Kies de Nederlandse taal
Course module: 201400118
Designing for Specific Users
Course info
Course module201400118
Credits (ECTS)15
Course typeModule
Language of instructionEnglish
Contact persondr. J. van Dijk
PreviousNext 5
J.F.H. Beeloo
dr. L.M. Bochev-van der Burgh
S. Borsci
Lecturer R.G.J. Damgrave
Contactperson for the course
dr. J. van Dijk
Academic year2016
Starting block
Application procedureYou apply via OSIRIS Student
Registration using OSIRISYes
Learning goals

Cognitive Ergonomics:
  1. Describe basic principles from cognitive psychological theory related to perception, action, attention, memory and decision making       
  2. Name design principles related to human cognitive strengths and weaknesses 
  3. Apply cognitive design principles to simple design problems.

Design Sketching 3:
  1. execute a realistic design case from business where basic drawing skills are used as a designtool
  2. use the basic drawingskills (construction, perspective, toning, distintness of materials, ability to create dynamic sketchlines) on a sketch tablet with associated software 
  3. integrate four different basic techniques (creative brainstorming, using a CAD-model, using a foam model and integrating scenario's ) in the design process
  4. communicate the design process with the client, teacher, student assistents and with fellow students via a digital community.
  1. define and interpret the most important terms from probability and statistics, and state the most important properties of probability theory
  2. calculate probabilities of events, expected values and variances for simple probability models 
  3. construct confidence intervals for population fractions and population means given a sample
  4. test hypotheses about population fractions, population means, and population variances given a sample
  5. use the software package SPSS  to calculate the items mentioned under aims 2, 3 and 4 for a large sample
Project Design for Specific Users:
  1. Set up and manage a human-centered design project to develop a new product concept focusing on a specific user group.
  2. Involve prospective end-users into the design process throughout the entire project (build up a working relation)
  3. Design a new product concept that is meaningful and usable for the intended user, in accord with his characteristics, his activities and his context-of-practice
  4. Apply appropriate user research techniques, including desk research, observation of practice, interviews, co-design workshop and evaluation of experience prototypes
  5. Apply an iterative design process where problem definition, research, design and  prototyping co-evolve
  6. Reflect on the value of research in design processes
  7. Search, retrieve and evaluate the quality of project-relevant academic information sources
  8. Create and apply design representations that aid in stakeholder involvement, highlighting the concrete experience of use in context (e.g. via storyboards, scenario's, lo-fi experience prototypes, theatre enactment)
This module centers on the tradition of Human Centred Design and in particular it is targeted at designing a product for- and together with, a specific group of intended end-users of a product, a group of people that may be quite unlike oneself. The main project will ask of a student design team to proceed through a participatory, human-centered design process, researching and involving potential end-users, iterating design concepts and experience prototoypes, involving users into the design process and delivering a meaningful and usable product for a specific group of people in a specific use-context. In the accompanying course Cognitive Ergonomics students will learn the most important cognitive characteristics of people (both their 'skills' and their 'challenges') relevant for designing user-friendly product(-system)s. In Design Sketching 3 students will further develop their skills for the designerly development and visual communicatation of ideas and concepts, both in 2d and in 3d. Next to the development of tooling and skills this also means to learn how to use sketching explicitly as a generative technique (as a way to develop ideas and concepts) and to create artifacts that help to evaluate concepts and engage in collaborative reflection with project stakeholders (for example, end-users and  the main client). The statistics course, finally, provides a solid methodological basis needed for learning how to set up a quantitative evaluation of user-data (e.g. using questionnaires or quantitative use observations).

Cognitive Ergonomics:
Cognitive ergonomics is based oncognitve psychological theories on how people perceive, construct and act in the world. You will learn how people remember, act, think, find their way, make a decision and communicate. You will learn how you can make relevant improvements in efficiency and safety of design by applying well known cognitive guidelines on the design of a technical system or product.

Design Sketching 3:
The basic drawing skills of Design Sketching 1 & 2 are congregated in Design Sketching 3, where the students have to perform an assignment which is completely executed on a sketch tablet with the associated software. The course is divided in two parts:
The first part focuses on the application of the basic drawing skills (perspective, construction, toning, distinctness of materials, ability to create dynamic sketch lines etc) on a sketch tablet. Furthermore the students learn to become familiar with the sketch tablet and the associated software. The second part aims to use the newly developed skills of digital sketching as a design tool in the design process. In the course the students are working with realistic cases from business, where they have to (re)design a product within four weeks based on a design brief. In the design process the students have to integrate four basic techniques (creative brainstorming, using CAD models, using a foam model and integrating scenario’s). During the course a digital community is used to discuss the work with clients, teachers, colleagues and student assistants.

A large amount of research deals with data (for example, results from surveys or measurements). This data is realised, among others, by 'coincidence'[??]. This means that a single ? has little predictive value. However, if one considers large amounts of data one may discover relations (?). (For example, if one considers 1000 randomly chosen babies, then about half of these is female.)

Project Design for Specific Users:
The overall module has Designing for Specific Users as its theme and this project centers on this main theme. Students develop competencies needed in order to design human-centered product concepts targeted at specific users groups. This means students learn to empathize with the user group, do literature research about the user group, and to involve actual users from the target group into the design process. Methodologically this entails 1) learning when and how to apply (participatory) design-research techniques  such as interviews, co-design activities, observation of practice and evaluation of product concepts in the form of experientiable prototypes; and 2) learning to work with an iterative design cycle, in which a refinement of the problem definition, user research, design explorations and experience prototyping co-evolve over a series of iterations. The project is situated in the early 'fuzzy front-end' of new product development. "Experience Prototypes" of increasing fidelity are crafted with the aim to have various stakeholders experience the interaction with the product and be able to give feedback about the design (i.e. the goal of prototyping in this module is not a technical prototyping aimed at near-to-market industrial production specifications).
Assumed previous knowledge
Required materials
Cognitive Ergonomics: Ebook freely available on the UT library website (Designing with the mind in mind, Jeff Johnson, 2014)
Course material
Design Sketching 3: Wacom sketch tablet with minimal requirements
Statistics: J.T. McClave, T. Sincich, S. Knypstra. (2016) Statistiek, 12e ed. Pearson. (current book is in Dutch)
Statistics: Handouts (exercises and learning goals)
Project Designing for Specific Users: Materials on Blackboard
Recommended materials
Instructional modes



Self study with assistance

Cognitive Ergonomics

Written exam with open questions

Design Sketching 3



Assignment + written exam with open questions

Project Designing for Specific Users

Presentation [Final projectresult]
Final assignment [Final projectresult]
Assignment(s) [2 concerning Research Met

Kies de Nederlandse taal