J-term Course IDP 116

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Course Objectives

Students will get a hands-on introduction to design thinking by designing a tool to help someone learn something.

The course will cover design process in 5 steps: Empathy, Define, Ideate, Prototype, Test.

5 step processIn addition to designing for learning, students will review an existing learning technology or tool. Students will learn to assess their own and each others designs by exploring the following questions:

What is the underlying narrative of the tool’s design?
Who is the learner? What are they trying to learn? How does the technology help them do this? What are the undesired or unanticipated uses, misuses and dis-uses of the design?

Students will work as individuals or in teams to develop a design portfolio that demonstrates the following qualities:

  • Embrace of failure that results in demonstrable learning or new understanding. The designers must explain their process, describe their
    iterations, and detail how they incorporate user feedback.
  • Human-centeredness. There is evidence the design is inspired by users. The role of the user’s story on the evolution of the project is clear and evocative.
  • A major intellectual risk was taken. There is evidence of that “bad” ideas were entertained in a productive and reflective way for the purposes of creating moments of learning.
  • The sum of the efforts of team members is greater than the parts. The team shows the ways they work together, and shows examples of reflective teamwork in action.

What’s on the syllabus?

The course schedule is available for download. We’ll walk through it during our first class meeting.

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