The five elements of UX design is a framework of steps that UX designers take to turn an idea into a working product. The five elements are, from bottom to top: strategy, scope, structure, skeleton, and surface. Think of these as a set of five layers, where each layer is dependent on the one below it.
Strategy: The bottom layer is strategy, where you lay a foundation of your design goals. These goals are based on user needs and the business objectives for the product.
Scope: The next layer is scope, where you determine the type of product you’re building. At this point, you will consider the kind of features and content you want to include in the product.
Structure: The middle layer is structure. Here, you’ll figure out how to organize your design and how you want users to interact with the product.
Skeleton: The skeleton is the layout of the product. Just like the layout of our bones shapes our skin, the skeleton layer details how your design works – and like a skeleton, users won’t directly see its inner-workings.
Surface: The top layer, surface, represents how the product looks to the user. The surface represents the interface that users view and interact with. Think of the surface like the clothes or makeup you wear that are visible to the outside world.