Course Description

DES 166: Human Centered Design (4)

Studio—6 hours; Prerequisite: DES001, DES 014, and DES 050 or consent of instructor. Priority given to Design majors.

Throughout this course, students explore the tools and mindsets required to create design inspired by user needs. The course will give students a comprehensive understanding of a human-centered approach to problem solving (often referred to as design thinking). During the course, students will work on real world projects that will help them to develop an understanding of design thinking and various methods of creative problem solving. The course will include fundamental readings in design thinking, interactive design methods and processes, as well as hands-on projects. Students will learn how to conduct ethnographic research, develop ways to reframe challenges based on user-needs, run and participate in effective brainstorms, gain experience with rapid prototyping and user testing. In addition to design specific skills, they will also acquire mindsets that help them address problems in creative ways, synthesizing large amounts of unstructured data, flexible thinking, the ability to navigate ambiguity, the ability to formulate/reformulate challenges based on user insight, idea conceptualization, and storytelling.

The course is broken into three design challenges, each of increasing duration and complexity.
 

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