Design Theory and Methodology
Course code
old course code
Course title in Estonian
Disaini teooria ja metoodika
Course title in English
Design Theory and Methodology
ECTS credits
Assessment form
lecturer of 2021/2022  Autumn semester
Merja Lina M. Bauters (language of instruction:English)
lecturer of 2021/2022  Spring semester
lecturer not assigned
Course aims
The aim of this course is to introduce different theoretical frameworks and methodologies of the design discipline.
Lectures, discussions and assignments help the students to develop the ability to think critically about the design discourse and design process and thus to improve their own design methodologies.
Brief description of the course
1. 'Defining Design' provides an overview of different approaches to defining and describing design discipline. Historical overview of the development of design theory. Lecture and discussion.
2. 'Design Process, Methods and Tools' looks at the historical development of design methodology. We also address fundamental questions about design methodology: What is the use of methods? What is the value of methods? Lecture and discussion. Analysing exercise. Students' presentations;
3. 'Design Methodologies' introduces the core of different contemporary methodologies like user-centred design, inclusive design, social design, systems oriented design etc. It analyses designing as complex problem solving; requirements of coping with complex problems and limitations of human information processing will be discussed.
4. 'Design management' introduces design in business and public sector. Focusses on leading design projects and composing design briefs. Discusses about design in policies and strategies. Lecture and discussion; students' presentations.
5. 'Design research' focuses on different design research methodologies, incl philosophies, methods and tools.
Learning outcomes in the course
Upon completing the course the student:
- is able to outline the history and development of the subject of Design Theory and Methodology.
- is able to discuss Design Theory and Methodology as a framework for analysing, understanding and explaining designing as human activity.
- can explain the difference between methodologies, theories, and practice of designing and to think critically about the value of all three.
- can reflect consciously and critically on their own personal methods of designing.
Merja Bauters
Additional information
Prerequisite for the grade is participation in 75% of classes and concluding required assignments.