Engineering and design

Thinking Big: The 5 Senses

Module code: H7108
Level 6
15 credits in spring teaching
Teaching method: Seminar
Assessment modes: Coursework

This module will offer a unique and interdisciplinary perspective on how to design novel (interactive) experiences with products. We will recognise the rich potential of the human senses (vision, hearing, touch, taste and smell) for designing the interaction with the product exploiting and creating novel experiences based on specific design briefs (eg the brief for the 1st edition focuses on ‘Spatial Design for Food Experiences’ – engaging you in the design of physical objects involved in the experience of eating, such as cutlery, plates, tables and rooms, in restaurants vs the home).

To cover the interdisciplinary perspective, the module will invite guest lecturers, experts in their field, in order to ensure a broad perspective on the human senses and their relevance for product design emphasising multisensory experience design. You will obtain a variety of skills including ideation techniques in-situ (eg contextual enquiries, situated bodystorming), user research methods (eg ethnographic methods), and video production skills for professional design presentations.

The main goals of the module are:

  • confront you with a real world design problem
  • apply experience-centred design methodology
  • exploit the opportunities to design for the five senses individually and combinations of them to enhance people’s experiences with products and their environment
  • learn how to best communicate your design solutions to stakeholders, especially fostering your presentation skills through the use of digital media (eg video production).

Module learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate systematic understanding of some of the latest developments in multisensory research and its exploitability for product / experience design
  • Put theoretical concepts into practice based on a specific real-world problem / design brief
  • Apply innovative, creative and interdisciplinary design and research methods
  • Communicate design solutions effectively through digital media / audio-visual tools to both specialist and non-specialist audiences