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DSN 102 — Design Execution: Bringing Ideas to Life

Quarter: Winter
Day(s): Mondays
Course Format: On-campus
Duration: 8 weeks
Date(s): Jan 22—Mar 19
Time: 7:00—9:20 pm
Drop Deadline: Feb 4
Units: 2
Tuition: $520
Instructor(s): Peter Macdonald, Annie Valdes
Limit: 115
Status: Open
Please Note: No class on February 19
7:00—9:20 pm
Jan 22—Mar 19
8 weeks
Drop By
Feb 4
2 Units
Peter Macdonald, Annie Valdes
Please Note: No class on February 19
The best way to understand the practice of design is through the application of design methodologies to real challenges. In this course, you will be introduced to the methods used by practicing designers to create meaningful concepts anchored in real human needs, and learn how to communicate your ideas through the language of design. We will discuss the fundamentals of user-centered design research, synthesis, concept generation, rapid visualization techniques, prototyping, and gathering feedback. Along the way, we will provide numerous examples drawn from professional practice.

Through in-class exercises and optional homework, you will have the opportunity to practice these methods individually and in collaboration with your fellow students. As you learn to think like a designer, you will find that these skills are applicable not only to the sorts of challenges presented to design professionals, but also to the broad variety of situations you may encounter in everyday life: simple and complex, big and small, personal and professional, local and even global.

Please note: Due to its large enrollment capacity, this course is not designed to be project-based. There are no prerequisites, and no previous design training is expected or assumed.

In this three-quarter sequence, we will explore the nature of design and its relevance both within and beyond the realm of the design professional. The Fall course served as a general introduction to the history and diverse philosophies of design. In the Winter, students will learn a set of practical design methodologies. In the Spring, students will be guided through a process of translating theory and practice into a viable business strategy. While these courses build upon one another, each course can be taken independently as well.

Peter Macdonald, Senior Design Lead, IDEO

Peter Macdonald has more than thirty years of experience in design as an industrial designer, mechanical engineer, product designer, design strategist, design team leader, and design educator. He has designed medical devices, computer equipment, toys, food products, and office furniture systems. He has taught design methodology to students, engineers, scientists, medical professionals, corporate executives, and US Navy submarine personnel. He received an MS in engineering and product design from Stanford.

Annie Valdes, Principal, Design Tugboat

Annie Valdes has spent nearly twenty years working in and teaching about human-centered design as a design researcher, design strategist, and project and program lead, including a decade at IDEO. At Design Tugboat, she is an innovation coach, design consultant, and design researcher, with a focus on design for health. She is a frequent collaborator with the Design Institute for Health at the Dell Medical School of the University of Texas at Austin. She received an MBA from Georgia State.

Textbooks for this course:

There are no required textbooks; however, some fee-based online readings may be assigned.