Projects for UMSI UX classes

Every semester, hundreds of University of Michigan students complete industry projects as part of their School of Information course work in usability evaluation, user research, and other subjects.

Your organization (business, non-profit, government agency, etc.) can propose a project for a team of students to work on! Here are some reasons why:

Your organization is just starting to focus on user interface design but does not have the resources to do user research or usability testing.Have a student team tackle one of your most pressing challenges. You will get insights you can apply right away, plus have an example to show the value.
Your UX team is overworked.Pick a project from your list that is lower priority but still important, as a way to extend your team’s output while also helping students learn.
You plan to hire UX practitioners.Propose a project as a way to meet some of the top emerging UX talent in Michigan (and the world).
You are not familiar with the UMSI curriculum.Get a glimpse into what one of the oldest and most innovative UX academic programs is doing. If you like what they are teaching, update some of your methods or send some of your employees off to get a degree.

Example projects

  • A tool that needs an evaluation to ensure it meets the needs of your users.
  • A dynamic website that needs a user experience assessment.
  • An information problem you are trying to solve but are unsure of a potential solution.
  • An idea for a product that would meet the needs of an aging population or people with disabilities that you need help researching and designing.

Courses seeking clients

About the courseClient expectations & receivables
SI 622: Needs Assessment and Usability Evaluation
Masters students work with clients to evaluate how well the user experience of their existing product or service meets the needs of its users. Methods used include: interaction map, user interviews, competitive analysis, survey, heuristic evaluation, user testing. See the FAQ for clients.
Give feedback on and receive deliverables for each of these assignments.

Meet weekly with students, connect students with users for user interviews (5 people), survey (50 people), and user testing (5 people).

Receive a series of reports and analyses, plus a final video presentation.
SI 682: Advanced User Research in the Field
Masters students conduct advanced user research methods for information challenges that are early in the product life cycle.
Meet with students, provide feedback, and must provide access to users.

Receive a polished report or presentation of findings.
SI 699: UX Research and Design Mastery Course
Masters students in their final semester will research and design a tool or product, with a focus on accessibility for disabled, and/or aging populations.
Meet with students, provide feedback, and must provide access to users.

Receive a report of research and design.

To propose a project, complete the form at or email

To learn more about client opportunities with the School of Information, visit

November 2020 News

Another monthly newsletter went out to our mailing list subscribers this morning.


Get the whole story in the November 2020 Michigan UXPA newsletter.

Update (11/5): After the email newsletter came out, we noticed three November webinars by UXPA International. These are free and open to anyone: you do not have to be a UXPA International member to join.

  • November 6. Writing for the Web: The Six Step LUCID Writing Approach that Gets Your Message Across
  • November 11. Managing Researcher Risk, Well-Being, and Emotional Safety in the Field
  • November 13. How Artifacts Afford: The Power and Politics of Everyday Things (UXPA Book Club)

More details on the UXPA International upcoming webinar page, with links to Zoom to register.

We also discovered another Sundberg-Ferar Virtual Design Conversation, November 19, 12-4pm, on furniture, AI & User Experience and life-saving textile innovation. Free, via Zoom.

August 2020 News

A recap of the email newsletter that went out Wednesday 8/12:

See the August newsletter for the whole story.

Registration for Design Systems event is open!

You can now get a ticket to our September 9th event “Planning & Cultivating Design Systems. Register at Eventbrite.

  • Admission is $5 and includes dinner (sponsored by Vitamin T).
  • CCS students are free but need to register ahead of time.

Sponsorships are available for $200. Your organization gets recognized for supporting the community. You can display information, like job openings or service offerings, at the event. Sponsors also get up to 10 free tickets: after paying at Eventbrite, we will contact you to get your list of attendees.

Register at Eventbrite

Listen to case studies that will explain:

  • The parts that make up a design system
  • How the parts assemble to create a unified design language
  • Critical strategies for both stakeholder approval and team adoption

Learn more about the program

August Michigan UXPA Newsletter

We have two important announcements this month!

Save the Date for our Detroit Month of Design Event on 9/9/19!

Join Michigan UXPA  on September 9th for our Detroit Month of Design Event “Planning & Cultivating Design Systems” where you’ll learn a systematic framework to plan, promote, and launch a design system and create buy-in for one throughout a company. 

  • Registration will open up next week
  • If you or your company is interested in sponsoring, please contact us at so we can discuss what you would like to do

 Nominations are open for Michigan UXPA Leadership Positions

Michigan UXPA is run by an all-volunteer board of local members and we are seeking smart, strong, visionary board members to join us! Develop your leaderships skills and build up your local connections to educators, corporations, agencies, and other organizations involved in user experience.

If that is you, or someone you know, please nominate yourself or a colleague. Serving on the MiUXPA board will advance your career and help build a strong and welcoming UX community in Michigan

Upcoming Deadlines

Midwest UX 
October 10-12, 2019 – Grand Rapids, MI
Call for Volunteers – ASAP

UXPA International Mentorship Program
September – November, 2019
Application Deadline – August 17

February 2-7, 2020 – Milan, Italy
Submission Deadline – September 8

UX Events Around Michigan

Southeast Michigan

Ladies that UX Detroit Happy Hour
August 7 – Detroit

You will F**k up and That’s Ok (How to be a Male Ally in Tech) with Tech[inclusive]
August 13 – Ann Arbor

Rapid Product Development in the Age of Connected Devices with Pillar
August 15 – Detroit

Detroit Month of Design Events – Highlights

Brand Camp Summit: Rebrand [ Cities. People. Culture. + Tech.]
September 5 – Detroit

Design Dash Detroit
September 9 – Detroit

Multicultural Design in a Re-Emerging City 
September 11 – Detroit

Drinks x Design: Design Crawl
September 12 – Detroit

Smart Cities – Smart Citizens
September 16 – Detroit

Empower Urban Communities Through Design: A Detroit-Denmark Conversation
September 17 – Detroit

Toyota Lecture Series Presents: Dr. John Jordan
September 18 – Detroit

DCDT Talk: Diversity in Design 
September 19 – Detroit

Videogames from Abertay University, Dundee City of Design
September 23 – Detroit

Let’s Jam: Unleashing Ideas to Power Your Business
September 24 – Detroit

Suchi Reddy: Form Follows Feeling Talk 
September 25 – Detroit

re:publica Detroit Conference
September 27-28 – Detroit Also, check out Deborah Edwards-Onoro’s August entry of UX events.


Lansing Experience Design – UX Monthly
August 8 – Okemos

Drinks and Digital Lansing: Website Optimization and UX
September 11 – Lansing

Lansing Experience Design – UX Monthly
September 12 – Okemos

West Michigan

Citizen Labs Hack Night
August 6 – Grand Rapids

The Archives Series – Presenting: Discovery – AIGA West Michigan
August 12 – Saugatuck


TUG Webinar Series: “Let’s talk about Information Architecture with Lynn Boyden”
August 11

UXPA International “Universal Design with Accessibility in Mind”August 23

Drupal Speaker Diversity Workshop
September 21 & 28


College for Creative Studies – Detroit

United Shore – Pontiac

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