Home Universities Innovation Through Design: Think, Make, Break, Repeat

Innovation Through Design: Think, Make, Break, Repeat

Online Course Highlights
  • The University of Sydney via Coursera
  • Learn for FREE, Up-gradable
  • 15 hours of effort required
  • 10,611+ already enrolled!
  • 4.8 ★★★★★ (180 Ratings)
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Language: English

The evolution of design has seen it become a discipline no longer limited to the concerns of a singular, specific domain and develop to become a pathway for solving complex, nonlinear problems. Design is becoming a capability-enhancing skill, equipping people with the ability to deal with uncertainty, complexity and failure.

In this course, we demonstrate how you can use design as a way of thinking to provide strategic and innovative advantage within your profession. Suitable for anyone who is curious about design and translating the processes and tools of design thinking into innovative opportunities, over 5 weeks we explore, apply and practice the design process: think, make, break and repeat. Through introducing theoretical concepts and examining industry case studies with leading Australian design firms, we investigate design as learning about the context (the thinking part), building prototypes as tangible representations (the making part) and testing potential solutions (the breaking part).

We build on this by showing the productive value of moving through the process quickly and often (the repeating part), to improve ideas and develop new insights.

Throughout the course, you will follow us through three of Australia’s most exciting design offices and learn from practicing designers and leaders in design. This insight into industry will enable you to develop a comprehensive understanding of design and the role it can and does play within the innovation landscape. You will leave this course with a set of practical tools and techniques to apply to situations within your own professional context, to translate problems into opportunities and solutions, and ultimately to innovate through design.


WEEK 1 : Introducing design

This module introduces the concept of human-centred design and explores its role for innovation. We give a short introduction to design innovation and review the process that design innovation projects typically follow. The module also features interviews with industry experts about their views on what design innovation is and how it is applied in industry.

WEEK 2 : Design thinking

This module provides you with an understanding of the first step in any design innovation project, which we refer to as design thinking. We discuss its role in the human-centred design process and how it relates to innovation. The module will also examine some of the tools used to collect data about users and customers. Industry experts explain the role of this step and the methods they use through concrete case studies.

WEEK 3 : Design making

In this module, we look at the design making part of the process. In design making, user or customer data is turned into concepts, prototypes and minimum viable products, which can be used to gain initial feedback about ideas. Industry experts discuss the importance of ideation and prototyping in the design industry.

WEEK 4 : Design breaking

This module looks at the value of evaluating designs, referred to as the design breaking part of a design innovation process. We explain some methods for evaluating design solutions, introduce fundamental design principles and see how designers are applying these methods in industry design innovation projects.

WEEK 5 : Repeating design

This module focuses on the very important step in the design process of repeating, or iteration, and its role in design innovation. We also provide a summary of all the topics covered in the course and take you through the design process with a design research project. Industry experts share their insights and tips about working in the design industry.

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