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Best Online UX/UI Master’s Degree Programs, Jobs, and Salaries

Hezekiah Oluwole - June 01, 2022


The best online UX/UI design master’s degrees will benefit you by expanding your knowledge and skill set. While undergraduate studies can help you get a job, they don’t delve as deeply into advanced UX/UI design concepts.

You’ll become a better artist by learning visual design in an online Master’s Degree in UX/UI Design. It will take you into an intuitive state of use with the computer application. In addition, you earn more when you demonstrate specialized knowledge in the profession and with online programs.

Online UX/UI design master’s degrees make it possible for you to study without quitting your job or traveling long distances every week. This guide will walk you through the best online UX/UI design master’s degrees, along with some of the UX/UI design master’s degree jobs you’ll qualify for after graduating.

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Where Can I Get a UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Online?

You can get a UX/UI master’s degree online at Arizona State University, Brandeis University, and University of Michigan-Dearborn. While many of these graduate programs are not explicitly named Master’s in UX/UI Design, they deal with interactive design and engineering, which encompasses user experience (UX) design and user interface (UI) design.

What Schools Offer the Best UX/UI Design Master’s Degrees?

  • Arizona State University
  • Drexel University
  • Rutgers University
  • University of Memphis, Tennessee
  • University of Michigan-Dearborn

What Are the Admission Requirements for an Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree?

The admission requirements for an online UX/UI design master’s degree program include possession of a bachelor’s degree in any related field, depending on the school’s preference. The school may accept GRE results or a portfolio that proves that you have prior experience if your bachelor’s degree is in another field.

Transcripts are also necessary for an online Master’s Degree in UX/UI Design. Depending on the school, you may have to pay an application fee. Lastly, the school may require letters of recommendation and a minimum GPA score, which varies depending on the institution.

Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • GRE scores
  • Letter of recommendation
  • Portfolio
  • Transcript

How to Get a UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Online

To earn a UX/UI design master’s degree online, you need to complete a number of specified credit hours. These credit hours will be in courses related to interactive design given by experts. Prospective students receive hands-on training and technical skills needed in this advanced degree. Many schools require students to participate in class lectures, practical sessions, and group discussions. Exams and projects may also be part of the program.

As you learn in-depth fundamentals of user experience, you’ll learn the design process and create a design portfolio filled with relevant experience for the job market. You’ll also develop soft skills through an online UX/UI design program. You become a graduate once you have completed your coursework, assignments, and projects with the required grades.

Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Requirements

  • Approximately 30 credits
  • Practical sessions
  • Maintain the required GPA
  • Exams
  • Group discussions

Best Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Programs and Schools: Overview

School Program Accreditation
Arizona State University Master of Science in User Experience Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
Brandeis University Master of Science User-Centered Design New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE)
DePaul University Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction at DePaul University Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
Drexel University Master of Science in Information Human-Computer Interaction & User Experience Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
Kent State University Master of Science in User Experience Design Higher Learning Commission (HLC), National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD)
Maryland Institute College of Art Master of Professional Studies in UX Design Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
Rutgers University Master of Business and Science in User Experience Design Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
University of Kansas Master of Arts in Design with Concentration in Interaction & User Experience Design Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
University of Miami Master of Fine Art in Interactive Design Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
University of Michigan – Dearborn Master of Science in Human-Centered Design and Engineering Higher Learning Commission (HLC)

Best Schools for UX/UI Design: Top Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Programs

Graduate studies in UX/UI design are usually a part of a bigger design program. This encompasses interaction design, real-world projects, design tools, graphic design, web design, and a wide range of other digital design courses. These lead to creating a user-friendly interface for websites, mobile applications, and physical products.

1

Arizona State University

Tempe, AZ

Arizona State University is a public, coeducational institution of higher learning. Academia at the institution includes everything from agriculture and engineering to business and education. The school also has colleges of fine arts, architecture, environmental design, liberal arts, sciences, and law.

Master of Science in User Experience

This online graduate program in user experience (UX) covers UX research, content production, communication, and evaluation of all user interfaces, components, and products. The application requirements for this graduate program include a cumulative GPA of 3.0 in the last 60 hours of a bachelor's degree program.

Alternatively, candidates must have an overall GPA of 3.0 in a relevant master's degree. All applicants must submit a graduate application, an attached transcript, and an indication of relevant design experience, if they have it. It's encouraged to submit a work sample, design portfolio, writing sample, prototype, and research report.

Master of Science in User Experience Overview

  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Tuition: $543-$1,343/credit
  • Required Credits: 30 credits
  • Program Length: 3 semesters at 9-10 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: Online
  • NCES School Graduation Rate: 24%

Master of Science in User Experience Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: GRE
  • Application Fee: $70
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor's degree
  • Other Requirements: Statement of purpose

Applying to Arizona State University

  1. Submit the graduate admission application
  2. Pay the application fee
  3. Submit your official transcripts
  4. Submit a sample of work (recommended)
  5. Submit a statement of purpose
2

Brandeis University

Waltham, MA

Brandeis University is a Massachusetts-based private research university founded in 1948 as a co-educational, non-sectarian institution. The Jewish community funded the school on the site of the former Middlesex University. Louis Brandeis, the nation's first Jewish supreme court justice, inspired the school's name.

Master of Science in User-Centered Design

The Master of Science in User-Centered Design program helps students graduate with a portfolio that expresses their skills and empowers them to move forward in any organization. It'll also help them launch a new career path in digital products improvement, project management, and application development.

You'll need 30 credit hours to graduate in the electives and core courses. The topics take you deeper into your areas of interest, including web development, project management, and the design of emerging technologies.

Master of Science in User-Centered Design Overview

  • Accreditation: New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE)
  • Tuition: $3,660/3 credits (part-time); $2,928/3 credits (full-time)
  • Required Credits: 30 credits
  • Program Length: 3 semesters at 9-10 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: Online
  • NCES School Graduation Rate: 89%

Master of Science in User-Centered Design Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: None
  • Application Fee: $75
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor's degree
  • Other Requirements: Letter of recommendation

Applying to Brandeis University

  1. Submit your undergraduate transcript
  2. Send your resume
  3. Attach your statement of goals
  4. Attach your letter of recommendation
  5. Pay the application fee
3

DePaul University

Chicago, IL

DePaul University in Chicago is a private Catholic research university. Vincentians founded the university in 1898, naming it as a tribute to Saint Vincent de Paul, a 17-century French priest. DePaul follows in the footsteps of its founders and places special emphasis on recruiting students from underprivileged backgrounds.

Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction

DePaul University’s Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) teaches students to create user-friendly programs. This two-year degree integrates graphic design and computer science. DePaul's HCI program is one of the top UX master’s programs and teaches students skills that will be in high demand in today’s tech-centered job market. Graduate students need a minimum of 52 credits to complete the program.

Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction Overview

  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Tuition: $900/credit
  • Required Credits: 52 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 13 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: Online
  • NCES School Graduation Rate: 71%

Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction

  • GPA: 2.5
  • Standardized Tests: Not required
  • Application Fee: $25
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor's degree
  • Other Requirements: None

Applying to Depaul University

  1. Visit the school's portal
  2. Carefully review prerequisites for admission
  3. Submit the application
  4. Pay the application fee
  5. Access your account to see your admission status
4

Drexel University

Philadelphia, PA

Drexel University is a private research university in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Anthony J. Drexel founded the school in 1981. It was originally known as Drexel Institute of Art, Science, and Industry, but in 1936, it was renamed Drexel Institute of Technology before taking its current name in 1970.

Master of Science in Information Human-Computer Interaction & User Experience

Drexel’s HCI graduate major program is one of the best online UX/UI design master's degrees in the US. It prepares students to design next-generation interfaces collaboratively. Graduates can apply for a variety of jobs in interface design, user experience research, or software development. The courses can be taken online and are open to anyone who wants to get into the UX and HCI world. This degree does not require a strong technical background.

Master of Science in Information Human-Computer Interaction & User Experience Overview

  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
  • Tuition: $1,355/credit
  • Required Credits: 45 credits
  • Program Length: 3 semesters at 10 credits
  • Learning Format: Online
  • NCES School Graduation Rate: 71%

Master of Science in Information Human-Computer Interaction & User Experience Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: None
  • Application Fee: $50
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Other Requirements: Recommendation letter, official transcripts, statement of purpose, resume

Applying to Drexel University

  1. Fill out the application
  2. Attach official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended
  3. Attach one or two letters of recommendation
  4. Attach an essay/statement of purpose
  5. Submit the application and pay the fee
5

Kent State University

Kent, OH

Kent State University began in 1910 to train teachers. Classes started in 1912 in temporary buildings in Kent, with the first campus buildings opening the following year. Since then, the institution has grown to approximately 1,000 acres with 119 buildings on the Kent campus.

Master of Science in User Experience Design

This course requires the completion of 21 credit hours of core courses, 12 credit hours of elective courses, and one capstone project. You can create your portfolio while gaining practical skills in presentation and theory to meet your career goals. This will prepare you to become a UX designer, leader, and innovator.

Master of Science in User Experience Design Overview

  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD)
  • Tuition: $725/credit (in-state); $735/credit (out-of-state)
  • Required Credits: 36 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 9 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: Online
  • NCES School Graduation Rate: 65%

Master of Science in User Experience Design Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: Not required
  • Application Fee: $45
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor's degree
  • Other Requirements: Goal statement, 3 letters of recommendation, official transcripts, goal statement, resume

Applying to Kent State University

  1. Start your application
  2. Attach evidence of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university
  3. Attach letters of recommendation from professors and/or employers
  4. Pay the application fee
  5. Submit your application
6

Maryland Institute College of Art

Baltimore, MD

Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) is a member of the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design (AICAD), a group of 36 top US art schools. The college offers pre-college, post-baccalaureate, and continuing studies. It also offers master of fine arts and bachelor of fine arts programs.

Master of Professional Studies in UX Design

This online program focuses on the intersection of art and technology. It teaches graduate students project management, the fundamental principles of interface design, usability, and prototyping. Industries ranging from gaming to healthcare, education, and defense need graduates with these skills. You can complete this graduate degree as a full-time student in as little as 15 months.

Master of Professional Studies in UX Design Overview

  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
  • Tuition: $9,375/semester
  • Required Credits: 30 credits
  • Program Length: 4 terms at 6-8 credits per term
  • Learning Format: Online
  • NCES School Graduation Rate: 73%

Master of Professional Studies in UX Design Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: Not required
  • Application Fee: $75
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor's degree
  • Other Requirements: Transcripts, resume, statement of purpose, portfolio with narrative

Applying to Maryland Institute College of Art

  1. Submit the graduate application form via SlideRoom
  2. Upload required documents
  3. Attach your portfolio
  4. Pay the application fee
7

Rutgers University

New Brunswick, NJ

Rutgers University is a public land-grant university with four campuses located in New Jersey. It was initially known as Queen's College and was affiliated with the Dutch Reformed Church. It is the eighth-oldest college in America, the second-oldest college in New Jersey college, and one of nine US colonial universities chartered before the American Revolution.

Master of Business and Science User Experience Design

Rutgers University has one of the best UX design master's degree programs in the country. This program gives students the courage to create innovative user interfaces and programs. Students are encouraged to choose their own curriculum. Internship students gain hands-on experience in real tech companies throughout the summer.

Master of Business and Science User Experience Design Overview

  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
  • Tuition:  $923/credit
  • Required Credits: 43 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 10-12 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: Online
  • NCES School Graduation Rate: 84%

Master of Business and Science User Experience Design Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: Not required
  • Application Fee: $70
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor's degree
  • Other Requirements: Attend 12 colloquium events, official transcripts, letters of recommendation, personal statement

Applying to Rutgers University

  1. Create an account in the application portal
  2. Attach official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended
  3. Attach one or two letters of recommendation
  4. Attach an essay or statement of purpose
  5. Pay the application fee
8

The University of Kansas

Lawrence, KS

The first class at The Kansas State University (KU) consisted of 55 students in 1865. Today, the school has a total enrollment of over 28,000 students over five campuses. KU is Kansas state’s flagship university and outstanding research institution.

Master of Arts in Design with Concentration in Interaction & User Experience Design

Students pursuing the Master of Arts in Interaction Design and User Experience will have a thorough understanding of design principles, methods, and applications. It provides students with the necessary professional knowledge, skills, and competencies to succeed as interface designers. This fully accredited institution offers scholarships for qualified students at a low cost.

Master of Arts in Design with Concentration in Interaction & User Experience Design Overview

  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Tuition: $416/credit (in-state); $998/credit (out-of-state)
  • Required Credits: 31 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 7-8 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: Online
  • NCES School Graduation Rate: 63%

Master of Arts in Design with Concentration in Interaction & User Experience Design Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: GRE
  • Application Fee: $65
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor's degree
  • Other Requirements: Transcripts, 3 letters of recommendation, statement of design philosophy, portfolio

Applying to The University of Kansas

  1. Fill out the graduate application
  2. Pay the application fee
  3. Submit the required documents
  4. Attach a statement of design philosophy
  5. Submit a portfolio of your design work
9

University of Miami

Coral Gables, FL

University of Miami (UM) is a private research university in Coral Gables. Over 17,000 students attend its 12 colleges in nearly 350 academic majors. These include the Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine and the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science on Virginia Key. They both have research sites in southern Miami-Dade County.

Master of Fine Art in Interactive Design

The Master of Fine Arts in Interactive Media prepares students for innovation by exposing them to the business, social, intellectual, and cultural settings of new technologies. The degree requires students to complete at least 45 credit hours at the graduate degree level, with a B grade average or better and no lower than a C. The chair of the curriculum management department must approve any transfer of credit hours or course substitutions.

Master of Fine Art in Interactive Design Overview

  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
  • Tuition: $2,213/credit
  • Required Credits: 45 credits
  • Program Length: 4 semesters at 9-12 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: Online
  • NCES School Graduation Rate: 83%

Master of Fine Art in Interactive Design Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: GRE (recommended)
  • Application Fee: $60
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor's degree
  • Other Requirements: 3 letters of recommendation, statement of professional goals, official transcripts, portfolio

Applying to the University of Miami

  1. Sign up for an account on CollegeNet
  2. Send your official transcripts
  3. Send letters of recommendation
  4. Submit your portfolio
  5. Submit a personal essay.
10

University of Michigan-Dearborn

Dearborn, MI

University of Michigan-Dearborn is one of the state's 14 master's-granting institutions. Its location lies behind Baker College and ahead of Saginaw Valley State University. In addition to a wide range of undergraduate and graduate degree options, the university offers six doctoral degree programs.

Master of Science in Human-Centered Design and Engineering

This degree requires the completion of 31 semester hours where you will research, identify, document, and translate the user's requirements and expectations. You create new ideas in implementing and assessing goods or services scientifically. The program teaches late afternoon and evening classes to allow students to obtain the degree part-time. You can complete the curriculum on campus, online, or through both.

Master of Science in Human-Centered Design and Engineering Overview

  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Tuition: $1,225/credit (in-state); $1,432/credit (out-of-state)
  • Required Credits: 31 credits
  • Program Length: 3 semesters at 10 credits per semester
  • Learning Format: Online
  • NCES School Graduation Rate: 55%

Master of Science in Human-Centered Design and Engineering Admission Requirements

  • GPA: 3.0
  • Standardized Tests: GRE, GMAT
  • Application Fee: $60
  • Minimum Education: Bachelor's degree
  • Other Requirements: 2 letters of recommendation, link to design portfolio (encouraged), statement of purpose, resume, transcripts

Applying to University of Michigan - Dearborn

  1. Create an account on the school’s online portal
  2. Submit all the required documents
  3. Provide a link to your digital portfolio
  4. Pay the application fee

What Is an Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree?

An online UX/UI design master’s degree trains students to become design professionals to create websites, software, and other products. Students in an online UX/UI program focus on the user side of websites and applications, ensuring an easy-to-navigate and pleasant user experience. UX design careers include product research, product prototyping, and product testing.

Online vs In-Person UX/UI Design Master’s Degrees

The best thing about online UX/UI design master’s degree programs is the flexibility. You can plan your study time around your other responsibilities because you’re not required to be in class at certain times of the week, as an in-person program would. Both in-person and online graduate programs are useful in networking and working towards a PhD, although they differ in some significant ways. Below are the top five benefits of an in-person vs online program.

Top 5 Benefits of an Online Masters Degree in UX/UI Design

  • Flexibility . You can complete your degree at your own pace from anywhere in the world. Additionally, some online courses allow you to set your own pace and schedule.
  • Career advancement. Online master’s degrees can help you change careers and improve your chances of career advancement without quitting your job. Alternatively, an in-person degree program would likely require you to put your career on hold.
  • Transferable skill set . Software development is one of the many fields accessible to degree holders. Online degrees make it possible to change your skillset and work simultaneously.
  • High demand. According to the US of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment in this field will increase by 13 percent between 2020 and 2030. This field is highly demanded and rewarded, with a solid projection for growth.
  • Opportunities for networking . Networking opportunities offered through degree programs can be an excellent way to meet professionals in your field. Networking could lead to internships or employment after graduation.

Top 5 Benefits of an In-Person Masters Degree in UX/UI Design

  • Focused environment. An in-person degree program allows you to experience learning in a focused environment, as opposed to an online program that comes with more distractions.
  • Easy access to instructors. Even though an online program allows you to communicate with instructors, it’s not nearly as convenient or efficient as face-to-face interaction.
  • Peer relationships. Online degree programs don’t allow the same opportunity for students to meet and form meaningful relationships with peers, as in-person programs. Although you might be able to meet classmates online, the relationship won’t be the same as it could be on campus.
  • Access to resources . In-person students have access to the school’s library and other tangible resources that are much more difficult for online students to access.
  • Networking. Although online degree programs also offer networking opportunities, it’s much easier in person to form beneficial connections.

What Types of Online Masters Degree in UX/UI Design?

The three available types of online degrees in UX/UI design are a master of art, master of science, and master of professional studies. While these three types of degrees share many similarities, they differ slightly in their intent.

Is It Better to Get a Master of Arts or Master of Science in UX/UI Design?

It is better to get a Master of Arts in UX/UI Design if you enjoy the creative and social aspects of the field. This degree focuses on design methods, design simulations, interaction design, and user experience design. A Master of Arts in UX/UI Design also includes an advanced study of human factors in design.

It is better to get a Master of Science in UX/UI Design if you like to be more systematic in organizing and structuring content. A master of science focuses on information architecture, principles of interaction, and user design principles. Both degree types usually involve a thesis and take approximately two years to complete.

How Much Does a UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Cost?

The average cost for a UX/UI design master’s degree is $19,314 per year. The required average number of credits is between 30 and 45. Tuition rates are directly affected by the program, public or private status, and residency status.

Students must also consider campus fees such as parking, technology, and health care. Online programs are a great way to save money on your graduate degree. Many schools offer financial aid, including loans, grants, and scholarships for students who wish to pursue a master’s degree.

How Long Does It Take to Get a UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Online?

It takes 15 months to two years of full-time study to get a UX/UI design master’s degree. There must be at least 30 hours of coursework completed together with a project or thesis for this degree to be awarded. You can also pursue the degree on a part-time basis, although this will extend the amount of time it takes to complete your program.

Are Online UX/UI Design Degrees Respected?

Yes, online UX/UI design degrees are respected. Online UX/UI design degrees are respected as much as on-campus master’s degrees. All of these schools are accredited and staffed by experienced professors who teach the same classes in person. The assignments and the testing processes follow the same guidelines as in-person classes.

Is UX/UI Design Hard to Learn Online?

No, UX/UI design is not hard to learn online. In fact, online classes are preferable since you’ll be working with a computer. You will work on projects that develop your design skills and count towards building a portfolio. Online degree programs allow you to develop many of the digital skills necessary for the UX/UI field.

UX/UI Design Bootcamp vs Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree: Which Is Better?

Bootcamps certainly have their unique benefits when it comes to learning user interface and experience design. People with master’s degrees have more in-depth knowledge because of the depth of their training. Below are some of the top benefits of each education route.

Top 5 Benefits of an Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree

  • Advanced opportunities. High-level positions require advanced degrees, so earning one can open the door to new employment prospects.
  • Accredited qualification . Having a credential from an accredited institution on your resume demonstrates a reputable education to potential employers.
  • In-depth program. At the master’s level, you’ll develop in-depth knowledge and skills in a wide range of areas, which will make you a competitive candidate for high-level positions.
  • Comprehensive education. Students can study a wide range of interests and disciplines in an online Master’s Degree in UX/UI Design. You may also be able to enroll in courses in communication, finance, or other fields related to your major, unlike a bootcamp that solely focuses on the skills for the field.
  • Opportunity for higher education . Upon completing your master’s degree, you may wish to pursue a PhD. Obtaining your master’s degree opens the opportunity for a PhD program.

Top 5 Benefits of a UX/UI Bootcamp

  • Strong support network. Many UX bootcamps offer memberships to active Facebook groups, Slack channels, or other platforms that allow you to connect with fellow students online.
  • Easier to complete. Degree programs require you to meet a specific number of credit hours, complete many assignments, and carry out group projects for two years. Bootcamp participants follow a manageable, straightforward, and practical curriculum.
  • Career services. Bootcamps typically have a career coach or director on staff to assist students in finding employment. They also assist trainees in preparing for interviews and portfolio presentations and link them with industry experts.
  • Short and quick. Bootcamps are less time-consuming than master’s degrees. You should be able to complete them in 12 to 24 weeks, as the curriculum and qualifications aren’t as advanced as a master’s degree.
  • Organized curriculum . A bootcamp curriculum divides subjects into multi-week stages, the first stage beginning with fundamental coding skills. Afterward, the coursework becomes more technical. It ends in a performance phase that assesses the web application you developed and your grasp of the material you’ve learned.

Why You Should Get a UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Online

You should get a UX/UI design master’s degree online because it is a great way to get hands-on experience. Most designers begin their careers by taking online classes, which is a convenient way of learning. However, with a master’s degree, you can qualify for managerial positions and advanced promotions within the field.

Even though UX bootcamps are worthwhile , the best online UX/UI design master’s degrees expand on the content taught in bootcamps. They offer a full regimen of what a UX designer must learn to qualify for a variety of UX/UI positions. In addition, earning your master’s degree will qualify you for higher salaries.

What Courses Do You Take in an Online Master’s Degree Program in UX/UI Design?

Courses you take in an online master’s degree program in UX/UI design may differ in terms of the course title and topics covered, depending on the school you attend. However, the core courses below cover some of the topics you can expect to learn throughout your master’s degree program.

Foundations of Human-Centered Design

This course introduces human-centered design principles and processes. A primary focus is to teach students how to create applications, products, and services with people in mind, using user-centered design and design thinking methods. Students learn how to gather and understand the needs of a target audience.

Research Methods in User Experience Design

This course covers qualitative and quantitative user-centric design. It explains that there are other methods for collecting and measuring data in addition to physiological, behavioral, and subjective data. This course introduces students to the basics of experimental design and basic statistics. It also covers aspects of the elicitation of user needs, such as cognitive task analysis, physiological computing, and sentiment analysis.

Human-Computer Interaction for UI/UX Design

Students in this course will learn about the most recent theories and approaches for designing and testing user-friendly interfaces and user experiences. This course is foundational in perfecting the features and functions that users look for when interacting with applications and websites.

Visual Interface Design

Digital prototypes are transformed into high-fidelity designs as students explore and experiment with key paradigms of visual communication. They apply this to the delivery of user experiences on digital devices. They also develop processes for creating and developing visually-led user interface designs that are engaging and easy to understand.

Final Project

With the help of an assigned supervisor, students select a topic that gets presented as a tangible product with supporting information about its context. The most important criterion when picking a topic is that it must be relevant to your academic or professional development.

Continuing Education Paths for Online Master’s Degree Program Degree Graduates

Continuing education paths for online master’s degree graduates are a Doctoral Degree in Human Design Technology, Interactive Design, or Visual Design. Master’s degree graduates can also pursue professional certifications.

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What to Look For in the Best UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Programs

Things to look for in the best UX/UI design master’s degree programs are cost, job placement rate, and accreditation. There are a plethora of UX/UI design programs available. Below are some of the top factors you should consider in a master’s degree program.

Cost

You need to ascertain how much money you must pay to obtain the degree. This includes the cost of tuition, living expenses, and any additional fees. If it’s more than you can afford, you can apply for federal funding or scholarships to alleviate student debt.

Job Prospects

It’s easy to get caught up in the initial cost and not consider the potential return. The median salary of a UX professional is much higher than in other countries. Since the job is plentiful and the pay is good, there’ll be a great return on investment with this degree.

Length

Most UX master’s programs take two years to complete, however, some take a year to 18 months. One-year programs cost less than two-year programs. There are also summer internship options, which might give you the necessary experience before finding a job.

School Reputation

A respected school and program will place you in a better position when it comes to job hunting and provides you with access and connection to a strong alumni network. This network will benefit you for many decades to come.

Accreditation

A school’s postsecondary education must achieve specific criteria to be accredited by a regional or national accrediting body. It is crucial to attend an approved and accredited master’s program in UX/UI design. Accreditation status can impact credit transferability, potentially impacting your eligibility for future PhD programs.

What Is the Most Affordable Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree?

The most affordable online UX/UI design master’s degree is offered by The University of Kansas and costs $9,989. The Master of Arts in Design with Concentration in Interaction and User Experience Design should amount to $19,978 over the two-year course.

Can I Get a UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Online for Free?

No, you can’t get a UX/UI design master’s degree online for free. However, you can find many free online massive open online courses and online bootcamps. Furthermore, you can apply for financial aid, scholarships, grants, or student loans.

Salary and Job Outlook for Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Graduates

A woman doing UX design using a computer and an iPad
Woman doing remote work UX design on the computer for a client

The average salary and job outlook for online UX/UI design master’s degree graduates is quite high. Although it varies depending on the industry, company, location, and level of experience, having a master’s degree guarantees you a high salary and qualification for high-level positions.

How Hard Is It to Get a Job With a UX/UI Design Master’s Degree?

It is not hard to get a job with a UX/UI design master’s degree. Having an online master’s degree in UX/UI design shows that you’re enthusiastic about the profession and know more than the average designer. In addition to a master’s degree, building a portfolio can go a long way towards ensuring you get a job.

What’s the Average Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Salary?

According to PayScale, the average salary of a Master of Science in Interactive Design holder is $80,000 per year. This is more than the average base salary of a graphic designer at $47,373. In addition, the job outlook for UX/UI designers, classified as web developers and digital interface designers by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, is promising at 25,500 projected openings by 2030 .

What Jobs Can You Get With an Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree?

Jobs you can get with an online UX/UI design master’s degree include information architect, interaction designer, and user researcher. One of the fascinating aspects of the dynamic, fast-growing computer-driven sector is user experience. UX/UI design master’s degree jobs include a wide range of work prospects in many areas.

UX/UI Design Degree Jobs

  • Information Architect
  • Interaction Designer
  • Usability Analyst
  • User Researcher
  • UX Designer

Potential Careers With an Online UX/UI Design Degree

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How Much Money Can You Make With an Online UX/UI Design Degree?

You can make $115,267 or more with an online UX/UI design degree. The pay for UX/UI designers increases in direct proportion to their level of education and experience. It’s important to note that exact salaries depend on your position, organization, industry, location, and level of experience.

Highest-Paying Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Jobs and Salaries: Overview

UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Jobs Average Salary
Lead UX Designer $115,267
Information Architect $98,148
User Researcher $88,594
Interaction Designer $78,104
Usability Analyst $70,496

Best Jobs for Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Grads

The best jobs for online UX/UI design master’s degree grads include lead UX designers, information architects, and user researchers. Global employers are always on the lookout for talented interaction designers to join their teams. Adapting to a digital-first environment has led to a boom in this profession. Below, we’ll look at these careers in more detail.

1

Lead UX Designer

Average Salary: $115,267

The UX lead designer coordinates interaction methods for devices with client businesses and user goals. Your focus is on usability and function and marketing, branding, and design. You must understand customers' motivations, behaviors, and needs to help designers discover market opportunities for their project solutions. You are responsible for the user experience.

2

Information Architect

Average Salary: $98,148

Information architects are a hybrid of digital librarians and cognitive psychologists. Information architects organize content and information across a digital product and research how this affects the user experience. They ensure the website or screen is structured to help users reach their goals. Information architects also oversee the site's general navigation, ensuring that the user's trip is coherent.

3

User Researcher

Average Salary: $88,594

UX researchers are experts in the research phase of design. They are experts in human behavior and responsible for gaining deep insights into users' motivations and needs. They use qualitative and quantitative research and employ various techniques. These techniques are rooted in one of three core methodologies, including observation, understanding, and analysis.

4

Interaction Designer

Average Salary: $78,104

An interactive designer uses data from users, research, and input from colleagues to create an interactive concept that provides a seamless, fluid, engaging experience for all users. This career field might include creating prototypes for an application or service and working with visual designers to develop full design solutions.

5

Usability Analyst

Average Salary: $70,496

Professionals in this industry employ usability principles and user research to find design flaws.  This job contributes to the achievement of usability objectives by setting project goals, measuring outcomes, and assessing the success of specific projects. The responsibilities of this position include investigating and resolving user experience issues through testing, improving, and disseminating actionable findings that will improve customer or user experiences.

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Is an Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree Worth It?

Yes, an online UX/UI design master’s degree is worth it because it can help you gain more knowledge about user experience. UX/UI master’s degrees can also study the research side of UX design, allowing you to pursue a PhD. UX/UI master’s programs can help you build a strong network of like-minded professionals. Pursuing this credential guarantees you a high-paying and stable career.

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Online UX/UI Design Master’s Degree FAQ

How useful is a Master’s Degree in Human Computer-Interaction for the UX field?

Getting a Master’s Degree in Human-Computer Interaction in the UX field is very useful. This is especially important if you want to work in a top company. Many master of arts, master of science, and master of fine arts programs include human-computer interaction as part of their curricula. Any of these degrees will help you get into the field.

Do I need a master’s degree to get a job in UX design?

No, you don’t need a master’s degree to get a job in UX design. It is far easier to obtain employment with job experience than with a master’s degree. However, if you’re aiming for a high-level position in the field, pursuing your master’s degree is the best way to meet that goal.

What are online graduate certificates?

Online graduate certificates supplement existing knowledge. Colleges and universities offer online graduate certificates that provide insight into specific aspects of a discipline. Graduates learn new skills that will help them remain competitive in the workplace.

Is UX/UI still in demand?

Yes, UX/UI is still in demand. Every day, the need for UX designers is increasing. Glassdoor included UX/UI design in its top 50 jobs in 2021 . As the demand for user-friendly interfaces increases, more jobs will open in the future.

About us: Career Karma is a platform designed to help job seekers find, research, and connect with job training programs to advance their careers. Learn about the CK publication.

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Hezekiah Oluwole

About the author: Hezekiah is a content writer and prospective software engineer. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Obafemi Awolowo University. He also has education in project management, digital marketing, SEO writing, and software engineering with a specialty in backend development.

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