FW: foundation classes/topics for IxD education

16 Dec 2004 - 5:37pm
570 reads
Dave Malouf

I'm resubmitting this b/c not a soul responded and I think it's a goody!


-----Original Message-----
Whether formal or informal education is an important part of anyone pursuing
a career, especially one like interaction design that has so many elements
to it. In pursuing my own formal education I came across a book called "The
Elements of Design" by Gail Greet Hannah. The book is part chronicle and
part instructional text for anyone interested in abstract 3-D design, which
is a primary component of Industrial Design. The book outlines 6 core
attributes of any 3-D design solution and calls these the foundation
courses. I don't have the book w/ me right now, but they are something like,
line, volume, space, color, value, and ??? Oy! some reading retention, eh?

As I was coming in on the subway this morning to work, I was wondering what
would be the foundation classes for IxD like these. do any of the
cirriculums out there have such a process as foundation? I know there are
people on teh list from CMU and Ivrea and I would be interested to hear it.
The foundation I'm talking about is for both Grad and Undergrad in IndDes @

What I find so interesting about the foundation classes is that the first
year where these classes take place, nothing "useful" is created. The
functional is removed from the classes and all that is done is for the
purpose of exploration, experience, collaboration, and learning to control
these properties so that when you do add use and functionality to the
equation, there is a level of mastery in these properties so they can move
to the background of the process instead of being more conscious and central
in focus.

When attempting to apply this to IxD I get a little stuck. I'm not sure if
these are analogous to the IndDes version, but these are the areas worthy of
exploration in interaction design (or the design of behavior).

1. time - how to master time
2. selection - the organization and presentation of objects to be selected
3. I/O - input/output into digital systems 4. digital systems (duh!) - what
is a digital dystem 5. research methods

When I look at this list though, they don't all seem analagous.

Anyway, these are some thoughts.

-- dave

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