15 Free Ebooks about User Experience and Interface Design

I have collected 15 free ebooks about UX and interface design, including some best selling books which are definitely worth reading. Not only are these free ebooks pretty good reads but perhaps I could save a small rainforest as well. Please let me know if you have read other great free ebooks lately.


Search User Interfaces by Marti A. Hearst (2009)

If you want to design innovative search user interfaces, you need this book close at hand at all times.

Web Style Guide by Patrick J. Lynch and Sarah Horton (1999)

A style guide for the interface with real long-run value, showing us deep principles of design rather than simply fashion and technology.

Designing Interfaces – Patterns for Effective Interaction Design by Jenifer Tidwell (2006)

Anyone who’s serious about designing interfaces should have this book on their shelf for reference.

Designing Mobile Interfaces by Steven Hoober and Eric Berkman (2011)

This practical guide teaches you the core principles for designing effective mobile user interfaces, and helps you get started by providing more than 40 proven UI patterns for mobile websites and applications.

Mental Models in Human-Computer Interaction by John M. Carroll and Judith Reitman Olson (1987)

Research Issues About What the User of Software knows.

Just Ask: Integrating Accessibility Throughout Design by Shawn L. Henry (2007)

A focus on accessibility during the entire user-centered design process.

Converting The Believers by Usereffect (2008)

Turn believers into buyers and maximize your website’s ROI. Learn how to use analytics, usability and testing to systematically improve online sales.

Task-Centered User Interface Design by Clayton Lewis and John Rieman (1994)

This report is based on 8 series of usability studies with users in 4 countries reporting how they actually used a broad variety of websites and apps on a range of mobile devices, including touch phones and smartphones from many vendors.

User Centered Design – The Fable of the User-Centered Designer by David Travis (2009)

After reading this 40-page fable, you’ll understand the framework of user-centred design and know how to apply it to your own design project.

234 Tips and Tricks for Recruiting Users as Participants in Usability Studies by Deborah Hinderer Sova and Jacob Nielsen (2003)

This report tells you how to set up and manage a recruiting program, how to get the right users for specific tests, and how to deal with the users you have recruited.

Introduction to Good Usability by Peterpixel (2008)

A collection of Peter’s posts about design guidelines in PDF format.

UX Storytellers – Connecting the dots by 42 UX masterminds (latest update 2011)

42 UX masterminds tell personal stories of their exciting lives as User Experience professionals.

A Hitchhikers Guide to the Obvious: Web Usability 101 by Squiz (2009)

The design best practices for usability and how they can positively impact your bottom line. The paper also gives concrete guidelines on how to test for usability on a shoestring budget.

Designing the Mobile User Experience by Barbara Ballard (2007)

Gain the knowledge and tools to deliver compelling mobile phone applications.

Human Computer Interaction Lecture Notes by Dr. Keith Andrews (2011)

These lecture notes have evolved since he first started teaching human-computer interaction at Graz University of Technology in 1993 and have benefitted from his teaching courses on user interface design at FH Technikum Kärnten in Villach, web usability and advanced user interfaces at FH Joanneum.

Bonus: Research Based Web Design & Usability Guidelines by Usability.gov

Throughout your Web design or redesign project, you should take advantage of what is already known about best practices for each step of the process. The Research-Based Web Design and Usability Guidelines, compiled through an extensive process of research and review, bring you those best practices.

Editorial note: I have also collected some free ebooks about Usability. Are ebooks not your cup of tea and you prefer to smell real paper, then maybe you can have a look at my UX book collection.

About the author

I'm the creator and editor of paulolyslager.com, a blog about on Web Design, User Experience and Usability. Currently I'm working as UX Manager for a leading supplier of nutrients and supplements to the European market based in Berlin, Germany. Follow me @paulolyslager or google+.
My Book Collection on UX
My Book Collection on UX

People who have read this article, also liked reading...

31 responses to “15 Free Ebooks about User Experience and Interface Design”

  1. Lisa says

    …and if you like these you’ll LOVE this list!
    20 FREE eBooks you need to design an outstanding user experience

    Thanks Paul :)

  2. Nice list. I’ve added some to my reading list.

    *And you went into the future to do this! ;) (check your article date)

  3. Wouter Slager says

    The slides of the Human Computer Interaction Lecture Notes by Dr. Keith Andrews (2011) can also be downloaded at the course website: http://courses.iicm.tugraz.at/hci/

  4. Hi Wouter, thanks for letting us know. In addition I have found another free e-book called “Six Circles – An Experience Design Framework”, which you can download on the website of UX Magazine. I haven’t read it but it looks promising!

  5. Thanks for compiling this list of UX ebooks that are – FREE! A few of these were on my “to buy” list.

  6. Krishna says

    I was just looking for this kind of list. Thanks for your efforts in compiling. Bookmarked it

  7. Michael says

    Hey Paul,

    As we’re working to build our application, many of these ebooks will become super-helpful, so we’re not stuck with a bad user experience. Thanks!

  8. Hi Michael,

    You’re welcome. Good to hear that these ebooks will do some good to your application. Best of luck with the build.

  9. Cindy says

    Nice read. Loved your blog. Thanks for sharing this, downloaded a couple of them.

  10. James says

    Thanks for a great resource.


  11. Binyomin says

    Hey, I am new to UX.
    Any tips which book to read first? And second?
    Uncle B

  12. Hi Uncle B,

    To give you an idea of some of the best books out there, you can have a look at my UX Book Collection. To answer your specific question, it really depends on what you are looking for.

    For a great introduction, you can’t go wrong with ‘Don’t make me Think‘ by Steve Krug.

    If you are looking for something more practical, go for ‘Undercover User Experience Design‘ by Cennyd Bowles and James Box.

    When you’re interested in a bit of both, including processes and guidelines, you could go for ‘The UX Book‘, a comprehensive textbook.

    I hope this will make your decision a bit easier! Enjoy the reading!

  13. padhu.snp says

    Hi Paul,
    i wand ui ux book any books are there pls refer……….


  14. Hi Padhu,

    If you are looking for ebooks, I can recommend my post titled ‘Free Ebooks about Usability‘. If you are looking for other books, you might want to have a look at my book collection on UX.
    I sure you will find something to your liking.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this.

Yay! You've decided to leave a comment. That's fantastic! Please keep in mind that comments are moderated and rel="nofollow" is in use. So, please do not use a spammy keyword or else it will be deleted. Let's have a personal and meaningful conversation instead. Thanks for dropping by!

(will not be published)