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World Usability Day is single day of events occurring around the world that brings together communities of professional, industrial, educational, citizen, and government groups for our common objective: to ensure that the services and products  important to life are easier to access and simpler to use. Each year, World Usability Day is built around a theme relevant to the state of design and technology today.

network of lights over a dark map of North America

This year’s theme explores online design systems that are helping us stay connected, learn, and grow in these transformational times. Ethical design and designing for trust, diversity, equity, and inclusion are examined and addressed, as are important issues such as “dark patterns.”

Of course, World Usability Day focuses on technologies that are constantly evolving—the culmination of months and months of discovery, iteration, prototyping application.


Over the next week—as a continuation of National Entrepreneurship Month—we’ll be celebrating the entrepreneurs, instructors, and courses driving innovation by harnessing (and teaching students to harness) technology to create products that people need and want—as opposed to non-purposeful gadgets—and how they ensure (either in theory or in practice) that those products are not only accessible, and purposeful, but easy to use. Courses include:

Introduction to User Experience Design (UXD)

This intense, week-long course just finished up on Sunday, November 7. The course project, coincidentally, challenged students to leverage technology to create human-centered mobile applications designed to “facilitate an inclusive and supportive sense of community through a peer network or some other means that will enable [Rutgers University] students and faculty to support their own and each other’s identity, well-being, and day-to-day lives.”

Following an end-to-end design process that started with user research, the teams ultimately presented six very individual solutions—with each team approaching the challenge in unique and different ways—creating mobile apps designed to increase and monitor students’ well-being, improve their ability to access information, manage stress, manage time, connect with advisors, connect with other students, and more.

Other Signature Courses:

In the meantime, celebrating and acknowledging World Usability Day reminds us that as technology becomes more sophisticated, it’s more important than ever that it remains human-centered. And, most importantly, fundamental-yet-essential technology needs to remain available to and accessible by all.

PSM Editorial Staff
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