on the Register button and a separate Go To Training page will open.

How To Take Your Presentation And Speaking Skills To The Next Level — 5-week course

Whether you are presenting to your team, to upper management, or to a client, making a persuasive and skillful presentation is critical to your growth and success. Whether you are an experienced polished presenter, or someone who avoids speaking to a group, you will learn how to improve your presentation skills.

Dates and Times:
Tuesday, January 10, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CST
Tuesday, January 17, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CST
Tuesday, January 24, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CST
Tuesday, January 31, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CST
Tuesday, February 7, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CST

How To Conduct Effective User Research: Personas, Psychographics, Scenarios and Task Analysis — 5-week course

To design a product that is usable and engaging, you need to know who you are designing for and exactly what it is they are going to do. You need to develop personas, scenarios and task flows. This course teaches the what and how of user research before you design.

Dates and Times:
Wednesday, February 8, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CST
Wednesday, February 15, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CST
Wednesday, February 22, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CST
Wednesday, February 29, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CST
Wednesday, March 7, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CDT

How To Create An Intuitive And Usable Product – Conceptual Models, Information Architecture, and Navigation — 5-week course

If you want to design a usable and intuitive website or application then you have to purposely and intentionally design the conceptual model of the user interface, and then use that model to make decisions about the flow of screens, what goes on a particular screen and what the users will be looking at when. Designing an intuitive and usable product isn’t a mystery. In this course you will learn a straightforward and powerful process you can use to design a user interface that is intuitive and usable.

Dates and Times:
Thursday, May 3, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CDT
Thursday, May 10, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CDT
Thursday, May 17, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CDT
Thursday, May 24, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CDT
Thursday, May 31, 2012 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CDT

 

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