Tame Your Taxonomy

Learn tips and tools for creating structure with language.

Course Description

Is the word “taxonomy” intimidating? You bet, but taxonomy is a crucial structural element to consider for optimal cross channel information environments.

Take This Course If:

  • You want to understand how taxonomy is a keystone of any digital product.
  • You want to add user-centered taxonomy creation to your skill set.
  • You want to create strategic and well-researched taxonomies.
  • You want to integrate user testing into your taxonomy creation.
  • You want to understand how to apply a taxonomy cross-channel.

Who Is This For?

This workshop is geared towards individual practitioners, or teams of IA and UX practitioners. While this class is targeted toward beginning to mid-level professionals, those with more experience can deepen their understanding in this workshop. Participants in the class do not need any previous knowledge of taxonomies. A basic understanding of information architecture, user experience, or content strategy would be helpful.

Upon completion of Taxonomy 101, you will be able to:

  • Create a user-centered cross-channel taxonomy for use in IA and UX work.

Recommended Reading
Card Sorting – Designing Usable Categories by Donna Spencer
Rosenfeld Media, 2009

Mental Models: Aligning Design Strategy with Human Behavior
 by Indy Young
Rosenfeld Media, 2008

The Accidental Taxonomist 
Heather Hedden
Information Today, Inc. 2010

Information Architecture for the World Wide Web: Designing Large-Scale Web Sites by 
Peter Morville and Louis Rosenfeld
O’Reilly, 2008

Pervasive Information Architecture: Designing Cross-Channel User Experiences
 by Andrea Resmini and Luca Rosati
Morgan Kaufmann, 2011

Course Structure

In this fun, informal, beginning/mid-level practitioner-focused workshop, instructors will present and facilitate:

Guided Taxonomy Development Activities: The majority of the session will be devoted to hands-on time working with a practical framework. Small groups of participants will roll up their sleeves and try their hand at architecting a user-sensitive cross-channel taxonomy for a fun, fictitious business.

Tool Demo: Facilitator will highlight easy-to-use resources for testing taxonomies with users.

Application of Taxonomy: Groups will practice applying their newly-minted taxonomy to cross-channel strategies and will learn how to recognize and leverage opportunities to strengthen the business proposition.

While this course can be tailored to your specific needs, some of the topics we typically cover include: identifying terms, creating controlled vocabularies, using strategy to frame the taxonomic approach, doing user research and testing taxonomies, card sorting, leveraging SEO and SME expertise, considering template approaches, creating governance plans, and applying taxonomy across your digital and non-digital information environments.

We Customize Training to Your Needs

Workshops can be tailored in many ways—including group size, time constraints, budget, desired outcomes, team skill level, learning styles, and product stage. If you don’t see what you are looking for, please let us know. We’d love to come up with something that best meets your needs.