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Colin A. Eagan, M.S. | Experience Design

Award-winning experience designer, author, and speaker specializing in information architecture, content strategy, and UX personalization

Most people drew pictures when they were kids. Colin made his own board games. Luckily, he gets to further his love of information design as UX manager at ICF International in Washington, D.C., where he consults for Fortune 500 companies, nonprofits and government clients including UPS, Lowe’s, AARP, AAA, NHS and DOI. Notable projects include the launch of Open Forum by American Express, responsive redesign of Aids.gov, and work on Bank of America’s Flagscape intranet, cited by Jackob Neilsen as a top pick for intranet usability. Colin is a frequent contributor to UX conferences and publications, including UXPA International, UXDC, Gilbane, A List Apart, Ad Age, and The UX Booth. He credits any career success thus far to not going to law school.

Helpful UX questions, answered not terribly helpfully

How do you get a job in UX design?

Answer: Not easy, but possible. UX people come from a variety of backgrounds, which can make it a bit confusing to break into the field. In this answer we’ll explore some common career paths such as transferring from another technical career, or a bootcamp. The good news? Not nearly as difficult as getting a job as a neonatal cardiac surgeon.     

How much do entry level UX designers make?

Answer: Not much. You would probably make more managing an Arby’s. But hey you could also probably do worse. More to the point, around $63k for 0-2 years experience according to one study, and $71k with a two year graduate degree, according to another. We’ll take a look at those data points and others in this answer.   

I just bought this hat. Would you say that would helpful for a job in UX?

Answer: You’re in luck. A hat is a wise investment in any field, and having one in a design field is simply apropos. While I don’t commonly wear a hat myself, I am envious of those who do. Hats can shield you from a variety of indoor office hazards, such as unwanted co-worker eye contact, bugs, and florescent lights. 

Articles

UX in the Age of Personalization

A List Apart | January 17, 2019

There is a watershed moment approaching for personalization design. Most strategy is still driven out of marketing and IT departments, a holdover from the legacy of the inbound, “creepy” targeted ad. Fixing that model requires the same paradigm shift we’ve used to tackle other challenges in our field. In this piece, we take a detailed look at the UX practitioner’s emerging role in personalization design: from influencing technology selection, to data modeling, to page-level implementation.

Five Lessons from Architecture School that Will Improve Your UX Work

UX Planet | Feburary 5, 2019

Because architects have been designing human-spatial interactions for like, ever, there are a number of helpful principles they take for granted that can be useful for UX (User Experience) people in those moments when you’re grasping for a design compass. Here are just a few from architect and author Matthew Frederick.

Finding Balance in Your Latest Digital Project

UX Booth | January 22

Workflows stuffed-up? Wireframes inflamed? As User Experience designers, it’s our job to juggle lots of inputs, but overindulging any one set of needs can result in a bloated product. If you find yourself flailing just to keep everyone happy, it might be time to rediscover your project’s digital center. Here’s just the model to help.