Design of User Experience GCERT

College of Liberal Arts
Graduate certificate

About this program

The Design of User Experience graduate certificate is a 16-credit, online program that prepares professionals to design compelling user interfaces and digital experience. Subject matter areas include but are not limited to user experience design, design thinking, research methods, content strategy, and information architecture.

This program:

  • offers a deep understanding of the conceptual and theoretical foundations of user experience Immerses students in the scholarship and best practices of user experience
  • enables students to discover user goals, design prototypes, and conduct multi-faceted user research with sound methods
  • applies design thinking in constructing innovative design solutions
  • adapts various research methods for particular communication challenges
  • provides students with insights on leading and advocating for user experience in organizational contexts

Student outcomes

Students completing the graduate certificate in Design of User Experience will be able to:

  • design and conduct user research in an agile environment
  • conceptualize, build, and evaluate design solutions
  • analyze and communicate research findings to design team
  • articulate multidisciplinary concepts of user experience
  • synthesize the cognitive, emotional, and social dimensions of user experience
  • assess scholarship in user experience
  • appreciate and advocate for user experience in product design, business decisions, and change making

Gainful Employment Disclosure

Gainful employment programs are those "that prepare students for gainful employment in a recognized occupation." Public institutions are required to report this information for all undergraduate and graduate programs that are Title IV eligible and that lead to certificates, diplomas, graduate certificates or specialist awards. Degree programs at all levels are not considered to be gainful employment programs.

Enrolling in this program

Program eligibility requirements

  • Bachelor's degree earned from an accredited institution (or a foreign equivalent)
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher
  • Basic digital literacy

Because this is not a degree-granting program, applications from international students studying on an F-1 student visa will not be accepted. However, international students may complete the certificate online without traveling to the United States. In such cases, international students must meet the criteria above and present evidence of language proficiency. We accept TOEFL scores of at least 550 (PBT) or 213 (CBT) or 80 (IBT) and IELTS scores of at least 6.0.

Application instructions

Deadlines

Jun 30 - Fall semester
Nov 15 - Spring semester
Mar 30 - Summer semester

Application deadlines are general guidelines only. Incomplete applications will roll forward to the next semester for a total of three semesters, after which you must re-apply if your file is still incomplete. Applications for admission are not considered until all requirements are met and fees received.
International students may complete the certificate online without traveling to the United States. In such cases, international students must meet the admission criteria and present evidence of language proficiency. We accept TOEFL scores of at least 550 (PBT) or 213 (CBT) or 80 (IBT) and IELTS scores of at least 6.0. Because this is not a degree-granting program, applications from international students studying on an F-1 student visa will not be accepted.

Application packet

All application materials become the property of Metropolitan State University and are not returned. To be considered for full admission you must submit all parts of the application packet:

Part one

  • Online Graduate Programs Application. Please note you will need a Minnesota State StarID to complete the application. If you don't have a StarID, you will create one at the beginning of the application.
    • If you do not have or choose not to provide your Social Security number (SSN) you will need to follow the No SSN instructions to activate your StarID.
    • If you encounter difficulty with the online application, email graduate.studies@metrostate.edu
    • You are strongly encouraged to use the online application, but if you'd rather use the paper application, fill out the graduate application form and mail it to the Graduate Studies Office at the address below.
  • Non-refundable Application Fee can be paid through online application
    • Current fee of $20 is waived for graduates of Metropolitan State University.
    • Pay online using the online application or send a check with the paper application.
  • Official Transcripts
    • Must show a baccalaureate degree or equivalent earned from a regionally accredited institution with grade-point average or narrative description describing courses completed and minimum 2.5 cumulative GPA.
    • Official transcripts verifying a bachelor's degree earned from an accredited institution.
    • All transcripts from non-U.S. schools must be evaluated (course-by-course) by either ECE (preferred) or WES.
    • Electronic transcripts should be sent to graduate.studies@metrostate.edu.
    • Paper transcripts should be sent directly from the sending institution (preferred).

Part two

If you've applied online, you can login to the Applicant Portal using your StarID and password to upload remaining documents and check on the status of your application. To be considered for admission you must submit the following:

  • Current Resume
    • One year of full-time professional work experience is preferred; however, volunteer experience can be accepted in lieu of work experience.
    • Essay of professional goals (no more than two pages)

Submit Part Two materials to the School of Communications, Writing and the Arts at the address below.

School of Communications, Writing, and the Arts
Metropolitan State University
1380 Energy Lane, Suite 205
Saint Paul, MN 55108

Program requirements

Academic Standing

You must maintain satisfactory academic progress to remain in the certificate program.
Only courses for which you receive a letter grade of C (2.0) or better count toward certificate requirements; and a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 is required for graduation. If you receive a letter grade of C+ or below in any graduate course, you will be placed on academic probation. If you receive a letter grade of C+ or below in two courses, or if your cumulative GPA is below 3.0 for two consecutive semesters, you will be dismissed from the graduate certificate program.

If you have been dismissed from the program for unsatisfactory academic progress, you may apply for readmission after one calendar year has passed. To reapply, submit an updated resume and a letter to the Design of User Experience Graduate Certificate Program indicating what circumstances have changed and how you plan to successfully complete the program. The program faculty review your request and respond in writing.

Only courses in which you receive a letter grade are applied toward your certificate. The option of a competence/no competence with a narrative transcript is not available.
Appeal of Unsatisfactory Academic Progress Removals from the Program

If you are removed from the program for unsatisfactory academic progress, you may appeal the removal to the College of Liberal Arts dean. The appeal must be in writing, and it must provide specific grounds for the appeal. The appeal is due to the dean within 30 days of the date of the letter notifying you of the decision to remove you from the program. The dean has 30 days to respond, in writing, to the appeal. Appeals received after 30 days will not be considered.
Time to Completion

You have two years from your first semester of graduate study to complete your certificate program requirements. You may request an extension of the time limit by writing to the Design of User Experience Graduate Certificate Program. Such requests must be received prior to the expiration of the time limit. Requests for extensions should include your reason(s) for requesting the extension, a summary of your plan to finish graduation requirements, and a specific date for the extension to expire. Extension decisions are made by the certificate program faculty and are not automatic.
Reactivating into the Program

If you are a student in good academic standing who has not registered for courses for three or more consecutive semesters, you must apply to reactivate into the certificate program. To reactivate, submit an updated resume and a letter to the Design of User Experience Graduate Certificate Program expressing a desire to reactivate into the program. The faculty review your request and respond in writing, specifying certificate completion requirements and deadline for completion. You may be required to satisfy certificate requirements in force at the time of reactivation, even if those requirements differ from those in force at the time of original admission to the certificate program.

Course requirements

Requirements (16 credits)

Required courses (12 credits)

WRIT 574G Usability and User Experience

4 credits

This course focuses on usability and user experience for technical and information products. Students learn concepts, principles, processes, and methods of usability and user experience. Students work in teams and conduct a usability study systematically to improve an information product. Topics also include usability in business and organizational settings, usability workflow and governance. Students will also interact with user experience professionals.

Full course description for Usability and User Experience

WRIT 677 User Research

4 credits

This course introduces students to designing, conducting, communicating, and evaluating user research. Students learn to form and investigate a research question, examine existing literature, use a wide array of methods, conduct effective user research, make design recommendations, and communicate research findings.

Full course description for User Research

Elective (4 credits)

Choose one of the below

MIS 671 Problem Formulation and Data Presentation

4 credits

This course provides students with techniques and strategies to work on complex business problems while exercising strong critical thinking skills. It also helps them develop potential solutions. This course then focuses on how to take the results of students' professional work and present complex material in a manner that helps them clearly explain and market their information.

Full course description for Problem Formulation and Data Presentation

MKTG 600 Marketing Management

4 credits

This course examines activities through which organizations provide goods and services to serve the needs of the marketplace. Some of the topics included are analysis of internal and external factors of an organization that contribute to a successful marketing campaign, consumer behavior, positioning, , setting marketing objectives, designing marketing strategies and tactics, integrated marketing communications, pricing, and elasticity of demand.

Full course description for Marketing Management

MKTG 642 Design and Management of Advertising Programs

4 credits

Management of advertising programs requires that good use be made of electronic and print media, direct mail, public relations, promotions and personal sales power in achieving organizational goals. Topics include audience analysis, creative strategies, advertisement production, computer graphics, trade shows, advertising laws and the ethics of advertising communications. Special attention is given to multicultural factors in designing advertising campaigns.

Full course description for Design and Management of Advertising Programs