What is a Local Chapter?
UXPA International chapters offer people with the same interest to come together regularly to share their experience and to encourage each other in the user experience (UX) profession. The focus is on local activities connecting UX professionals with each other. Business meetings with invited speakers, usability lab tours, and UX roundtables - where you can bring interesting UX problems to be solved jointly - are just some examples of what a local chapter may offer. Above all, local chapters provide a handy and convenient network for UX professionals.
A local chapter is frequently a group of UXPA International members who live or work in a particular locality and who, as a matter of geographic convenience, organize themselves to cooperatively promote the goals of UXPA International. The local chapter serves as a focal point for its members to share professional experiences and provide educational opportunities in the UX field. Local UXPA International chapters offer several benefits to members.
What is a Special Interest Group?
A Special Interest Group (SIG) assembles a group of UXPA International members to address a significant and targeted common interest that benefits our UX profession as a whole and supports the mission of UXPA International. A SIG provides activities that connect UX professionals with each other. The SIGs may offer meetings with invited speakers, usability lab tours and roundtables locally, and online discussions where interesting usability problems can be solved jointly.
A Platform for Networking
One of the greatest resources for professional and personal development is to meet with colleagues in the same field. You gain new information on state-of-the-art technology, access to others' experiences and knowledge, and the chance to broaden your insights.
Chapter meetings and activities allow you to expand your knowledge of UX. Both local chapters and SIGs bring continuous educational opportunities closer to home and provide a bridge between annual UXPA International conferences. It is also possible to organize local mentor programs as a way for younger members to grow throughout our profession.
Exchange of Services and Contributing to UXPA International
UXPA International chapters and SIGs offer the possibilities of exchanging both professional experiences and services, such as reviewing each other's papers and conference contributions, and also serve as a greenhouse for new ideas that can be implemented globally by UXPA International, and provide the Association with potential new members to our Board of Directors.
A Creative and Stimulating Environment
Design contests and brainstorming exercises are fun and stimulating ways to learn more about UX and the other UXPA International members. Local chapters and SIGs often organize activities such as usability lab tours and site visits to interesting work places (e.g., air traffic control centers and high-tech manufacturing plants). Learning more about usability issues in these "extreme" working conditions will often give you good ideas to bring back home.