UX Design Essentials: Books, Courses, and Communities You Should Know

Embark on a Path to Successful UX Design with this Resources List with Links. November 2023 edition.

Lera Gudmundsdottir K
3 min readNov 10, 2023

You won’t find any AI tools here, but this list has been compiled as an essential foundation for your professional status in the UX field. And it is quite useful not only for beginners, but also as supporting materials for accomplished professional UX designers. Remember — it’s never too late to refresh our knowledge and stay relevant in the job market.

Excited young blonde female teacher wearing glasses in classroom standing in front of chalkboard holding book on head looking at camera

Yes, start with books:

  1. Don’t Make Me Think” by Steve Krug: A classic book on web usability that’s essential for UX designers.
  2. The Design of Everyday Things” by Don Norman: A foundational book on design principles and human-centered design.
  3. The Elements of User Experience” by Jesse James Garrett: Offers a comprehensive framework for understanding and designing UX.
  4. Interaction Design: Beyond Human-Computer Interaction” by Jennifer Preece, Yvonne Rogers, and Helen Sharp: Covers various aspects of interaction design.
  5. Seductive Interaction Design” by Stephen Anderson: Focuses on creating engaging and persuasive user interfaces.
  6. The User Experience Team of One. A Research and Design Survival Guide” by Leah Buley: Offers efficient approaches with a big impact, ideal for both newcomers and seasoned UX professionals seeking to drive change and achieve more with fewer resources.

Top UX-related websites and blogs. Bookmark them:

  1. Nielsen Norman Group (NN/g): A leading authority on UX research and design, they offer a wealth of articles and reports.
  2. Smashing Magazine: Provides articles, books, and resources on web design and development, including UX.
  3. A List Apart: Features articles on web design, accessibility, and UX.
  4. UX Design Institute: Offers articles and resources on UX design, as well as a Professional Diploma in UX Design program.
  5. UX Collective: A Medium publication with a wide range of UX-related articles and insights.

Online Courses and Platforms. Gain achieves:

  1. edX: Provides courses in UX design from universities and institutions worldwide.
  2. Interaction Design Foundation (IDF): Offers a wealth of UX courses and resources, including their UX Design Bootcamp.
  3. Coursera: Offers courses like “Interaction Design Specialization” and “User Interface (UI) Design Specialization” from top universities.
  4. Udemy: Features a variety of UX design courses, including “User Experience (UX): The Ultimate Guide to Usability and UX.”
  5. LinkedIn Learning: Offers courses on UX design, usability, and user research.
  6. UXcel: an online platform that offers UX design courses and certification programs. It provides practical training in UX design principles, user research, interaction design, and more.

Communities and Forums. Discuss and collaborate:

  1. UX Stack Exchange: A Q&A platform where UX professionals share knowledge and help each other with design-related questions.
  2. Designer News: A community for designers, including UX designers, to share news, resources, and insights.
  3. UX Design Slack Communities: Join this Slack communities to connect with other UX professionals and discuss industry trends.
  4. Reddit’s r/userexperience: A subreddit for UX designers to discuss topics, share resources, and seek advice.

The Most Popular Tools and Software:

  1. Figma: A collaborative design tool widely used for UX and UI design.
  2. Sketch: A vector-based MacOS design tool popular among UX/UI designers.
  3. Adobe XD: WAS an Adobe’s tool for UX and prototyping.
  4. InVision: A platform for creating interactive prototypes and design collaboration.
  5. Balsamiq: A wireframing tool for quick and easy sketching of interface ideas.
  6. Lyssna (ex UsabilityHub): A platform for usability testing and feedback on your designs.
  7. Optimal Workshop: Offers tools for conducting user research and optimizing information architecture.
  8. Crazy Egg: A tool for heatmap and user behavior analysis.
  9. Maze: A user testing platform for running tests on designs, prototypes, and websites to gather insights and improve user experiences

So, what are your picks? Which resources you think are not relevant? Or maybe you would like to add more gems? Don’t be greedy, share your favorites in the comments with the crowd.

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Lera Gudmundsdottir K

Aspiring Entrepreneur, UX engineer. Helping developers with UX design tasks since 2006. Growing my pet fastredesign.com