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Government Digital Service launches Content Design course on FutureLearn

Government Digital Service (@GDSTeam) has launched an ‘Introduction to Content Design’ course available to join now on leading social learning platform, @FutureLearn 

The course commences on Monday 18 May and will run for four weeks, requiring about 4 hours of study per week.

The course has been launched as an open course with unlimited spaces for learners following the large number of applications received for its closed, first iteration which was piloted last year. The first run received over 1,000 comments across course steps and the open run will likely see an even greater level of engagement.

Introduction to Content Design’ is aimed at new content designers or those who work in other roles that involve content design. For example, communications roles can involve elements of content design within some organisations. 

The course will cover what content design is, what skills learners will need as a content designer, user needs, user research techniques, prototyping, writing in plain English, and designing accessible content. The course will also help learners test and evaluate the success of their content. The aim of the course is to equip learners with the knowledge and skills to create design content that gives users the information they need quickly and allows them to reach their goals. 

Mary Whiteside, Content Community Lead from Government Digital Services, said: “At GDS we want to build the most digitally skilled public sector in the world, and this course focuses on raising the level of content design – one of the user-centred design professions. We’ll be doing more online learning over the next weeks and months to share good practice and to help build communities of learning.”

Nigel Smith, MD of Courses and Learning at, said: 

“During this uncertain time, many people’s roles are shifting and professional upskilling is a great way to stand out. Having a sound understanding of the principles of content design can be beneficial across a wide range of roles so we are excited to be helping GDS deliver a scalable, online course to maximise the reach and impact of their content. Through this open online course, GDS will be able to offer a uniquely social online experience, bringing together people from diverse professions from all around the world.”

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