I will be attending a 1 day design workshop about UI problem solving soon. There's not much information on the workshop itself. So, I am unsure what to expect.

For those of you who have participated in design workshops before:

  • What are some standard, fail-safe, materials you bring with you? A laptop, ipad or notebook?

  • Should attendees be expected to have read up on the topic of the workshop in most instances? Or do most workshops assume no prior knowledge about the specific topic promoted to be covered?

  • Should attendees expect to be performing design work during a workshop? Or are workshops generally more lecture/discussion-based around principles and techniques?

I'm seeking answers based upon experiences with past workshops.


A workshop would typically imply you will be expected to perform some tasks, otherwise it would be a "seminar", "lecture", or "presentation"

If there are required materials they should be listed among the information about the workshop.

From there, it's all guesswork. Some workshops will have everything you need provided. Whether that's merely a pencil and paper or a computer station greatly depends upon the company presenting the workshop and the topics to be covered. If everything is theory and principles, it may mean all you'll be doing is some wire framing on paper with pen, you may not need anything more than that. Certainly no one here would know.

What I would bring:

  • A Laptop with appropriate software loaded (but really expect it to not be needed)
  • A notebook and writing instruments (to take notes)
  • A voice recorder (or app on the phone and charge the phone)

If you know the person facilitating the workshop, you can do a bit of research to see if they've written anything you may be able to read. Although probably not imperative, it may give you a bit of a head start.

Most of the sub-category (as in area within a profession) workshops I've attended in the past expect you to have general knowledge of the field - as in, jargon, terminology, basic software awareness, that sort of thing. The facilitator will often speak in technical terms/jargon which is common for the industry, and failing to understand that can cause you to struggle more than you should (or continually ask for clarification). Same goes for overall software knowledge. You should have some idea of the general software used in the industry by professionals and have a working knowledge of it, not necessarily at an "expert" level, but at least be familiar with it.

As for what you will be doing.... any guess here is as good as yours. In fact, we have even less information than you do.

  • Could you help improve the question? I've already asked the 3 questions as generally as possible, I only included info about my specific story as 'extra' info.
    – Summer
    Jun 5 '18 at 10:56
  • Usually if some workshops are planned in the invitation/agenda they state "materials will be provided (but number of participants is limited) / all guest are invited but you need to bring your own hard/software / knowledge of X is needed but knowledge of Y is not" Jun 5 '18 at 12:03

You can't really know more than what they already announced about the event, so:

  • take your phone, tablet or just a notebook. not sure if a laptop would be of any use, unless there is actual work to be done by the participants
  • do some reading on the topic if you're directly interested or intend to ask questions after the presentation. otherwise you can always research after the event
  • some workshops will provide a printed or electronic copy of the actual presentation during or after the event, in which case you may actually not need to take notes

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.