What Is Design Research Mastery?

  • An online course to take your design career to the NEXT level

    We've tailored the curriculum of this course to teach intermediate and advanced UX & HCD practitioners new skills.

  • Industry SECRETS that consultants keep under lock and key

    Every single detail was created using expertise and experience gained over a decade-long career in UX and service design.

  • A TOOLKIT for professionals ready to transition into HCD & service design.

    This industry is exploding! There aren’t enough qualified candidates for the number of available positions. Master design research while the opportunities are hot!

Become a leader in design research.

When you sign up for Design Research Mastery, you'll get access to:

EIGHT expertly crafted modules.
30+ hours of lectures, video, audio, PDF, and e-book materials.
20+ worksheets, guides, and ready-to-use research templates.
$6,000 worth of bonus material built over a decade long career.
Design research mastery laptop screen

Skyrocket your design career options.

Imagine successfully applying for that design LEADERSHIP role, knowing that you can manage and execute service design research projects with ease.

Imagine transitioning into service design or UX research roles with the CONFIDENCE to execute on the projects your boss is asking you to take on.

Imagine clients coming to you directly for their user research and design strategy needs, knowing that you have the RIGHT SKILLS to dig into and improve their user experience.
Man in meeting

Feel confident in your research skills.

Have you nailed down the foundations of human-centered design process, but lack the guidance to level up?

After taking our course, you’ll clearly understand the ins and outs of Design Research with the know-how to execute projects confidently.

If you’ve ever thought, “I’m in WAY over my head with this research project!”

You can feel self-assured knowing how to plan a research project, recruit participants, and analyze your data to create ACTIONABLE and insightful design deliverables.
Journey Map

Ditch the frustration.

Start doing the research you LOVE.

  • Learn the KEYS to Project Success

    How do you actually run a successful design research project? Roadblocks are inevitable, but we'll give you the strategies to set your project up for success!

  • Conduct Research Like a PRO

    Learn everything there is to know about conducting design research like a pro so you can get robust DATA-DRIVEN insights that lead to better business and design decisions.

  • Get your insights ACTED on!

    How do you make sure your insights report doesn't go to the place where PDFs go to die? With powerful design storytelling, your insights are valued, heard, and making an impact on real HUMANS.

Get Access to PRO Bonuses

These extras will take your design research to the NEXT level!

  • Complete Guide to Recruiting for Research

    Recruiting Workbook
    5 Copy-and-Paste Recruiting Scripts
    Recruiting Criteria Worksheet
    Sample Consent Form
    Sample Screening Questionnaire

    $1200 Value

  • Signature Research Planning Bundle

    Planning Secrets from Your Research Expert:

    Research Planning Checklist
    Sample Research Plan
    Sample Project Schedule

    $500 Value

  • Outwitly’s Interview Planning Blueprint

    Interview Planning Checklist
    50 Ready-to-Use Interview Questions
    Interview Script and Sample Protocol
    STELLAR Interview Planning Workbook

    $750 Value

Design Research Mastery

Module Breakdown

  1. 1
    • Welcome to Design Research Mastery!

    • Introduction to Design Research

    • Favorite Tools & Methods

    • Design Research Resources

    • DRM Empathy Map Template

    • DRM 50+ Design Research Methods & Tools Cheat Sheet

  2. 2
    • 1. How to Set Your Project Up for Success

    • 2. Project Scoping

    • 3. Project Timelines & Schedules

    • 4. Project Risks & Mitigation Strategies

    • 5. Project Charter & Governance

  3. 3
    • 1. Introduction to Research Planning

    • 2. Setting Effective Research Goals

    • 3. Choosing the Right Research Methods

    • 4. User Groups & Recruiting Criteria

    • 5. Recruiting Methods & Incentives

    • 6. Scripts & Screeners

    • 7. Participant Consent

    • 8. Draft Your Research Plan

    • 9. Recruiting Tips

    • BONUS: Signature Research Planning Bundle

    • BONUS: Complete Guide to Recruiting for Research

  4. 4
    • 1. Introduction to In-Depth Interviews

    • 2. Interview Planning

    • 3. How to Craft an Interview Protocol

    • 4. Interview Tips & Tricks

    • 5. Tools & Tech

    • BONUS: Outwitly's Interview Planning Blueprint

  5. 5
    • 1. Introduction to Observations

    • 2. AEIOU Framework

    • 3. Observation Planning

    • 4. How to Build a Field Kit

    • 5. Observation Tips & Tricks

    • 6. Tools & Tech

    • BONUS: Observation Fundamentals & Field Kit

  6. 6
    • 1. Introduction to Diary Studies

    • 2. How to Build a Diary Study

    • 3. Pre- and Post-Study Interviews

    • 5. Diary Study Tips & Tricks

    • 5. Participant Incentives

    • 6. Tools & Tech

    • BONUS: Dynamics of Diary Studies

  7. 7
    • 1. Introduction to Data Analysis & Synthesis

    • 2. Grounded Theory

    • 3. Data Analysis Tips & Tricks

    • 4. Develop Insights

    • 5. Tools & Tech

    • BONUS: Data Analysis (Dovetail)

    • BONUS: Data Analysis (Google Sheets)

  8. 8
    • 1. Introduction to Design Storytelling

    • 2. Co-Design & Feedback Workshops

    • 3. Insights Reporting

    • 4. Design Artifacts

    • 5. Design Storytelling Tips & Tricks

    • 6. Turning Insights into Action

Is Design Research Mastery Right for Me?

  • You’re tired of feeling imposter syndrome at work and are ready to become a design research expert.

  • You have a good understanding of best practices and the design process (maybe from school), but you haven't actually run a full-scale design research project in the REAL WORLD.

  • You were put in a position expected to know how to conduct design research but you need a little (or, a lot of!) help.

  • You wish you had the know-how and toolkit to immediately execute on service design projects to crush major research goals.

  • You want to transition into service design or design strategy from a UX/UI design role.

  • You want to become a UX or service design LEAD and need coaching on how to drive a design research project from start-to-finish.


What Sara's past students have to say...

By far the most effective course out there for design research!

Khuyen F.

While I had experience with conducting research in my master's degree, I wanted to get an understanding of running research projects in a corporate setting. Sara's modules were filled with in-depth practical tips on planning and conducting research projects, as well as how to code and analyze data to create actionable insights for internal stakeholders. Each module was full of useful information and templates that I will continue to reference well into the future. This is by far the most effective course out there for design research!

I got a UX job!

Jackie T.

Thank you so much for everything you taught me, because of your guidance on my team's project I got a UX job!

Design Research Mastery was a tremendous complement to my years of experience in design.

Talia K.

Outwitly Academy’s Design Research Mastery was a tremendous complement to my years of experience in design. It has kept my skills current in an ever evolving field and improved my ability to translate insights from research into the experience of clients and users through human centred design. The course format and pacing was able to adapt to my busy professional life driven by deadlines and client expectations. I would recommend this course to professionals who require flexibility to suit their schedule when looking to expand their knowledge and skills in design.

Thank you so much again for an incredible course.

Shiva M.
Program Graduate

I can't begin to tell you how much I learned from your class and how much I enjoyed all that we did. I wish we had more time to work with you and learn from you but I'm so thankful for the few months we had together and all we were able to do and learn!

Thanks for making online learning feel valuable and intuitive!

Justin L.

Thank you for a fantastic course. I am really happy with what I was able to get out of this course and will absolutely be looking into ways to further strengthen my UX/UI skills moving forward.

I can't wait to apply what I've learned in the field!

Gabriella S.

Thanks for giving me such a great intro to Service Design! Can’t wait to apply what I learned in the field! 😄

Sara’s Past Students Now Hold Positions Like…

  • UX Designer at Amazon

  • Senior UX Designer at Rogers Communications

  • Associate Design Director at McKinsey & Company

  • Director of Canadian Digital Services (Govt.)

  • Product Designer and UX Designer at BlackBerry

Don't Miss Out! There are more BONUSES.

If you're still on the fence, we've got you covered. In addition to our PRO bonuses, you'll also get:

  • Dynamics of Diary Studies

    Diary Study Check-List for onboarding and off-boarding participants
    Diary Study Editable Template

    $600 Value

  • Field Kit Fundamentals

    Observation Field Kit Template
    “What to Bring” Checklist
    “What to Expect” Document

    $1000 Value

  • LIVE Instructor Coaching Calls

    *Group coaching calls with Sara to troubleshoot and brainstorm any challenges and questions you have

    $2000 Value

    *Only available during live course launch.

Outwitly Academy is composed of lessons learned over a decade-long career.

I’m ready to let you in on my step-by-step process and unique toolkit so you too can start conducting exceptional design research.

I’m pulling the curtain back and giving you the insider knowledge.

Meet The Instructor

CEO of Outwitly Inc.

Sara Fortier

Hi! I’m Sara Fortier and I’ll be your instructor!

I’m the CEO and founder of Outwitly Inc., a UX and service design consultancy that helps organizations improve systemic issues surrounding user and customer experiences by applying human-centered and innovative practices used in product and service development.

I have 10+ years of experience as a design strategist, service designer, and UX designer. I got my start working for big tech companies and Fortune 500 clients like Apple, Microsoft, and AT&T. I’ve really done it all, from working in-house, to working as a consultant, to starting my own consultancy. I hold a Master of Interdisciplinary Design and a Bachelor of Industrial Design from Carleton University and continue to work closely with the University as a sessional lecturer and advisor to the School of Industrial Design.

I created Outwitly Academy to help UX professionals like you take your career to the next level using my expertise and experience gained in the trenches. In this course, I will give you the tools and systems I’ve developed and that we use every day at Outwitly.

Your instructor has worked for:


Frequently Asked Questions

  • I was just hired as a junior UX or service design researcher at my company. Is this course right for me?

    100% yes. Speaking from experience, your UX career is destined to call on the skills and know-how found in Design Research Mastery. What you learn at Outwitly Academy will only further accelerate your ability to crush it at work and help you move into a LEAD role!

  • I’m an experienced service designer/UX researcher, executing end-to-end service design projects for clients for more than 5 years. Will this course tell me anything I don’t already know?

    Simply put, YES! This course was designed for YOU, the intermediate to advanced professional. Design Research Mastery’s curriculum has been tailored to teach intermediate and advanced practitioners how to successfully run a design research project while avoiding common pitfalls and also dives into design storytelling to really help you master the communication of your research findings.

  • What are the coaching calls about?

    Your coaching calls will be a space for students to ask any questions pertaining to that week’s module AND an opportunity to access expert coaching on any design research or design strategy questions you’re coming up against in your own work. I’ve been in this industry for a long time, and would love to provide whatever insight I can to the next generation of kick-ass designers and researchers! Please note that we are not in a live launch period. Purchases made now do NOT include the Live Coaching Calls bonus.

  • How long will it take to complete the Design Research Mastery course?

    If followed to a tee, the Design Research Mastery curriculum will take 8 weeks to complete from start to finish. Depending on your learning style, available time/daily schedule, and other factors (sometimes life just gets in the way!), this timeline could vary.

  • What if my entire team wants to enroll in this course together?

    Reach out to us at academy@outwitly.com to see how we can help!

  • What happens if I don’t find value in this course?

    Call us biased, but we truly can’t imagine that happening! If this course doesn’t provide you with the value you were looking for, we are happy to fully refund you within 30 days of the course’s start date (March 1st). We ask that you include proof of completion of all modules, lessons, and activities associated with Design Research Mastery up until that point in order to have your refund approved.

  • Are payment plans available for this course?

    Absolutely! You are able to pay for the course in 6 monthly payments of $99 USD/month. You can also purchase the course for a one-time payment of $497 USD (our best deal!)

  • Which tools and programs are required for this course?

    We kept it nice and simple in the tech department for Design Research Mastery. Connect to your course platform on any device that allows you to search the world wide web!

My questions are all cleared up, I'm ready to enroll!


Your registration comes with over $6000 worth of bonus materials.

Don't Wait! Design Research Mastery won't be offered at such a low price again.

NOTE: We are not in a live launch period. Purchases made now do NOT include the Live Instructor Coaching Calls bonus.