Product Experience: Introducing Students to the Relevance and Application of Design Research

DS 62: Proceedings of E&PDE 2010, the 12th International Conference on Engineering and Product Design Education - When Design Education and Design Research meet ..., Trondheim, Norway, 02.-03.09.2010

Year: 2010
Editor: Boks W; Ion, W; McMahon, C and Parkinson B
Author: Maclachlan, Mary; Bruce, Wood; Harrison, David
Page(s): 236-241


In today’s competitive consumer market it is increasingly important that Product Designers understand how people will use and interact with the products they design. Designers also need to understand why people form relationships with products so that they can influence a richer and more sustainable connection between product and consumer. This paper describes an investigative project undertaken within a new 12-week undergraduate module entitled ‘Design and the User’. The ‘Design and the User’ module was introduced in 2009 to 2nd year undergraduate design students to encourage them to consider a holistic view of physical, sensory and cognitive human capability in order to deliver empathic and emotionally engaging human centred design solutions. Within the module students undertake three projects relating to; product attachment; human-product interaction and inclusive design. The project described within this paper focuses on product attachment and is underpinned by emerging design research in the area of emotional design. In addition to exploring the concept of product attachment, the project also provided a platform to introduce students to the relevance and application of design research. Appropriate research was introduced throughout the project to provide a framework to investigate; product narrative; material objects as symbols of self; the pleasure paradigm and cognitive processing.

Keywords: Product attachment, pleasure, product narrative, emotional design


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