I need some sound advice. I want to formally specialize in iOS UI/UX design and then expand into the development side of things.
Do you know where I should start in terms of tertiary education and what qualification would be best?
It seems like a very grey area?
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Specialization is a great thing. Not a get area at all. I’d go all in on swift ui at this point. If you look at the state of the union at wwdc, it’s clear that that’s the way forward over catalyst — you may even get a watch app for free. There’s been some ambiguity about that over the years, but that seems to be over now. The tools are making leaps and bounds forward, it’s exciting to learn and grow with, and maybe even shape them.
For design, the apple human interface guidelines were also just updated. Apple leans more in native apps, sketch/adobe, with their official support, but there tons of figma resources to get started with in the community and beyond.
What kind of work are you going to be doing? For what kind of clients?
That’s an interesting question. Design and development seem so differentiated nowadays, I wonder how one can expand towards the other side without alienating everyone. There used to be "ux engineering" and "creative computing", but I haven’t heard a lot about that lately. Are there new career paths on the rise?
I'm not sure what the iOS side of it looks like, but I can speak about the web side:
Big organizations have the money for people to specialize, so if you want a hybrid role you're more likely gonna find one with smaller teams or maybe start ups. A lot of the times how much dev or design you'll do varies on the company's needs. You really gotta read the job description and ask questions in interviews to get a feel for it.
Knowing dev as a designer, or vise versa is definitely an asset though. It makes working with devs a lot easier when you can speak a common language.
When talking about it in interviews though be cautious, my dev skills been a point of contention for myself in many interviews. Companies just want to make sure what you're looking for aligns with what they need.
As for where to start? I'd say if you have an interest in it there's plenty of swift tutorials on the web that could get you into it. Books or online courses are options too. I know Design+Code offers swift courses, might wanna check it out.