IDEA9106 Design Thinking

Design is a state of mind



IDEA student


Ali Abass (aaba3274 – 440405449)

Shuzhan Zhao (szha9905 – 460195197)

Yanqin Yang (yyan5745 – 450184046)



Assessment1: Research report poster -(szha9905)


Blog reflection 5: Ideating – (szha9905)

  • How did taking the position of an Extreme User influence your thinking in relation to the design challenge?
  • We can relate the personalities and emotions of the extreme user into ourselves. And then we will think about the design challenge from the first-person perspective, which invokes enthusiasm of designing process. The extreme character helps to emphasise the key concept and features.

  • Was it different to how you usually generate ideas and empathy?
  • Usually to generate ideas and empathy, I start with a third-person perspective. But in this way I am doing design for other people, it lacks of engagement compared with Extreme User method.

  • Did any of the other design thinking techniques (design provocation cards, stories, storyboards, etc.) help you to work through ideas and collaborate with your group members?
  • Yes, they did. design provocation cards help to broaden the ideas and grasp the important aspects. Stories are useful when linking all ideas together and emerge them into a complete product. Storyboard is interesting as it bring us to the narrative story and it becomes easy to imagine and rethink the functions of design product.

Blog reflection 4: Empathy and Defamiliarisation – (szha9905)

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  • Briefly reflect on the lessons learnt from each exercise. a. Reflective listening
    b. Defamiliarisation of everyday reality  c. Experience modelling
  • a. I learnt that I need to connect with the speaker’s feeling and gain empathy through the listening as a listener. I also knew that I should not judge people’s speaking by my opinion, and it is better to encourage them talking by give my reflection.

    b. The life segments we experienced everyday are stored in memories and we do not have chance to recall them. But the video enhance them and call back the feelings in our bodies and minds. Also, we are interacting with technology everyday, but we didn’t realise that.

    c. The real world contains too many details by with the eyesight deduced glasses, we cannot see them. The surrounding became different from the other perspective. And the shapes and colours constitute an abstract world, which is kind of relaxed and kind of nevrous (if we need to take vehicles).

  • Complement your reflections with photographs of the process.

  • Include a scanned copy of your defamiliarisation forms (public transport)

Blog reflection 3: Creating Personas – (szha9905)

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  • Describe your experience of creating a single persona from different users’ perspectives gathered in the interview data. Was there enough commonality between the 4 people interviewed to form a coherent persona? Or would it have made more sense to create a second different persona?
  • We conducted the interview and get familiar with the needs and profile of each person. Then we used the ‘original data’ to map in the continuum or multiple variables. In this way we gathered the information of users and after analysis, we found the patterns with similar behaviour, and this secondary data is also the base of a single persona. After that we draw up the persona using template and summarise ‘her’ back story, motivations, frustrations and ideal experience from the ‘secondary data’. Clearly, we only had five people cannot represent a more coherent persona, because many variables were not continued. The patterns may contains coincidence or limitation. To make a second different persona is difficult as we had limited samples for collecting data.

  • Do you think your final persona was successful in generating empathy with users? What would you change to make it better?
  • Yes, I think so. We actually found a distinct pattern and it helped to generate the final persona. Though creating the persona, we found that the characters of persona including her needs and goals are more more understandable. It’s like a real person or vivid character. If I would change the process, I think we need more samples (interviewees) and try to scientifically select the interviewees to better represent more data.

Blog Reflection 2: Interpreting Data – (szha9905)


  • How did this exercise help you build empathy with prospective users?

This exercise begins with talking with prospective users. The more designers communicate with users, the more useful information they can obtain and summarize. I feel like I could build empathy with them as I exploring into their experience and emotions, which helps a lot with being sensitive to human needs.

  • How did the clustering of information help you to understand user needs?

Clustering is an efficient approach to summarize user needs. It extracts the most important issues from interviews, and leads to form the original ideas of designers. For instance, during this tutorial class, we found out all the clues that might hidden behind users’ words, and then used clustering to find the relationship among the numerous elements. In the end, the significant points come out clearly.

  • What was difficult or challenging with the technique? How would you do it better next time?

Many interpretation notes are related with each other, so it is frustrated to classify them into sensible categories. I think I will make the statement clearer in order to label them to “independent” categories.

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