Keep in Mind the Design Process !!!

February 21, 2011 at 9:30 am | Posted in research | 1 Comment

I thought it would be useful to have this description of the Design Process from blackboard on our blog and re-read it since we are at this crucial point of synthesizing our information and determining next steps and possible prototypes.

The Design Process – Getting From “Think” to “Thing”

You will be using a design process to guide the development of your project from an idea to the design of a prototype. The steps of the design process are iterative, or cyclical. That means that throughout the stages of designing a product, you will revisit many of these steps as you refine your ideas.

1. Identify a design opportunity.

The design process begins with identifying a need. Notice that opportunities to

design a new product or redesign an existing one are everywhere. They often

come from a problem that has been experienced personally. The goal is to

identify many design opportunities and narrow them down later.

2. Research the design opportunity.

Gather a lot of information about the nature of the problem in order to help narrow

down your choices. Find out if other people experience the same problem and

research any existing products or solutions that may currently be used to solve

the problem. Choose a design opportunity to address. Write a problem


3. Brainstorm possible solutions to the problem.

Try to come up with as many ideas as you can for solving the problem or

addressing the design opportunity. Brainstorming may involve the use of

SCAMPER and other techniques. Then, narrow down your solutions and choose

one to three to pursue further.

4. Draft a design brief.

Write a design brief to help outline the problem. A design brief includes a problem

statement, a description of the user needs, a proposed solution, and often a

sketch of the idea or solution. This is a working document that can be changed.

5. Research and refine your solution.

Do a literature review and talk to experts in related fields and users to find similar

solutions and other approaches to the problem. Analyze your solution for

feasibility, safety, and practicality.

6. Prepare design requirements and conceptual drawings.

Define the criteria the solution must meet (design requirements) and sketch

conceptual drawings.

7. Build models and component parts.

Analyze the project design for its systems, components, and parts. Consider

appropriate materials and methods for constructing a model. Now build a model

of the entire design and/or its systems.

8. Build a solution prototype.

Develop detailed project specifications, consider material properties required,

choose materials, and create a working prototype.

9. Test, evaluate, and revise your solution.

Evaluate the prototype for function, feasibility, safety, aesthetics, and other

criteria. Consider how it could be improved. Modify your prototype or create

another and test it.

10. Communicate the solution.

Present your design solution to an audience. Gather feedback and revise and

redesign your product as necessary.


1 Comment »

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  1. Thanks for really useful information to proceed our project.
    so, what stage are we passing? um, are we heading towards number three? 🙂

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