DE5009 - Professional Design Practice

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What will I learn on this module?

You will learn to tackle sophisticated and stimulating design projects, further developing your skills and abilities as an aspiring professional designer. You will be encouraged to further develop a flexible and imaginative enquiry-based approach to design projects. You will become an active participant, integrating your design practice with distinguishable practical and intellectual skills.
A framework of design competitions and live industry-facing collaborative projects will provide you with the opportunity to refine your specialist skills, professional qualities, enterprise and entrepreneurial capabilities through real-life scenarios – providing an authentic and professional learning experience. A range of projects will be available in order for you to develop you own specialised practice in the design of products, services and experiences.

You will continue to further develop your design communication and visual thinking skills in the production of a creative process journal, capturing a range of design development work produced in the pursuit of your design projects. The ability to think and explore visually in two-dimensions remains a crucial skill for designers and one that is highly sought-after by employers. Visual thinking and design communication facilitates effective discussion, idea generation and feedback.

You will be given the opportunity to engage and deliver in professional design presentations, developing your verbal and visual communication skill of complex design solutions either individually or as part of a creative group to tutors, peers and, when possible, stakeholders. An essential skill to successfully communicate solutions, ideas or concepts at any level.

How will I learn on this module?

You will select undertake projects aligned to two main areas of activity (including but not limited to product, service and experience) working directly with tutors, peers and other collaborators, engaging in discussion and constructive critique of your own and others work during project activity.
The studio and workshop environment is integral to this process, encouraging individual intellectual freedom and a creative collaborative community. Hands-on participation and the exploration of physical and/or digital skills, materials and processes enables you to display evidence of creative thinking through the exploration and communication of a concept/artefact that has a purposeful outcome.

This type of experiential activity engages you in self-initiated research, encouraging independent judgement and critical self-awareness.
Working as an individual and/or in groups, you learn to be flexible and collaborative, to identify and redefine problems in a creative way and focus on solutions that are both relevant and empathetic. Traditional, new and emerging techniques are used both in the delivery and realisation of outcomes, and you will learn to present your work and ideas to a variety of audiences in different situations.

You will produce a visual design process sketchbook as you work, capturing a range of design development work created in the pursuit of your design projects. This may contain, but not be limited to, some/all of the following; sketches of products, form exploration, design details, construction ideas, research insights, customer journey maps, experience flows, service wireframes and others. Visual thinking and communication facilitates effective discussion, idea generation and feedback.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

All projects begin with a briefing to explain the context, aims and expectations of the work, often with external stakeholders involved to give real-life insights into the project where appropriate/possible. Initial sessions will expand the problem space to identify possible approaches or opportunities for design research and exploration.

You will be encouraged and supported to have the confidence to engage in discussion and constructive critique of your own and others work in a safe environment throughout the project.

Regular contact with tutors and peers will give you formative feedback and advice about your practice. You will be expected to show a greater degree of independence, professionalism and autonomy in the pursuit of your work, both as an individual and when working with others.

Tutors and other staff will be aligned to support specific projects (e.g. product, service or experience) as well as technical resources that are relevant to exploration and realisation of design outcomes. Guidance sessions with specific tutors are scheduled to support and review progress of work on all modules.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:

MK5.3 - Demonstrate a progressed knowledge of industrial design practice principles through the undertaking of sophisticated design practice projects. (PK5.3)

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:

MI5.1 - Undertake research in order to apply independent judgment and critical analysis in pursuit of design activity (PI5.1)

MI5.4 – Conceive, explore and propose highly creative, credible solutions to complex design problems with distinguishable skill, application and presentation.
(PI5.4)

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):

MP5.3 - Demonstrate effective employability skills including organisation and project management through design practice. (PP5.2)

MP5.4 - Show developing ability to effectively communicate through one or more of the following means; physical, digital, written, visual, oral. (PP5.3)

How will I be assessed?

Regular contact with tutors will provide formal and informal formative assessment feedback and advice about your work, based upon a schedule of interim reviews.

Formal formative assessment;

Projects undertaken with external stakeholders will normally culminate in the presentation of design proposals in visual and/or physical, digital form. Students may be asked to present their work verbally to an audience of peers, tutors and stakeholders.

Competition projects will be assessed by the review of visual and other material requested in the specific design brief, such projects may not always be presented to others.

A continuing visual development sketchbook will serve as a useful resource for feedback and help you to document your developing design processes.

Summative Assessment;

Holistic summative assessment against all learning outcomes will be made at the conclusion of the module via review of a portfolio of design practice outputs. The portfolio with consist of a range of presentation materials.

You will submit a Creative Process Jounral of visual design concept exploration and development capturing your design and development process. This will form 20% of the holistic assessment.

Pre-requisite(s)

Level 4 Modules
Level 5 Modules (DE5006, DE5007, DE5008 or AD5007)

Co-requisite(s)

DE5010 – Professional Design Context

Module abstract

You will learn to tackle sophisticated design projects, further developing your skills and abilities as an aspiring professional designer. You will be encouraged to further develop a flexible and imaginative enquiry-based approach to design projects. You will become an active participant, integrating your design practice with distinguishable practical and intellectual skills.

A range of design competitions and industry-facing collaborative projects will provide you with the opportunity to hone your specialist skills, professional, enterprise and entrepreneurial capabilities through real-life scenarios – providing an authentic learning experience. A range of projects will be available in order for you to develop you own specialised practice in the design of products, services and experiences.

Course info

UCAS Code W240

Credits 40

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Northumbria School of Design

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2020

Fee Information

Module Information

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