UX Self Study - Need advice



Hey Folks. I had been reading about UX for the past one year casually, which inspired me to seriously consider UX as a career. So I have decided to transition from my current role. I do not have a design background and have previously worked as a developer. At present, I am a Technical Document Editor, and do a bit of design work too.
From January this year, I started taking courses in IDF, and have read few books like “Don’t Make Me Think”, “The Design of Everyday Things”, “Get Started in UX”, etc. I attended my first UX Meetup in February and it was a wonderful experience.
I feel simply reading and accumulating knowledge is not going to help me land a UX job. So I have decided to redesign a website, and document my process as a part of my portfolio.
My question is -

  1. Do I need to inform the website owner about my personal project?
  2. I am still a noob in UX and there is a lot I do not know. My process might be incorrect. How do I ensure I am on the right path? Or is there even a right path?

That’s it for now! :smiley:


Hey there,

Brave on you for making a transition. They’re hard, no matter how passionate you are, and you certainly sound passionate!!!

I don’t know the answer to your first question, but I think the answer to the second one is that there isn’t really a right answer. I believe the important thing is to clearly show your thought processes.

That being said, there might be some best practices to follow. Here are a couple of articles that may be helpful.

10 Inspiring UX Portfolios

9 Quick Tips from UX Portfolio Master Joe Natoli


Congrats on making the jump! If I can help you out in any way, let me know!

  1. In general, no, so long as you are doing it for educational purposes. In the US at least, Fair Use doctrine allows for use of material under copyright for educational purposes. There are other reasons why this likely isn’t an issue which aren’t worth expounding on, but suffice it to say that while permission never hurts I wouldn’t let the lack of permission stop me.

  2. What process do you plan on using?


Hi @dougcollins. Thanks… will definitely reach out once I start diving into my project further.

Honestly speaking, I have just decided that I will redesign this website. I haven’t really started working on it.

P.S. I am from India.



Good on you, I can totally recommend the David Travis Course on Udemy. A really great starting point on the Design for the user.

Sign up Udemy, and keep an eye out for the discount offers.




Hey, congrats on the jump!
Others have already answered your main questions, but additionally here are some suggestions to build your portfolio when you are just starting out:

  • Volunteer your skills for a non-profit or a cause you’re passionate about. Win-win. Example catchafire.org . It’s always better to be able to showcase a case study where you’ve designed with data and had to deal with actual business constraints. Especially if you’re building a UX portfolio.
  • Work on a side project of yours. This could be a “real” project of yours.
  • This one is more for UI but you can use practice briefs to get you started and get involved in a community. Briefbox.me has some of these.

Good luck!


Hi @dougcollins. So this is what I am planning. (I decided to redesign this particular website because it has a cluttered landing page and does not have a refined look and feel.)
Here’s a screenshot of the first stage of my plan (Research and Usability Test).


I think you have a decent strategy to start the site review. I’d spend some time thinking about your testing methods and strategy between the initial review and testing sessions.