UX Academy Policies

Our policies on what's expected from our students, refunds, and outcome guarantees

Timing Expectations

Designlab offers two tracks for students to choose from.

Full-time Track (40 hours/week)

  • The program takes about 12 weeks
  • Average of 2 mentor sessions a week (total of 24 mentor sessions)
  • Weekly Group Crits (student presentations)
  • Designlab’s money-back job guarantee (within 6 months of completing the program)

Part-time Track (20 hours/week)

  • The program takes about 24 weeks
  • Average of 1 mentor session a week (total of 24 mentor sessions)
  • Weekly Group Crits (student presentations)
  • Designlab’s money-back job guarantee (within 6 months of completing the program)

For Each Track

You are expected to complete all the assigned coursework each week — submitting projects, scheduling mentor sessions, and attending Group Crits according to the schedule. At the end of each week, we’ll send you an email reminder with a progress report.

Both the 40 hours/week and 20 hours/week tracks include our 6 month job guarantee. Designlab promises to provide the education you need to land you your first role as a junior user experience designer. You promise to stay on track, meet with your mentor(s) regularly as expected, attend & participate in the weekly Group Crits, and complete your coursework on time. You must honor your commitment to Designlab in order to qualify for our 6 month job guarantee. We can only ensure your career success when we work together.

Pausing the course and buffer time

Throughout the course, work will be evaluated and approved by your mentor. Projects are designed to help you develop your skills, and we expect that through practice and iteration, your deliverables will meet a baseline level of quality. Buffer time is built into the course schedule to allow you time to iterate on your design work. If you fall behind by more than this week of buffer time, contact us at hello@trydesignlab.com. We want to work together to ensure your success, and your proactive communication helps us ensure that you have the help you need.

UX Academy is an intensive course designed to give you the skills to start a new career. It is a huge undertaking, and falling behind will hurt your ability to succeed. Each phase of the course has a “buffer week” built in, designed to give you time to iterate on projects that need work. It's explicitly *not* a week to rely on for procrastinating, emergencies, or vacations.

We understand that circumstances come up (travel, medical emergencies, etc.) which may prevent you from keeping up with the course for a week or two. To help with this, we allow you two pauses, each one week long to use at your discretion throughout the course. While paused you will have access to your coursework, but you won’t be able to schedule mentor sessions.

Email us at hello@trydesignlab.com ahead of time and let us know the dates you’d like to pause the course. If something comes up that'll impact more than two weeks, let us know ASAP. The sooner we know, the more options we have to help you.

Failure to complete coursework, missed deadlines, or other unforeseen circumstances

Career shifts require dedication and time, and keeping up with the coursework may prove to be infeasible due to circumstances that are out of your control. If there is a sudden life change or you become overwhelmed with work or family struggles, we will do our best to work with you to help you stay on track and honor your commitment to the program. In certain cases, however, the situation is more than we can help with; in those cases we offer some alternate strategies. Here are the details:

With the week of buffer time taken into consideration, you cannot fall behind on the coursework for more than 40 hours. That’s two weeks behind if you’re on the part-time track or one week behind if you’re on the full-time track. Should you fall more than 40 hours behind, we reserve the right to withdraw you from the program and issue a prorated refund.

We reserve the right to withdraw you from UX Academy at any point. Reasons for withdrawal include:

  • Falling behind more than 40 hours on the coursework.
  • A no-show for a mentor session - failing to attend mentor sessions without notifying your mentor ahead of time.
  • Failing to schedule and attend Career Coach sessions.
  • Failure to complete agreed-upon milestones with your Career Coach.

With these policies, our goal is to help you structure a roadmap for success during the course, and to create a thriving UX Academy community with students and mentors working together to achieve their goals.

Course Refunds

If you’re unsatisfied for any reason within the first 2 weeks of the program, you can withdraw from the program and receive a full refund. If you decide to withdraw later on, we'll grant you a prorated refund.

Once you reach the third week, the $399 deposit becomes non-refundable. Refunds are pro-rated based on the time you’ve spent in the course.

Outcome Guarantee & Eligibility

If you are not able to get an entry-level job, internship, contract, or freelance project in UI/UX design within 6 months after successfully completing UX Academy, you may be eligible for a full refund. These are the requirements for eligibility:

Phase 1 & 2

Assessments and Progress Reports
Throughout the course, the quality of your work will be evaluated and approved by your mentor according to objective project assessments and a skills rubric. UX Academy is intended to prepare you for roles in a competitive job market, so the program has a baseline level of skills proficiency that you must achieve to advance through the course. You will not be permitted to progress from the Phase 1 Practicum to Phase 2 until you’ve met these academic expectations in a timely manner.

You can expect the following:

  • Objective project assessments for each project in the course, graded acccording to a skills rubric
  • Two Phase 1 formal checkpoints:
    1. A mid-phase progress report, where your mentor will evaluate your course progress and skills development
    2. An end-of-phase progress report, where your mentor will ascertain your overall development and ability to proceed to Phase 2.

If your work does not meet the expected quality by the end of Phase One, you will be asked to repeat work and develop your skills before moving onto Capstones and portfolio building.

Completion Requirements

  • You must complete 100% of the assigned readings & projects (including all of the capstone assignments), and submit iterations for projects based on mentor feedback. If you don't do the work and learn the material, we can't guarantee you'll get a job!
  • You must regularly attend your 1-on-1 mentor sessions. This means completing at least 8 mentor sessions per phase.
  • Attend weekly Group Crits (full-time students: at least 10 sessions throughout the course; part-time: at least 20 sessions)
  • Attend at least one networking or meetup in your city per month throughout your program enrollment

Additional Mentorship
By default, students receive 24 mentor sessions - 12 in each phase. Students may purchase additional sessions if they desire extra mentorship and coaching. To add on additional sessions, contact the Designlab team at hello@trydesignlab.com.

Career Coaching Student Expectations

To uphold our refund policy, we expect a firm commitment from students who are interested in finding a new job after the program. Here are our expectations:

  • You must send weekly progress updates to your Career Coach.
  • Promptly schedule sessions and respond to communications from your Coach. Not completing at least 6 sessions in three months disqualifies you from the guarantee.
  • You’ll meet with your Career Coach to strategize a plan, which may include improving your portfolio, completing additional project work, or conducting offline networking. You must execute on agreed-upon action items according to the schedule you’ve finalized with your Career Coach.
  • Apply to at least 5 jobs per week during the duration of Career Services.
  • Networking is a critical part of your growth as a designer. During your program enrollment, you must attend at least one networking event or meetup in your city per month, and hold informational interviews with at least two working designers (outside of the Designlab platform).

Additional Details

The following applies for students starting in the April 2017 cohort and beyond:

  • You must be located within commuting distance of a shortlist of the following cities, or be willing to relocate for work. We cannot guarantee remote work.

US Cities

  • Atlanta, GA
  • Austin, TX
  • Boston, MA
  • Boulder, CO
  • Chicago, IL
  • Dallas, TX (Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex)
  • Denver, CO
  • Detroit, MI
  • Houston, TX
  • Las Vegas, NV
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Miami, FL
  • Minneapolis-Saint Paul, MN
  • New York, NY
  • Oakland, CA
  • Orlando, FL
  • Philadelphia, PA
  • Phoenix, AZ
  • Portland, OR
  • Raleigh-Durham 'Research Triangle', NC
  • Salt Lake City, UT
  • San Diego, CA
  • San Francisco, CA
  • Seattle, WA
  • Tampa, FL
  • Washington DC

Cities Outside the US

  • Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Berlin, Germany
  • London, UK
  • Toronto, Canada
  • Vancouver, Canada
  • You must live in the US and be eligible to work here legally, and be above the age of 21. We’ll provide the same level of Career Coaching and support for international students, but we cannot extend the guarantee.

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