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PROGRAM OVERVIEW

Designlab offers two tracks for students to choose from.

Full-time Track (40 hours/week)

  • The program takes about 15 weeks
  • Average of ~2 60-minute mentor sessions a week (total of 26 mentor sessions)
  • Weekly Group Crits (12 mandatory)
  • 18 30-minute Career Coach sessions during Career Services

Part-time Track (20 hours/week)

  • The program takes about 28 weeks
  • Average of 1 mentor session a week (total of 26 mentor sessions)
  • Weekly Group Crits (22 mandatory)
  • 18 30-minute Career Coach sessions during Career Services

REFUND/CANCELLATION POLICY

  • You have the right to cancel your enrollment at any time. You must contact Designlab via email to cancel your enrollment.
  • You can cancel the course within the first two weeks for any reason and receive a full refund for all payments made. After this two-week period, the $399 USD deposit becomes non-refundable (except for a refund granted in accordance with the Tuition Reimbursement Policy as described below).
  • If you cancel your enrollment at any time after the two-week period, Designlab will issue a pro­rated refund for the unearned portion of the tuition, less the non­refundable deposit fee.

GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS

UX Academy is a rigorous academic program. In order to graduate, you must meet the following requirements.

1. Meet academic requirements

Complete all the assigned coursework each week

You must complete 100% of the assigned readings & projects with mentor approval according to the course schedule, and submit iterations for projects based on mentor feedback.

Pass the following skills checkpoints:

  • Objective project assessments for each project according to a skills rubric. You are responsible for ensuring all of your coursework is approved by your mentor.
  • Two Phase 1 formal checkpoints:
    • A mid-phase Progress Report, where your mentor will evaluate your course progress and skills development
    • 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 required quality by the end of Phase 1, you will be asked to repeat work and develop your skills before moving on to Phase 2.
  • A formal portfolio review at the end of Phase 2 (known as the “Panel Review”). You must pass this review in order to graduate from the program and enter Career Services. If you do not wish to enter Career Services, you must still pass the review in order to graduate.
    • In the case that your portfolio does not pass the review, you will be allotted additional time and mentor sessions to prep and polish your portfolio. You will remain in this prep phase until you and your mentor determine you are ready to submit for another review.

2. Stay on track and graduate in a timely manner

You may not fall more than 40 hours behind the course schedule.

Pausing

In case special circumstances come up (travel, medical emergencies, etc.), we allow you up to two pauses, each one week long, to use at your discretion throughout the course. During a pause, you will have access to your coursework, but you won’t be able to schedule mentor sessions. Students who wish to pause for more than two weeks total must withdraw from the course, receive a pro-rated refund, and re-apply to enter the program in a future cohort.

3. Attend mentor sessions

You must attend all of your 1-on-1 mentor sessions, meeting with your mentor regularly according to the program schedule (refer to Program Overview above).

Out of respect for your mentor’s time, if you need to cancel or reschedule a session, you must give your mentor at least 24 hours notice. Failure to do so will result in the session being forfeited and counted towards your session limit with that mentor (for the purposes of this graduation requirement, a forfeited session counts as an attended session). You may forfeit no more than two sessions during the program.

4. Attend & participate in weekly Group Crits

You must attend the minimum number of Group Crits specified in the Program Overview above.

Some of your Group Crit session requirements may be excused by Designlab, for example in the case of certain holidays. In the case that Group Crits are specified as optional for a certain time period, you would not be required to make up those sessions.

5. Meet community and academic standards

  • Inappropriate or abusive behavior towards mentors, fellow students, or Designlab staff is unacceptable.
  • We do not tolerate any plagiarism or academic misconduct.

We reserve the right to withdraw you from UX Academy at any point throughout the duration of the program. Reasons for withdrawal include, but are not limited to, failing to meet any of the requirements outlined above.

CAREER SERVICES REQUIREMENTS

All students must meet minimum activity requirements to stay enrolled in Career Services. If you do not meet these minimum requirements, your enrollment status will be marked as Inactive and you may be removed from the program.

  • Respond to all Career Coach and Designlab communications within 2 business days.
  • Attend weekly Career Coach sessions. You must attend Coach sessions every week (unless your Coach is unavailable for any reason).
  • Stay active in Career Services. In order to maintain current status in Career Services, you must attend one Coach session each week and complete the required curriculum each week. If you do not meet these requirements for 2 or more weeks, your account will be flagged as Inactive and you will receive a warning. If your account goes Inactive a second time, you may be removed from Career Services.
  • Uphold Career Services Code of Conduct. Any violation of the conduct policy is grounds for removal from the Designlab platform and community.

As long as you have sessions remaining and have been meeting all other requirements (including activity requirements), you can meet with your Coach throughout the duration of Career Services (6 months post-graduation). Unused sessions expire at the end of Career Services.

TUITION REIMBURSEMENT POLICY

This policy is designed to support your entry into the design field with rigorous requirements that have led to candidate success. You may be eligible for a tuition reimbursement if you are unable to receive a qualifying job offer within 6 months of completing UX Academy, provided you satisfy all requirements below. No exceptions to this policy are granted for any purpose.

If you receive an offer of any type, paid or unpaid, you must let us know by completing the “I’m Hired” form which you will find on your student dashboard. Any paid design role with >20 hours/week for 4 or more weeks of work will count as a qualifying offer, rendering the reimbursement null and void. Failure to report a qualifying offer is a breach of the Career Services Code of Conduct.

All active students receive the full UX Academy and Career Services support and experience, regardless of their eligibility for the Tuition Reimbursement Policy. Many students are ineligible from the outset, or become ineligible during the program, however this has no effect on their ability to complete the program and land a job in the field.

To request your reimbursement

You must submit your tuition reimbursement request in writing to hello@trydesignlab.com not more than 9 months after starting Career Services. You must provide evidence that you fulfill all the eligibility requirements listed by completing and attaching a copy of the tuition reimbursement checklist below.

Please note, in order to remain eligible for tuition reimbursement you must meet all graduation and Career Services requirements, which are included again for convenience in the comprehensive checklist below. All of the below requirements must be completed before requesting the reimbursement; any proof/evidence submitted after the fact is inadmissible.

Tuition Reimbursement Checklist

General

  • You are over 21 years of age
  • You are legally able to work in your target city or cities
  • You live within commuting distance (90 minutes) of your target city
  • Your target work city is on our list of eligible cities (see list below)

UX Academy

  • You must complete 100% of required weekly readings and have projects completed and mentor approved

    • This includes a formal review at the end of phase 1 of UX Academy where your mentor will ascertain your overall development and ability to proceed to Phase 2. If your work does not meet the required quality by the end of Phase 1, you will be asked to repeat work and develop your skills before moving on to Phase 2.
  • You need to make sure that all mentor suggested iterations are re-submitted and approved
  • You must not fall behind more than 40 hours at any point during the course or become inactive at any point
  • You cannot take more than 2 pauses and each pause may not exceed 1 week

    • In case special circumstances come up (travel, medical emergencies, etc.), we allow you up to two pauses, each one week long, to use at your discretion throughout the course. During a pause, you will have access to your coursework, but you won’t be able to schedule mentor sessions.
  • You must attend all mentor sessions in Phase 1 and Phase 2

    • Out of respect for your mentor’s time, if you need to cancel or reschedule a session, you must give your mentor at least 24 hours notice. Failure to do so will result in the session being forfeited and counted towards your session limit with that mentor (for the purposes of this tuition reimbursement requirement, a forfeited session does not count as an attended session).
  • You must attend the minimum number of weekly Group Crit sessions: 12 in the full-time track and 22 in the part-time track.

Graduating UX Academy

  • You must submit your final portfolio for panel review no later than 4 weeks after the Scheduled Completion Date listed at the top of your UX Academy Student Agreement.

    • If there are any Designlab-sponsored break periods (e.g. Winter Holiday break), then for the purposes of this requirement, the Scheduled Completion Date will be adjusted by the official duration of the break(s).
    • You must pass this review in order to graduate from the program and enter Career Services. If you do not wish to enter Career Services, you must still pass the review in order to graduate.
  • You must pass portfolio review within 8 weeks of your first submission

    • If there are any Designlab-sponsored break periods (e.g. Winter Holiday break), then for the purposes of this requirement, the 8 week period will be increased by the official duration of the break(s).
    • In the case that your portfolio does not pass the review, you will be allotted additional time and mentor sessions to prep and polish your portfolio. You will remain in this prep phase until you and your mentor determine you are ready to submit for another review. If this process takes longer than 8 weeks, you will no longer be eligible for tuition reimbursement.

Career Services

  • To maintain an active status in Career Services, you must:

    • Start Career Services immediately after graduation.
    • Work through Career Services without taking any pauses.
    • Attend all weekly Career Services sessions with no forfeited sessions.
    • Respond to all Career Coach and Designlab staff communications within 2 business days.
    • Complete 100% of required weekly readings and have required weekly projects completed and mentor approved.
  • To adequately track your job search, you must:

    • Set up your Huntr account. When you start Career Services, you’ll receive an invitation to set up your job hunting board. Accept the invite, set up your account, and share your board with your Career Coach.
    • Keep your Huntr Board updated weekly and apply to at least 5 jobs per week (at least 3 in your target work city, up to 2 remote), starting in Week 3 of Career Services at the latest.
    • At least 5 jobs per week must be for generalist positions (e.g. job titles such as UX Designer, UX/UI Designer, or Product Designer). Any jobs tracked for specialized roles (e.g. job titles such as UX Researcher, UX Strategist, UX Analyst, etc…) do not count toward the weekly 5-job minimum.
    • If you receive an offer of any type, paid or unpaid, you must let us know by completing the “I’m Hired” form which you will find on your student dashboard. Any paid design role with >20 hours/week for 4 or more weeks of work will count as a qualifying offer, rendering the reimbursement null and void. Failure to report a qualifying offer is a breach of the Career Services Code of Conduct.
  • To develop your skills during the job search, you must:

    • Complete all assigned work in Career Services, each week. There are 2 types of projects in Career Services: regular projects, and bonus projects (Design Challenges). Design Challenges are not required. They are meant to help you keep practicing, and you should speak with your Coach about which ones you and they find useful for your development. Regular design projects and any relevant design challenges should be submitted each week.
    • If you get a freelance project, internship, placement through the Designlab Partnerships program, or part-time UX/UI or Product design role, this will take the place of all design curriculum for the duration of the role. Tracking work to meet the weekly requirement is up to the student and, if requested, you must successfully prove that the work was completed during the weeks you do not complete the design curriculum.
    • You must attend a minimum of 1 relevant networking event per month AND conduct 1 informational interview each month. These can be completed either in person (in one of your target job hunting cities) or virtually.

Additional notes

The Tuition Reimbursement Policy does not apply to students who have been convicted of a felony in the last seven years.

Eligible Cities Checklist:

US Cities:
  • Atlanta, GA
  • Austin, TX
  • Boston, MA
  • Boulder, CO
  • Chicago, IL
  • Dallas, TX (Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex)
  • Denver, CO
  • Detroit, MI
  • Houston, TX
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Minneapolis-Saint Paul, MN
  • New York, NY
  • Oakland, CA
  • Philadelphia, PA
  • Raleigh-Durham 'Research Triangle', NC
  • San Diego, CA
  • San Francisco, CA
  • Seattle, WA
  • Washington DC
Non-US Cities:
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Berlin, Germany
  • London, UK
  • Toronto, Canada
  • Vancouver, Canada
  • Shenzen, China
  • Dublin, Ireland
  • Paris, France
  • Sao Paulo, Brazil
  • Singapore
  • Sydney, Australia
  • Hong Kong
  • Melbourne, Australia
  • Cape Town, South Africa

Outcome Data

By participating in the UX Academy program, you are agreeing to share your outcome data with us when we request it. Personal information will be kept confidential but may be used in outcome reporting.

Last Updated: July 12, 2021