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Learning a new design system with copywork

I’m now 2 weeks into my new role as an Interaction Designer with the Cabinet Office and I’ve been looking at ways to practice using the Gov.UK Design System.

Without having any previous experience of applying it, I’m keen to get a bit more exposure to it – to learn some of the details/rules, the names for components etc.

Learn by doing

It’s become clearer and clearer to me that this is how I learn best.

I can soak up theory like a sponge.

But if I don’t put it to practical use – it almost feels like a wasted effort.

Finding ways to put things into practice isn’t always practical, or easy – but I’m making more effort to find those opportunities.

Plenty of examples to copy

If you’re not familiar with the term copywork, it’s essentially the practice of copying existing designs and using that process to analyse the design as you go.

It’s a reasonable method for learning/trying new things.

But it’s also got the potential to be able to develop some digital muscle memory with new tools/resources.

Fortunately, the design system is used on a massive range of UK Government sites so finding examples to replicate using the system is pretty easy.

After all, I’ve already had to use a number of these platforms as a citizen!

Levelling up with Figma

Not content with trying to improve just one thing, I’m also going to be doing this copywork using Figma.

What better way to learn a new tool than by getting stuck into using it for a project?