Courses: 2-day workshop | 2-day health training | Corporate training

Persuasive Psychology for Interactive Design
(2-day workshop)

Practical ▪ Scientific ▪ Easy


About this course

If you’re looking to design more engaging digital technologies and want quick results, then this course is for you. Over two days, Brian Cugelman, PhD will show you how to design more engaging websites, social media profiles, mobile apps, and online ads.

During the course, Brian will introduce you to the key principles of persuasive design, using clear visual examples, and hands-on exercises to reinforce your understanding and new skills. Offering a blend of scientific principles, concrete examples, and practical exercises, you will get on the fast-track toward designing technologies that are more engaging and influential.



Workshop content

During the course, we will cover these modules:

  • MODULE 1. Persuasive psychology and technology
  • MODULE 2. Influence and change
  • MODULE 3. Digital media impacts on behavior
  • MODULE 4. How people interact with technology
  • MODULE 5. Evidence-based design and optimization
  • MODULE 6. Auditing the ingredients that make technology persuasive
  • MODULE 7. The persuasive communication model
  • MODULE 8. Source (credibility)
  • MODULE 9. Source message
  • MODULE 10. Audience factors
  • MODULE 11. Media selection impacts
  • MODULE 12. Message expression and interpretation
  • MODULE 13. Feedback expression and interpretation
  • MODULE 14. Audience feedback
  • MODULE 15. Social and physical context
  • MODULE 16. Identifying influence ingredients
  • MODULE 17. Recipes for digital engagement and selling
  • MODULE 18. Optimization psychology and research

Hard science made easy and practical

Although this is a science-based course, we’ve tailored the content to the needs of working professionals who need to know what works. In this course, Brian has removed the hard science, and presents the content at a conceptual level, with case studies, examples, and practical exercises.

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Skills and knowledge you’ll gain

By the end of this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Build more persuasive websites, social media profiles, ads, and mobile apps
  • Identify the factors that make digital technologies persuasive
  • Critically assess your existing technologies and identify opportunities to make them more engaging
  • Understand how to design more engaging graphics, content, and interactive interfaces
  • Explain why one design is better or worse than another, in terms of its potential impact on users
  • Possess a pipeline of new ideas on how to improve your current and future digital products
  • Reverse engineer the factors that make your competitors’ technologies successful. Then build something better!

  • Save time and money by applying scientifically validated engagement principles to your next project


Who is this course is for?

This course is designed for digital professionals who want guidance on science-based design and industry best practices. This course is ideally suited to:
  • Interactive designers (UI/UX lovers)
  • Digital marketers and strategists
  • Optimization and conversion specialists
  • Product managers and project managers
  • Web and mobile developers


This is an intermediate level course. Participants must possess an understanding of interactive media and should have experience in interactive design, digital marketing, online communications or advertising.

Obtain exclusive resources

By participating, you will get a copy of the Persuasive Design Toolkit, which will give you a competitive advantage. The kit includes:

  • All slides used in the training
  • Persuasive Design Toolkit (exclusive resource)
  • Exercise workbook
  • Oversized printouts for exercises
  • Templates/wireframes of persuasive architectures
  • Certificate of participation for your resume

Your instructor: Brian Cugelman, PhD

Brian Cugelman, PhD

Got a question?
Give me a shout. I’m happy to help out.

I’m proud to admit that this course reflects my best effort, as a scientist, digital media specialist, and teacher.

As a scientist, this course draws on my doctoral research on the science of online engagement, which I completed with one of the world’s leading Internet research groups, and which was subsequently published in the world’s top scientific journal in my field. The Pentagon liked my research so much, that they invited me to address their cyber influence project.

As a digital media specialist, this course draws on my long career building digital products and running online campaigns for companies, non-profit organizations, and government. I ran my first online social marketing campaign back in 1998, and soon after, I joined the United Nations to run the world’s first Internet-driven United Nations year campaign, which was recognized by the General Assembly. To this day, I still build interactive technologies, run online marketing campaigns, and use research to design digital products that make an impact.

As a teacher, I have spent years developing innovative ways to train professionals in how to apply scientific principles to design higher impact digital products and campaigns. Science has so much to teach digital professionals, yet this knowledge is often locked up in cryptic jargon and complex scientific terms. My top goal as a teacher has been to translate the best scientific knowledge into an educational package that is easy to understand and extremely practical.

If you have any questions, please contact me. I look forward to talking.

Call: +1 (416) 921-2055
Email: brian (at)

Connect with me via LinkedIn

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Stay tuned for courses across the US this fall.

We’ve trained these organizations

Some of our happy customers 

What they’re saying about Dr. Cugelman

Great workshop! I enjoyed the training and it was very useful. We will start implementing some of the ideas in our projects.
Alex Aranda, Senior User Experience Designer, Samsung Electronics
What seals the deal, is how these factors have been formed into a tool for analysis, and structured around iteration for increased understanding over time.
Robert Mackie, Senior Interaction Designer, Samsung Electronics
I found the tone and content excellent! Excellent presentation and some very good information!
Natalie Campbell, Web Designer, Department of National Defence (Canada)
Persuasive design course was very engaging from beginning to the end. A lot of good examples and ‘recipes’. The toolkit is very useful when building wireframes. Can’t wait to start applying these theories to my next project!
Swidja Nikke, Communications Advisor, Government of Canada, Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario
Toronto is fortunate to have such a knowledgeable resource as Brian, and I highly recommend his one- or two-day sessions to digital media professionals who want to grow their subject matter expertise in the art and science of persuasive design.
Judah J. Gould, UX Specialist - Information Architect
“Enjoying the Psychology of Social Media session with @cugelman. Mirrors a lot of the reading I’ve been doing and adds more. #pcto2012″ and “One of the best presentations at #pcto2012: Social Psychology of Social Media via @cugelman”
Dave Fleet, Senior Vice President, Edelman


We’d be grateful if you could help spread the word!

Terms and conditions

Cancellation and refund policy: Registrants who cancel their reservation 14 calendar day prior to the start date, will receive a 100% refund. Registrants who cancel their reservation 13 to 7 days prior to the start date, can elect to receive a 50% refund or 100% credit towards future training. Registrants who cancel their reservation 6 days prior to the start date, will not be refunded but can elect to receive a 75% credit towards future training. In the case of an emergency, AlterSpark reserves the right to cancel this course up to 7 days prior to the start. If AlterSpark needs to cancel the course, all registrants will receive a 100% refund. AlterSpark will not be held liable for any expenses incurred by registrants.

Licence to use exclusive design resources: All participants will receive exclusive persuasive design resources, including the Persuasive Design Toolkit, which are not available to the public. Each paying participant may use these resources to support commercial or non-commercial projects. All of these tools and resources are copy written and licensed for sharing with up to 4 persons within each participant’s organization. However, usage is subject to these restrictions. The course content and tools may not be reworked, repackaged, rebranded, distributed, or used to build derivative educational products or design resources. Any project or work that makes use of these resources must give credit to the source.

Copyright: All course materials are copy written by Brian Cugelman, PhD and AlterSpark Corp. Participants agree not to rework, repackage, rebrand, distribute, or use the lectures or content to build derivative educational products or design resources. Participants agree not to use any equipment to record the course, through audio or video.