Can’t decide between DBC and EDP?
Here’s my advice
I’ve developed my educational system around two radically different approaches to behavior change.
Most students should start with DBC before taking EDP. However, depending on your background, learning goals, and what you’re passionate about, EDP may be a better starting point.
The two classes in our training system
Here’s a more technical description of each course and recommendations on where to start.
How the courses differ
Whereas DBC is focused on classic behavioral science approaches that use external behavior change techniques, EDP is about the internal drivers of behavior. In DBC, you’ll learn simple psychological models and lots of principles; in EDP, you’ll learn about neurotransmitters, hormones and motivational systems along with numerous specific emotions.
Whether you use the external techniques in DBC or target the internal drivers in EDP, you’ll probably do well. But if you develop your knowledge in both areas, you’ll more likely do great.
For practical applications, DBC is structured around my standard approach to behavioral science projects, which I’ve perfectly mapped to popular approaches like design thinking, lean startup, design sprints and more. And with the step-by-step design process, you’ll have a proven formula you can use on your own, with teams, clients, or wherever. Also, I use standard prototyping tools from fields like information architecture, user experience design, graphic design, digital marketing, advertising, copy editing and more.
You’ll gain different practical skills in EDP, which is about developing emotion-focused design strategies, then fine-tuning your copy, visual design and polishing your mocks.
DBC will give you the psychological models, principles, process and tools. EDP will give you deep human insight and fine-tuning.
Which learning path should I take?
Here’s what I recommend, depending on your background and learning goals:
Beginners in digital media
If you are new to digital media, you should start with DBC as it will give you a solid understanding of the fundamentals and help you develop basic skills in prototyping tools. After completing DBC, EDP will be straightforward.
Professionals with no or a little experience in applying psychology
If you’re a working professional – but perhaps not that familiar with behavior change psychology or you primarily knowledge is cognitive psychology (common in HCI and UX training) – then I recommend DBC to give you a broad perspective and solid foundation. However, if neuroscience and emotions are more your experience, then you’ll probably be fine starting out in EDP.
Professionals with some or significant experience applying psychology
If you’ve been working for many years and are taking classes or reading extensively on applied psychology, you’ll appreciate DBC for the broad framework and practical format. However, you may find EDP to be more cutting-edge, and insightful. My most advanced students tell me that they like both workshops but that EDP gives them something truly unique.
Experienced behavioral scientists
For anyone with a strong background in psychology or behavioral science but limited experience in online applications, then the best starting point depends on your interests. If you have extensive education, scientific or work experience in behavior change psychology, you’ll probably know many of the principles we cover in DBC. However, you’ll learn how I’ve unified all the major fields into a simple system and you’ll gain new insights into the unique way standard principles operate in digital media. The content in EDP is cutting edge, vetted by myself and Dr. Restivo, a behavioral neuroscientist, so EDP will give you a broad tour of the research on how neurochemicals shape users’ cognitive, emotional and behavioral traits in cyberspace.