Product and Experience Design for Desirability (at SEAS)

Multi-disciplinary, project-based course for students interested in designing products, services, or ambitious art or educational works that are meaningful, beautiful, useful, as simple as possible, and emotionally desirable (e.g., calming, inspiring, delightful, cool, covetable.). Students learn the fundamentals of design theory, emotional design, user-centered design, and design leadership. The class format consists of a series of project-based design challenges, and each challenge has three parts. The first part is a summary of the scientific literature on an important emotional concept that is relevant to design, such as trust, anxiety reduction, or belonging. The second part includes one or more case studies of past works that were exceptionally well designed for this emotional concept. The third part is a custom design challenge for students to practice applying what they are learning to their own creative ideas. Past project prompts include challenges like designing headphones for anxiety reduction, health literacy campaigns for rapid adoption, and sustainable materials like bamboo to represent the future of luxury. Along with this cycle of theory and application, the course teaches research-based design process and design leadership skills. Weekly critique panels enable students to develop and refine their own design point of view. The final project in the course is a professional design portfolio.

Limited enrollment. Instructor permission required for all students. Engineering Sciences 22 is jointly offered with the Graduate School of Design as SCI 6276.