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311 Avoid Dark UX Design Patterns in Your Learning Ecosystem

2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Wednesday, April 12

Tracks: Data & Platforms

Many learning platforms, including those that call themselves learner-centric or learning experience platforms, have small “gotchas” in their user-experience design that impede, frustrate, and alienate your learners. This leads to poor engagement, system abandonment, and reduces your ability to see a good return on investment in your learning platform implementation. What are some of these patterns that are frequently employed, why are they so prevalent, and how can you avoid them?

In this session, you will learn about the concepts behind Dark User Experience (Dark UX), aka design anti-patterns, and you will learn how to spot them, counteract them, and make platform choices that reinforce good learner-centric user experiences that lead to better overall learner engagement. I will share examples sourced from the wild, provide surveying questions and tools to help you gauge your audience’s frustration level with their platform, and provide data on experiments performed on learning user bases from several leading organizations to help you understand how things can be better for you, your audience, and your business.

In this session you will learn:

  • What dark design patterns are
  • How Dark UX runs counter to your organizational goals
  • How to determine if Dark UX is stymying your userbase
  • What sort of evaluation tools you can use to avoid buying platforms that employ Dark UX

Technology discussed:

User experience design, user interface design, learning platforms

Chad Udell

Chief Strategy Officer


Chad Udell is the award-winning managing partner, strategy and new product development, at Float and SparkLearn. He has worked with Fortune 500 companies and government agencies to create experiences for 20 years. Chad is an expert in mobile design and development, and speaks at events on related topics. He is author of Learning Everywhere: How Mobile Content Strategies Are Transforming Training and co-editor/author, with Gary Woodill, of Mastering Mobile Learning: Tips and Techniques for Success and Shock of the New.