Working with your UX Academy Foundations Mentor
Mentorship is a core part of Designlab’s courses, and we want to ensure that every student has a positive and productive experience working with their mentor. UX Academy Foundations is a great opportunity for you to dip your toes into the world of UX/UI design and gain experience working in a collaborative, professional, mentor-mentee style of relationship at the same time.
Not only will you build knowledge around the technical skills of the field, but you’ll also be able to discover more about your own learning and working styles—including what types of mentorship and feedback are most beneficial to you. This insight will be extremely valuable as you move forward in your UX learning journey and into your career!
Mentorship style concerns
We’re proud of our diverse student and mentor community, but we’re all humans, and sometimes we just don’t click, whether on a personal level or in terms of how we see the world.
If you’re just getting started with UX Academy Foundations, we kindly ask that you meet with your assigned mentor for at least 2 sessions before considering a mentor switch. Please also keep the following things in mind:
1) Give your mentor a fair shot.
There’s a lot more to someone's background than you can take in through a profile page or based on first impressions. If you take the time to speak with them, every mentor brings something unique to the table. All of our mentors have been thoroughly vetted, so you can rest assured that they have the required experience and skills to guide you through the course. You can read more information about our vetting process here.
2) Make sure you set expectations during your first mentor call.
This is a good opportunity for you to respectfully set expectations with your mentor on what you want to get out of the course and what type of feedback works best for you. For example, do you prefer a more direct mentorship style or a more nurturing approach? Very detailed feedback or high-level recommendations? If you already have some idea of what style you prefer, come to your first session prepared to share those thoughts with your mentor to help them get to know you. Make sure you also set expectations for how frequently you’ll plan on meeting with one another. (We recommend having one mentor session per unit.) You can also use the first meeting as an opportunity to find out what your mentor expects from you too!
3) Communicate and problem solve.
If you have any concerns about your mentorship experience (for example, you’d like for them to provide more resources in their feedback), it's important to communicate openly and respectfully about these things. Our mentors are here to encourage your growth as a designer and are willing to adjust their approach to make sure you’re getting the support you need, but they first need to be made aware of your specific learning needs. Once you’ve communicated any concerns with your mentor directly, please also give them time to adapt their approach to you.
If you’ve done all of the above and would still like to request a new mentor, please contact the Admissions Team.
We do our best to match you with a mentor whose schedule and availability will be compatible with your own. However, we understand that sometimes things change and that can make it hard to schedule sessions at a time that works for you and your mentor.
If your request is related to scheduling issues, please contact the Admissions Team right away.
It's important to keep in mind that mentors are busy working professionals who mentor in addition to full-time jobs. Designlab’s expectation is that mentors should provide written feedback within 48 hours of you uploading work.
Depending on their working pattern, mentors may also choose not to respond over the weekend. When you first meet your mentor, it’s a good idea to check with them about whether you can expect to receive feedback at weekends.
Note that you can always find your mentor’s contact information on the right side of your dashboard, and we encourage you to communicate directly with them in the first instance of delayed feedback.
If you haven’t heard back from your mentor within the expected timeframe, please let us know and we’ll help sort things out!