Syllabus academic year 2009/2010
(Created 2009-08-11.)
RESEARCH METHODS IN INDUSTRIAL DESIGNIDE081

Higher education credits: 4,5. Grading scale: UG. Level: A (Second level). Language of instruction: The course will be given in English. Compulsory for: ID5. Course coordinator: Docent Lena Sperling, Lena.Sperling@design.lth.se, Industridesign. The course might be cancelled if the numer of applicants is less than 5. Assessment: The mark “Passed”, depends on participation (at least 80 % of lectures), quality of development, final presentation, result(s) and written report to be revised after feedback. In group work, the contribution of each student must be clearly stated and acknowledged by the group. Further information: Educational form: Theoretical lectures and practical demonstrations, self-organised reading, group discussions and research under supervision, Group presentations and critics. Feed-back on reports by groups. Home page: http://www.ide.lth.se.

Aim
The aim of the course is to introduce basic principles of theory of science and the research process, as well as to present methods and models for realisation and documentation of projects of theoretical as well as practical nature. The course will give a vision of a subsequent research career in industrial design. It will at the same time support the coming diploma work and future work as a practising industrial designer.

Knowledge and understanding
For a passing grade the student must

be able to account for, plan, carry out, report and discuss a small research study in relation to current knowledge.

Contents
Industrial design is presented as a growing field of research within the design sciences and is positioned in its epistemologic and scientific context. The various phases of the research process are presented, from formulation of a problem and a hypothesis, over planning and realisation of an investigation to the treatment, presentation and interpretation of results. Introductions are given to information searching in scientific data bases, scientific authorship and writing of popular reports. A research report including an abstract is thereafter written in English about a current project (group work).

Research methods within the three main areas of industrial design (Management, Meta-qualities and Methodology) are presented by researchers in industrial design. Qualitative investigation methods will be given special attention in the course.

Literature
Patel R, Davidson B, 2003. Forskningsmetodikens grunder. Att planera, genomföra och rapportera en undersökning. Studentlitteratur, Lund or
Grix J, 2004. The Foundations of Research. Palgrave Study Guides.
Sperling L, Christoforidou D, Olander E, 2005. Communication with users in industrial design activities. Educational report. Industrial design, LTH, Lund University, Lund, Sweden.
Sperling L, Olander E, Kristav P, Eriksson P 2007. The User Compass Chart. A mediating tool for probing user experiences of visual design elements. Submitted September 2007.
Books, dissertations and scientific papers in and about industrial design (optional), e.g.