Opinion: Google's UX Design Professional Course: Is it Worth It?

Ryan Shannon

Thoughts on Google's Coursera course.Ryan Scott Design

After weeks of empathizing with users, creating intuitive user flows, and experimenting with Figma and Adobe XD, I finally earned my UX Design Professional Certificate from Google. But, was it worth it in the end?

Were the numerous quizzes, many practice activities, and dozens of peer-reviewed assignment submissions worth it? The answer: Oh yeah, absolutely.

With my Google Professional Certificate in UX Design in hand, I now have not only a theoretical framework to base my #uxdesign works upon, but also real, hands-on experience with a variety of design platforms (including both apps and responsive websites), and screen sizes.

Why Google's UX Design Certificate Rocks

1. Build Your Portfolio with Real Apps & Websites

Rather than simply memorize the basics of UX design, Google's Coursera course encourages learners to take action from the start. Throughout the course of the 7-unit program, you create three main projects: an app for a local business generated by Sharpen, a responsive website for a local business, and a final project on social good involving a "Graceful Degradation" desktop-first design.

In summary, not only are you learning and being tested on the foundations of UX design, you're also expected to apply what you've learned. As a result, I and all completers of this course, now have a starter portfolio.

2. Intuitive Learning Sequence

Google's UX design course is an optimized experience for the learner. Unit 1, "Foundations of User Experience (UX) Design" was highly theoretical, covering the basics of UX design. There weren't any peer-reviewed assignments in this unit, with quizzes and tests being the main means of checking student progress. The following units, however, were hands-on. Typically, we would learn new concepts, take quizzes to ensure we've comprehended them, engage in a practice activity and compare to an exemplar, and finally submit our work for peer evaluation.

In summary, the learning sequence allowed me to memorize several new concepts and UX design-specific jargon due to its test, practice, submit sequence. Not only, I feel extremely comfortable with both Figma and Adobe XD after following the course's sequence.

3. Dedicated Portfolio Website

As mentioned, part of the requirements for obtaining Google's Professional Certificate in UX Design involves creating a dedicated website. This was created in the last unit, Unit 7, and while it took a couple of hours to throw together, I'm so glad I have a dedicated space to showcase several case studies, previous design work, my resume and a way to be reached. My website, ryanscottdesign.com, was constructed with Google Site and was simple to create.

In summary, I'm so glad I now have a dedicated place to direct interested recruiters, employers, and colleagues. Having your own website is a nice, professional touch and allows you to display your designs more freely.


Google's Professional Certificate in UX Design was intensive, hands-on, and well-thought-out. Completing the program allows you to learn lots thanks to its intuitive progression. And, you'll leave with a website and starter portfolio. It's an unbeatable deal!

Thanks for reading. Subscribe for more stories.Ryan Scott Shannon

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Digital nomad, I/O psychology student, entrepreneur. Visited nearly 30 countries. Author of 5 books on freelancing, travel, mental health.

Bellingham, WA

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