Back in September of 2019, I decided to join the Web Development Certificate Program at Humber College and in the past few months, I have transitioned from a user experience designer to a full stack web developer. However, through the process, I have discovered the many differences between these two roles and the importance and balance between both of them.
Focusing on the visual aspect and interaction
As a user experience designer, my focus was on user research and interface design. The process consisted of ideation of solutions, wireframes, and high fidelity prototypes with user interviews and tests every step along the way. Thus, the visuals and the interaction were the main goals of the project; once the prototype was approved and fully user-friendly my job was done.
Focusing on content management and functionality
As a web developer, however, things are different; although the user interface remains equally important the biggest part of the projects is not designing a prototype but rather building the application itself. As a matter of fact, the way the content is displayed is only the surface of the project, and how the content is structured and connected becomes the biggest part of the project. As web developers, before we even think about wireframing the visual aspect of the project we need to create Entity Relationship Diagrams, so we understand how the content we intend to display is stored and driven. A website without content becomes a still picture and so it’s very important to take our time in this process.
What I have learned and where I am headed
As a now full stack web developer I understand the co-dependence of both these roles. A website is not efficient if it does not have content, or if the content can’t be found easily by the user. Thus, as I move forward in my developer career, I am not leaving user experience behind, but rather building on it to make sure now I am creating useful, fully functional user solutions.
I can’t wait to see what I can build next!