Goals & Objectives

During 14 weeks, students were taught how to design a research study and how to use  generative tools to gain a deeper understanding of what’s going on when people encounter and use designs. 

As part of this class, I co-taught advanced qualitative research methodologies to design students using generative sessions, that dive deeply into user experience; understanding attitudes, value belief systems and cultural issues across each topic. 

ID Research

 
Fall 2018

Generative tools, Design research

Role

Teaching Assistant

Participants

25 upper term design students, 

ArtCenter College of Design

What people say they do is not always what they

actually do, and understanding why people do something is infinitely more important than knowing what they do.

Frameworks & Tools

Working in small teams, students selected a topic to research in depth and developed a kit 

of generative tools to be used in sessions with their participants. Generative tools are 

interactive co creation tools, designed to 

address various aspects of a user's experience, allowing the researcher to dive deeper into that aspect.

 

Each week, I demonstrated various generative 

tools and 'laddering' techniques to the class. 

Prompt: Outline an experience during the academic break.

What is their experience?

Timeline

Prompt:

The user is prompted to think about a specific experience and to map that experience using the toolkit, in order from beginning, middle, and end, mapping positive events above the line and negative events below.

Objectives:

This tool gets into understanding process; the steps that they take from start to end, qualifying the various touch points.

Prompt: Map out your experience during a recent academic term.

What is their experience?

River Journey

Prompt:

The user is prompted to think about a specific experience and to imagine that their journey through that experience as a winding river and to map out the river using symbols to identify key events along the way.

Objectives:

This tool gets into understanding process; the steps that they take from start to end, qualifying the various touch points.

What is their
motivation?

Archetype Deck

Prompt:

Participant is asked to pick two cards:

One that tells the story about your past; 

One that tells the story about you in 10 years

Objectives:

This exercise is a way to understand our participant's motivations, dreams, and aspirations.

Prompt: Use the cards to describe who you are now and who you will be after 10 years. 

How do they see the world?

Image Deck

Prompt:

Participant is asked to pick one card that tells the story of how you x. Pick a second card that tells the story of how x sees you. 

Objectives:

The image deck exercises are a way to understand how our participants see themselves, how they think the world sees them and how they see the world. The visual card deck is used to evoke memories and imagery.

Prompt: Use the cards to describe how you see your phone and how your phone sees you.

Understanding close relationships

Circle Map

Prompt:

Participant is asked to think about their relationships within a specific network. Using the kit, put themself at the center, putting the relationships where they belong on the map.

Objectives:

This exercise is a way to understand close relationships with the user and how they see the world.

Prompt: Think of the network of people that you have in LA. 

© 2019 by Margaux Reynolds

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