I am excited to present this research at the University of  Cincinnati, DAAP on November 3, 2017 at IASDR 2017. It’s been a few years since the project was completed, but ever since, findings have sparked new projects and approaches for teaching design research at the undergraduate level. I look forward to sharing more in November! Here’s the abstract for the paper from the IASDR 2017 Proceedings:

High-stakes testing that became the norm after the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 helped condition students to strive for correct answers for clear problems, all on the first try. However, the iterative process in design requires risk-taking to conduct a trial-and-error process of defining problems and exploring possible solutions. This design research project was operated with Miami University Graphic Design students to test their willingness to take risks in their coursework to achieve their measures of success. Students identified that improving their skills was how hey defined success. An interaction design assignment involving front-end coding was modified to test students’ comfort taking risks to grow their skills. Most students took risks in the assignment to grow their interaction design skills. The project revealed that closer attention to student motivation when developing learning experiences could help learners make the transition to practicing design as an iterative process fraught with risk.

Dennis Cheatham

Design Researcher and Educator at Miami University (OH). Dennis researches ways people and design decisions intersect at experiential and systemic levels. His work is focused on end-of-life choices and topics in aging, specifically advance care planning and aging in underserved populations.

Design Research to Empower