Full day training course

Information Architecture (IA Day 1)

Organize and structure information to improve findability and discoverability

The Information Architecture (IA), or organization, of a website or application is critical, because it determines whether or not users are successful in finding desired information and completing tasks. This course introduces the core components of a good IA, as well as essential IA design methods and strategies.

"In just one day, this course provided me with actionable items I will use to both improve and add onto the IA of my company's website. The course also gave me a new perspective on how to analyze my website and the most important aspects I should focus on improving."

Laura Normile
HD Supply Facilities Maintenance

Topics Covered

Topics Covered

  • How to explain why information architecture (IA) is important for your website or application
  • Why a good IA can save your company time and money during and after development
  • Return on investment (ROI) of information architecture
  • Essential logic and concepts you need to build a useful, usable, and extensible information architecture
  • Five components of information architecture
    • Structure types: Hierarchy, linear, and web
    • Organization schemes: Topic, task, format, audience, alphabet, time, geographical, attributes, tags, and popularity
    • Label names: Being specific vs. concise
    • Search: Designing search for content to be found
    • Logic: Taxonomy and metadata, when and why they're needed
  • Documenting information architecture
    • Content inventories
    • Site maps
  • Evaluating information architecture
    • Identifying issues and potential solutions
    • Measuring baseline performance
    • Testing structure, schemes, and labels
  • Designing information architecture
    • Mental models and scenarios
    • Domain modeling and task flow sketching
    • Card sorting method
    • Iterative testing method



This course is an interactive lecture. A series of in-depth exercises let you apply and practice new principles and techniques, while staying grounded in the research that supports them.

In groups, you will analyze a website’s information architecture by considering the site’s target audiences and top tasks, evaluating the organization scheme and existing structure, and documenting a new structure for the site.

The course also includes:

  • Findings from our own usability studies, including eyetracking
  • Videos from user testing showing people's behavior in response to a design
  • Screenshots of designs that work and don’t work, and why
  • Opportunities to ask questions and get answers

Attendee Feedback

"This course really sparks ways to solve complex IA challenges."
"Fantastic instructor — very knowledgeable and approachable, comprehensive." Karina Sekanaka, AFK
"As an introduction to IA, this course has been brilliant. My comprehension of what is involved in IA and how it ties in to my other UX responsibilities has been improved vastly. I've now got the foundations to drive good IA in my business and talk about why it's important."
"It was very useful from the perspective of understanding detailed information and application website design connected with IA."
"Excellent foundation in IA and how selecting appropriate structures is just the beginning. Provides insight into how all aspects of IA effect many areas of user experience and success." Gabriel Hough, PCBB
"If you want to make your web development more useable and attractive to users, take this course."
"Excellent foundation in IA and how selecting appropriate structures is just the beginning. Provides insight into how all aspects of IA effect many areas of user experience and success." Gabriel Hough, PCBB

Companion Course

Companion Course

Navigation Design (IA Day 2) is a companion course to Information Architecture (IA Day 1). Each course can be taken independently. Navigation Design (IA Day 2) covers:

  • How to approach navigation design...after you've structured your content and features
  • Key navigation evaluation and design criteria
  • Components that support structure, communicate accurate mental maps, visualize paths and provide nodes
  • What works and what doesn't as obvserved in testing



Garrett Goldfield

Garrett Goldfield is a User Experience Specialist at Nielsen Norman Group with 20 years of practical experience. At Nielsen Norman Group, Goldfield has consulted for clients in a broad range of industries, including e-commerce, automotive, health care, financial, media, telecommunications, education, art and non-profits, as well as highly specialized B2B sites. Read more about Garrett

Katie Sherwin

Katie Sherwin is a User Experience Specialist with Nielsen Norman Group. She specializes in helping organizations utilize principles of user-centered design and strategic communication to achieve their goals. Read more about Katie

Kathryn Whitenton

Kathryn Whitenton is a Senior User Experience Specialist with the Nielsen Norman Group. She works with clients to evaluate the user experience and information architecture of websites in a variety of industries including technology, telecommunications, and media, as well as corporate intranets. She has conducted usability research, eyetracking user research, and studies of users on mobile devices in the United States, Europe, Asia, and Australia. Her user studies have included general audiences as well as specific consumer types, business segments, children, and seniors. Read more about Kathryn

Currently Scheduled

Currently Scheduled:

Apply this course toward UX Certification