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Getting Started Select Design Task Learn About Design
What Is Design?

Design is one of the most complex of human activities. People design when they make systems (internet, city water supply, interstate roadways), structures (furniture, buildings, bridges), or the products that surround us.

Many engineers, researchers and educators have attempted to describe designing by creating charts that depict few or many design strategies and putting them into a broadly applicable model of design. No model created thus far has been universally accepted.

  •  Design Tutorial  Watch a movie that gives an overview on the design process and commentary on teaching it.
  •  7 Models of the Design Process  Compare the strengths and weaknesses of linear, cyclic, spiral, and other design models, from simple 3-step models to those that are quite complex.
  •  Designer Roles   Get practice recognizing different roles students in design teams can play, including those of a manager, reporter, designer and scientist.
  •  Ways of Naive Designers  Learn about how naive designers work quite differently from expert designers, from strategies to pedagogies which help them avoid these pitfalls.
  •  Design & Inquiry  Differentiate between these critical, related tasks, both of which come into play when students do design activities.
  •  Design Gestures/Artifacts  Designers describe their design ideas with more than words -- see other communication modes - drawing, gestures, and the handling of nearby artifacts - that you will encounter when your students start designing.
  •  Student Design Talk  Listen to interviews of students as describe their design process in their own words.
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