UX Camp Spring 2024

UX Camp Spring 2024

Explore the UX Shift_
at UX Camp Spring 2024
Saturday, May 18th, 2024 at 10am Central!

UX Camp Spring brings together creative minds for a day filled with fresh insights, engaging discussions, and hands-on experiences. This vibrant event offers something for everyone, from the budding UX designer to the experienced researcher.

Through community-led presentations and powerful keynotes, participants can connect with peers, learn from experts, and gain a fresh perspective on UX design. Plus, with flexible pricing and “Need 1, Take 1” passes, no one needs to miss out! Join us and fuel your creative spark!

And it happens from where ever you are—we’re serving up 2 awesome keynotes that bookend up to 8 really great presentations! This is a 1-day conference that delivers great UX content at a price that lets anyone attend, from anywhere.

Interested in getting on a virtual stage?
Submit your presentation idea!

We continue to provide a stage with inclusive continuing education that is great for our community. Don’t miss out–join us and expand your User Experience horizons–and don’t worry: we record the sessions so you can revisit them later.

And we’ll have swag! We’re partnering with Nerditees (again!) to bring you some cool UX-themed gear. Stay tuned! 

Deciphering Shift_: When Change Sparks New Perspectives

The “Shift_” theme for UX Camp Spring 2024 embodies the dynamic transformation within the UX design field, emphasizing evolution, empathy, and enhanced user experiences. It reflects a proactive approach to embracing changes, leveraging diverse perspectives, and pushing the boundaries of conventional design practices. This theme encourages a forward-thinking mindset, highlighting the importance of adaptability and innovation in creating impactful user-centered solutions in an ever-evolving digital landscape.

Embrace the shift with us; expand your horizons and recalibrate your understanding of user experience design.

 

Cool Blue Unisex/Men’s “SHIFT_” T-Shirt: Dive into the matrix of UX design with our Cool Blue “SHIFT_” Tee! Crafted for the creators who toggle between tabs like pros and dream in wireframes, this shirt is more than just a garment—it’s your new uniform in the crusade for unparalleled user experiences. The front boasts the “SHIFT_” mantra in bold, symbolizing your readiness to embrace change and disrupt the digital domain. Spin around to reveal a rallying cry on the back, a whispered chant for the changemakers. Screen printed with precision on a soft, breathable canvas, this tee is a must-have talisman for every design dojo.

Navy Ladies “SHIFT_” T-Shirt: Set sail on the sea of pixels with our Navy Ladies “SHIFT_” Tee! Tailored for the shapeshifters of UX design, this shirt embodies the essence of change with its minimalist, powerful statement. Its elegant navy hue echoes the depth of the ocean, reminding you that the user’s journey is vast and full of discovery. Each stitch is a pixel, and every thread weaves together a story of transformation and innovation. This isn’t just a t-shirt; it’s a badge of honor for the designers who navigate the waves of user needs with grace and agility.

Royal and Tan Distressed “SHIFT_” Hat: Cap off your UX uniform with our Royal and Tan Distressed “SHIFT_” Hat! For the trailblazers who think outside the box and design outside the grid, this hat is your crown. The distressed look isn’t just for style—it’s a nod to the brainstorming sessions, the late-night testing, and every ‘Aha!’ moment that’s scribbled on a sticky note. The embroidered “SHIFT_” patch is a pledge to remain at the forefront of innovation, making it the perfect headgear for those ready to lead the charge in redefining human-digital interaction.

Each piece of this collection is a tribute to the UX Camp Spring 2024 and its vanguard of visionary designers. So wear it proudly, because in the world of design, you’re not just shifting perspectives—you’re setting the bar!

Each swag item purchased adds to our pool of “Need 1, Take 1” passes that are available to anyone who has a need–no questions asked.

Event Details
Tickets
$7
Early Bird Ticket

Only 20 tickets at this price!

$13.50
General Admission

Only $13.50! An outstanding bargain!

Free
Pay What You Can

Any contribution is appreciated.

Free
Need 1, Take 1

For anyone with a need. Please join!

Speakers
Lori Baker
Lori Baker
Senior User Experience Consultant
Lori has extensive experience in finding creative solutions to client needs that also meet user needs through extensive research and cross- department collaboration.
Shannon Soper
Shannon Soper
Senior Product Designer
Freelance
Shannon Soper, Senior Product Designer, mentor, and former Head of Learning, brings 10+ years of experience in leadership and team development.
Phillip Hunter
Phillip Hunter
Senior Director, Product Design
O'Reilly Media
Phillip figured out in 2023 that he was supposed to be a designer after all. Fortunately, even while uncertain, he worked in interesting spaces like some of the earliest commercial conversational NLU/NLP applications, nurturing enterprise services toward becoming enjoyable tools, and applying analytics to UX design decisions.
Tiziana Dagostino
Tiziana Dagostino
UX Psychologist
tdagdesign
Tiziana is a UX Psychologist, with more than 20 years of experience in the design industry. She combines psychological insights with good UX/UI practices and a solid ethical framework to create inclusive designs that will persuade without manipulation or dirty tricks. She strongly believes that ethical design can change the world for the better. She is a member of the Ethical Design Network and maintains its blog.
Stuart Thursby
Stuart Thursby
Creative Director / Art Director
Freelance
Stuart is a Creative Director based in Toronto with a 15-year track record of building and leading teams alongside rolling up his sleeves and getting the work done. His creative career has blended the hell out of the concepts and craft of advertising, digital, experiential, and the web, working at some of the best shops around — BBDO, Cossette, Proximity, Array of Stars, FCB/SIX, Teehan+Lax, Trajectory, DDB, DARE, Edelman, and many others, plus 4+ years owning and running Stack.
Meena Kothandaraman
Meena Kothandaraman
Experience Strategist
twig+fish
With 30 years of experience, Meena has consulted to emphasize the strategic value and positioning of qualitative research in the design of product, space and service.
Carmen Bocanegra
Carmen Bocanegra
Director of Design and Research
Truss
Over the past decade, Carmen has led teams through the process of research, strategy, and design.
Gail Swanson
Gail Swanson
CX Design Leader
FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency)
Gail Swanson helps people solve product and service problems without blowing themselves up. Throughout her design career across many industries, she’s been dedicated to helping talented folks be effective at their jobs. Gail built the strategy practice at 18F, and has returned to public service improving the experience of disaster survivors as they recover and rebuild. Gail speaks and writes about all manners of design, strategy, and digital innovation.
Jason Cranford Teague
Jason Cranford Teague
Founder / Advisor
CranfordTeague / University of Richmond's Customer Experience Program
Jason is a creative strategist, writer, and speaker who has written numerous books and articles about digital design and creative development. His books include the best selling CSS Visual Quickstart Guide and Final Cut Pro and the Art of Filmmaking.
Lindsey Latiolais
Lindsey Latiolais
Senior Product Manager, Lead Generation Pool
Neighborhoods.com
Lindsey is a former UX Researcher with over 10 years in the field, and most recently a former Product Manager with about a year and a half of experience. After severely burning out and losing her job a year and a half ago, she's been on a path of recovery and self-discovery, finding new passions and drives in a completely new mental landscape.
Schedule

We'll open the doors a little early and let folks in. Sometimes, we have surprises, sometimes, we play music, sometimes it's a little quiet. Get there a little early to be ready for kick-off!

Design Safety: A Trauma-Informed User Research Guide

Throughout civic tech, people are striving to increase engagement with vulnerable and underserved communities, and in private industry, product teams are including more diverse pools of participants in their user research. These inclusion strategies mean that researchers will undoubtedly work with people who are living with the impact of trauma, which presents risk of causing additional harm. With attention and tools, user researchers can minimize this risk to vulnerable participants and improve the experience for everyone involved.

Tactics such as content warnings and informed consent help people protect themselves, and other tools are available to help us do user research ethically.Combining the principles of a trauma informed approach (created by SAMHSA), an ethical research framework, and a little creativity, sets us properly on a path to learning safely. Join us to learn how to apply trauma informed principles to user research, and get tools to use in your own research design.

This session includes:
• An introduction to the effects of trauma and who it impacts
• What is trauma informed user research
• How to use the ethical researcher checklist and other tools to improve your user research with all participants

Gail Swanson

Gail Swanson helps people solve product and service problems without blowing themselves up. Throughout her design career across many industries, she’s been dedicated to helping talented folks be effective at their jobs. Gail built the strategy practice at 18F, and has returned to public service improving the experience of disaster survivors as they recover and rebuild. Gail speaks and writes about all manners of design, strategy, and digital innovation.

For more, keep up with Gail at gailswanson.us  

Building an Inclusive Research Practice

For too long, traditional research methodologies have been narrowly focused, often sidelining the full spectrum of human diversity. This has predominantly served a homogeneous audience, overlooking the vast experiences that define our global community.

In this session, Lori Baker will take us beyond the surface of inclusivity in research. Drawing from her extensive experience and transformative work with diverse clients, Lori will detail the challenges of traditional methodologies and how they can be reimagined. She will share specific strategies and tools she has developed to ensure research practices are truly inclusive, covering aspects such as engaging underrepresented groups, challenging biases, and designing studies that reflect a broader human experience.

Attendees will leave equipped with practical insights and actionable steps to broaden the scope of their research methodologies, making them more equitable and representative of the world we live in. Join Lori in redefining the boundaries of inclusivity in research, making it a cornerstone of your practice.

Lori Baker

Lori has extensive experience in finding creative solutions to client needs that also meet user needs through extensive research and cross- department collaboration.

Her ability to foster collaboration paired with her focus on user needs has helped guide a number of successful projects for new and existing systems.

Age & Tech: Experience Need Not Apply

At the heart of the tech design industry is a worm in the bud: old people are not allowed. We see the stories every day, both explicitly and implicitly: “Tech is a young persons game.” It’s not that anyone would say it out-loud; well almost nobody. Mark Zuckerberg has been quoted as saying, ”Young people are just smarter,” but that was in 2007 when he was 23. One wonders how he feels about it now that he is rapidly approaching 40?

In this session I will explore the uncomfortable but vital topic of how ageism is an unspoken factor in hiring and advancement in the design industry, providing research and statistics on where we stand now. I’ll discuss some of the common “reasons” given for not hiring experienced designers, the benefits experience can offer in a constantly evolving and changing profession, and how ageism becomes a negative multiplier when combined with sexism and racism, further preventing diversity in an already homogeneous profession.

More importantly, I want to engage in a discussion with the audience to hear their experiences with ageism, how other forms of discrimination have compounded the problem for them, and consider paths forward.

Jason Cranford Teague

Jason is a Web pioneer having designed the first Web based publication in 1994. In the thirty years since, he has worked on numerous products applying creative problem solving techniques to find solutions that innovate and satisfy. In addition to having written books and articles on digital media design, he is a sought after international speaker, worked with the W3C to establish Web design standards, taught UX Design at Drexel University, and is currently an advisor to the University of Richmond’s Customer Experience Program.

Jason recently started a digital strategy consulting agency — CranfordTeague.com — focusing on improving educational outcomes by creating digital experiences to meet students’ individual needs for learning.

He and his wife live in beautiful Greensboro, NC, USA. They are the parents to two children and two cats. In addition to his consulting work, Jason is the author of the children’s book Yuri Was Very Brave (www.yuribrave.com) about Yuri Gagarin, the first human in space.

Beyond Extraction: Reframing UX Research Into Long-term Relationships and Strategic Change Management

UX research is more than collecting data and gathering information–it’s a foundational tool to build relationships with people who are impacted by and who develop products and services. Because of this, it can be a method to guide strategic change within our organizations. When we reframe UX research as a pivotal element in building deep connections and trust, we shift research from being transactional to a longer term partnership that is closely aligned with user needs and organizational objectives.

We need to include non-researchers in the research process; this is how we empower teams with diverse viewpoints to develop a holistic understanding of a user ecosystem. Side by side with product managers, engineers, and designers, we continuously learn together, paving a way for a more engaged, informed, and collaborative culture.

This approach not only elevates UX research as a key component of change management—through ongoing alignment, adoption, and adaptation—but also mirrors the internal dynamics necessary for companies facing organizational restructuring, policy updates, and growth challenges.

With practical examples, this session will explore:

- Strategies for involving non-research stakeholders in the UX research process, enhancing cross-functional collaboration.
- Techniques for establishing and maintaining trust and credibility among internal and external team members, and fostering an open communication culture.
- The role of UX research in facilitating organizational change, with actionable insights for applying these principles to internal company transformations.

You will leave this session with some tools to start building lasting relationships through UX research, both within your teams and with users and stakeholders; ultimately supporting meaningful change across product/service development and your organization.

Carmen Bocanegra

Since she first learned to talk, Carmen has asked a lot of questions. This led to a desire to understand the how/why/what behind almost everything, a love of experimentation, and academic pursuit of science. She ended up working in an advertising agency in the digital production department because it sounded fun and different than anything she had done before.

Over the past decade, Carmen has led teams of colleagues, stakeholders, and clients through the process of discovery, framing, research, strategy, and design at startups, consultancies, and in-house teams. She’s deeply passionate about improving how teams work together, understanding impact, and ensuring that our language, code, and practices are inclusive and accessible to all.

She currently lives in North Carolina with her spouse and dog and works in civic tech as a Director of Federal Portfolios, Health and Human Services at Truss.

15 minuted break.

First Principles, UX Quality, and a New Design Spirit

The path of the commercial software experience design profession has become much more murky and uncertain that nearly anyone anticipated. Today requires a new way of thinking about what we do, realizing that what led to our previous success will not lead us to more of it. This is not an uncommon human scenario, though.

Through some tough love for ourselves and going even deeper on what we actually do when we design, we’ll forge ahead and emerge better and stronger from this painful period. It might not be as hard as we think, either.

Phillip Hunter

Phillip figured out in 2023 that he was supposed to be a designer after all. Fortunately, even while uncertain, he worked in interesting spaces like some of the earliest commercial conversational NLU/NLP applications, nurturing enterprise services toward becoming enjoyable tools, and applying analytics to UX design decisions.

Challenging the Concept of “Human-Centered”: It’s Time for a Rethink

Since the beginning of experience design, we have been focused on being human-centered for nearly every product, service and interface created.

What does human-centered really mean, and do we know if we achieve that as a goal when designing an experience?

At an organizational-level, practitioners must first agree on an aligned definition of “human-centered”, as it relates to the product/service/offering being put out to the world. What contributes to an experience being considered as human-centered? How close to that definition must products be for them to be considered truly “human-centered”? Without a clear and shared definition of human-centeredness, it is impossible to measure how “well” we achieve it within an organization.

Though this has long been a concept that is emphasized in theory – in practice, this moment of rethinking is imperative for multiple reasons. The design of experiences is at a tipping point. Can we afford to only be human-centered, and that too, with a poorly defined understanding of what constitutes the concept in the first place?

It is time to deconstruct what human-centered really means and consider the potential of being “human-calibrated” instead. In a world where we must be more responsible given truths about the environment and the climate, humans are only one part of the equation.

Meena Kothandaraman

With 30 years of experience, Meena has consulted to emphasize the strategic value and positioning of qualitative research in the design of product, space and service. Meena is fascinated by the complexity of human behavior, and applies a credible, structured and transparent approach to integrating human stories and anecdotes into mainstream processes. This ensures that research activities provide the best service to the organization, and that learning objectives are addressed to maximize potential.

Meena is a founding member of twig+fish, a research and strategy practice based in Boston, MA, that espouses these research beliefs, while maintaining a utopic work-life balance. She is also a key Lecturer in the Bentley University Human Factors and Information Design (HFID) graduate program. Over her 20-year tenure, her capstone qualitative research course has guided now-leading practitioners to integrating meaningful and successful research practices.

She holds an M.S. in Information Resources Management from Syracuse University and a B.Com . in MIS from the University of Ottawa, Canada. Meena is always inspired in her work by her other passions, namely performing as a South-Indian Classical Violinist, pursuing culinary arts through a cooking show, and staying up to date with her two teenager interests!

For more, keep up with Meena on Twitter as @meena_ko.

How to Start, Grow, and Close an Agency in Under 5 Years

After a decade spent working at some of the best agencies around (BBDO, Cossette, DDB, FCB/SIX, Proximity, Teehan+Lax, and more), I started my own boutique shop, Stack Creative.

After 4 years, about 50-odd website projects, numerous advertising campaign and branding projects, and infinite lessons learned, I decided to wind things down in order to focus on the two parts of the business I love the most versus wearing all the hats: the work, and the people.

In this talk, I will go through the top 10 lessons learned in those 4 years, offering a different and more personal take on agency/studio entrepreneurship than just the highs and lows. I would allow 10 minutes for Q&A as well.

Stuart Thursby

Stuart is a Creative Director based in Toronto with a 15-year track record of building and leading teams alongside rolling up his sleeves and getting the work done.

His creative career has blended the hell out of the concepts and craft of advertising, digital, experiential, and the web, working at some of the best shops around — BBDO, Cossette, Proximity, Array of Stars, FCB/SIX, Teehan+Lax, Trajectory, DDB, DARE, Edelman, and many others, plus 4+ years owning and running Stack.

Stuart’s core belief is that the best creative isn’t a one-off, but that magical mix of a spark of an idea that’s got enough legs to work across the board. That’s why he’s charted the path he has to date, refusing to stick to one media or method or agency size, but learning from all of them.

Burn Out – Recognizing and Recovering

“Burnout” is a common buzzword these days, but what can it really look and feel like? How do you know it’s happening and how do you pull out of it? It’s not nearly as linear and clearcut as it sounds in the media.

A (former) UX Researcher/Product Manager will discuss her experiences with burnout to help others recognize the signs, find new ways to help them recover, or just make those experiencing it not feel so alone. This story doesn’t have a happy ending (yet?), but it’s also not a tragedy. Maybe the wreckage can be used to make something new and, if not beautiful, at least useful.

Lindsey Latiolais

Lindsey is a former UX Researcher with over 10 years in the field, and most recently a former Product Manager with about a year and a half of experience. After severely burning out and losing her job a year and a half ago, she’s been on a path of recovery and self-discovery, finding new passions and drives in a completely new mental landscape.

When not hanging out at her home in Bend, OR, Lindsey can be found at the local dog park with her 2 rescue pups, cosplaying at a fan convention, or scuba diving somewhere tropical. Though she doesn’t post much, feel free to reach out to her @coydahlia on Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin, or Discord if you want to chat.

Design Psychology: Helping People Make Better Choices for Themselves and the Planet

We face thousands of choices everyday: most of them are inconsequential, but others can have very serious and even detrimental outcomes. We have limited mental capacities and get easily overwhelmed, so we often use mental shortcuts or heuristics to help us. Most of the time, this is an effective and efficient method, but sometimes it may take us astray. Also, despite what a lot of people think, we are not rational decision makers: emotions are the strongest influence on decision making. This may lead to poor decisions that won’t benefit us or society.

This is where behavioral design comes in. Behavioral design recognizes that people are not always rational, and often they are not aware of their desires and motivations, so it tries to create design that will facilitate optimal decision making. Behavioral design does not mislead or trick: full autonomy and freedom of choice is always respected. We’ll explore tools such as choice architecture, nudges, anchoring and framing, as well as the ethical implication of behavioral design, and how to avoid ethical pitfalls.

Tiziana Dagostino

Tiziana is a UX Psychologist, with more than 20 years of experience in the design industry. She combines psychological insights with good UX/UI practices and a solid ethical framework to create inclusive designs that will persuade without manipulation or dirty tricks. She strongly believes that ethical design can change the world for the better. She is a member of the Ethical Design Network and maintains its blog.

Tiziana is a senior educator, teaching interactive design, UX, front-end and graphic design and more at different secondary institutions. She has a background that includes a degree in graphic design, a master’s in Media Psychology, certificates in Behavioral Design and Ethical Data Science, along with years of design and web development. She is the leader of the San Diego chapter of the Interaction Design Foundation and mentors many young designers.

Unleashing Potential as Design Leaders: The Art of the Warm Demander

As design leaders, we face the challenge of expressing high expectations, showing we believe people can meet those expectations, and tailoring the support they need to progress.

For example, design leaders may need to motivate hesitant employees to conduct user interviews, provide guidance to a teammate who wants to propose a project too large in scope, or untangle persistent misalignment with their own manager.

To face these challenges, we must become “Warm Demanders.” This concept from the world of educational psychology gives us practical strategies to set high standards (be “demanding”), believe in people’s potential (be “warm”), and provide the tailored support they need to thrive.

Drawing on real-world examples, we’ll learn practical strategies to become Warm Demanders:

- The Power of “Why”: Using questions to spark self-reflection and ownership of learning and create a safe environment for sharing and experimenting.
- Tailored Support with Scaffolding: Matching development needs with appropriate resources and gradually removing support as skills strengthen.
- Setting Clear Expectations: Establishing a shared understanding of goals, success criteria, and the level of performance we strive for.

By mastering these practices, you’ll cultivate a culture of high expectations, build trust, and unlock the full creative potential of people you lead.

Shannon Soper

Shannon Soper, Senior Product Designer, mentor, and former Head of Learning, brings 10+ years of experience in leadership and team development. She trained a 250+ sales team to adopt a new methodology as an instructional designer at Instructure, managed an open source community of hundreds of developers as Head of Learning at Gatsby, and has mentored many product designers in conducting their own UX Research at Postman.

Tickets
$7
Early Bird Ticket

Only 20 tickets at this price!

$13.50
General Admission

Only $13.50! An outstanding bargain!

Free
Pay What You Can

Any contribution is appreciated.

Free
Need 1, Take 1

For anyone with a need. Please join!

Event Details
Sponsors
June 2024
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