Books Every UX Designer Should Read

1. The Elements of User Experience — Jesse James Garrett

From the moment it was published almost ten years ago, Elements of User Experience became a vital reference for web and interaction designers the world over, and has come to define the core principles of the practice. Now, in an updated, expanded new edition, Jesse James Garrett has refined his thinking about the Web, going beyond the desktop to include information that also applies to the sudden proliferation of mobile devices and applications.

2. 100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know about People — Susan Weinschenk

This particular book focuses on the idea of designing to people’s elicit responses, discussing how designers desire a particular reaction, whether it’s that they want someone to buy something, read more, or take action of some kind. Designing without understanding what makes people act the way they do is like exploring a new city without a map: results will be haphazard, confusing, and inefficient. The book combines real science and research with practical examples to deliver a guide every designer needs, giving you the ability to design more intuitive and engaging work for print, websites, applications, and products that matches the way people think, work, and play.

3. Don’t Make Me Think (Revisited) — Steve Krug

Since Don’t Make Me Think was first published in 2000, hundreds of thousands of Web designers and developers have relied on usability guru Steve Krug’s guide to help them understand the principles of intuitive navigation and information design. Witty, commonsensical, and eminently practical, it’s one of the best-loved and most recommended books on the subject.

4. Lean UX: Applying Lean Principles to Improve User Experience — Jeff Gothelf with Josh Seiden

A favourite of team UXDX’s, the Lean UX approach to interaction design is tailor-made for today’s web-driven reality. In this insightful book, leading advocate Jeff Gothelf teaches you valuable Lean UX principles, tactics, and techniques from the ground up — how to rapidly experiment with design ideas, validate them with real users, and continually adjust your design based on what you learn.

5. The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less — Barry Schwartz

The Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz elaborates on the cautions of choice overload, and how it can make a person question the decisions they make before they even make them, setting someone up for unrealistically high expectations, and how it can make a person themselves for any failures they endure. Barry Schwartz explains why too much of a good thing has proven detrimental to our psychological and emotional well-being. Synthesising current research in the social sciences, he makes the counter-intuitive case that eliminating choices can greatly reduce the stress, anxiety, and busyness of our lives.