Laboratoria: Code That Transforms

Laboratoria is an international, educational nonprofit where underprivileged young women can learn HTML, CSS, and Javascript, and then put their skills to work all over the world. Founded in 2014 in Lima, Peru, enrollment spread quickly to Chile and Mexico. 

Cooper on the Digital Frontier

By using Cooper’s flagship text, About Face, to power their education, Laboratoria creates junior front-end developers who find work at organizations from IBM to Cinepapaya. Over 400 young women have completed the training. With a job placement rate of over 75%, graduates often triple their income in the process.

Laboratorio Hackathon

Laboratoria team and students after the hackathon at the Talent Fest

Finding Design Principles

Lalo Gonzalez had a long list of links, videos, and books to curate before designing Laboratoria’s UX curriculum. “Among the books I considered, there was one that stood out: About Face from Cooper,” he said.

Laboratoria draws from About Face to teach the fundamentals that lead to great digital design. The curriculum begins with the four main reasons that digital products fail, and moves on to Goal-Directed Design and the importance of balancing user needs and business interests. 

“One of the most important lessons in our UX class is the one on user personas,” said Lalo. “Cooper’s book is the most thorough resource available on this subject.”

Taking on the World

In 2017, Laboratoria will offer two program paths: Full Stack Javascript and UX Design. By 2020, they aim to graduate over 10,000 young women with a job placement rate of 85% and an income growth of 400% for the average alumna.

Laboratoria Map

Laboratoria’s work is catching on. Global organizations like Google, Facebook, Linkedin, Microsoft, and Telefonica have joined in the movement, and even President Barack Obama and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg have taken notice.

Together with Cooper, Laboratoria is bringing the power of digital design skills to the corners of the world. “About Face, along with Cooper’s advice on our UX curriculum, helped us get started. I consider About Face to be the most potent academic resource available on UX and Interaction Design.” said Lalo. “We hope to have a long relationship with Cooper.”

The Editors

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