San Antonio, Texas
June 10, 2012
June 10, 2012
June 13, 2012
25.830.1 - 25.830.16
Interdisciplinary Design of Pervasive ComputingDeveloping interactive products that are desirable, user-centered, and technically feasible requiresinterdisciplinary expertise and effective interaction across multiple disciplines. From an interdisciplinarydesign class that brings together students from industrial design, computer engineering, and marketing,we present three hands-on, discipline-specific exercises designed to remove disciplinary barriers andpromote cross-disciplinary appreciation.Each of the three exercises were based in one of the participating disciplines and led by an instructor fromthat discipline. However, all students participated in each exercise in order to gain not expertise, butrather insight and perspective on other disciplinary roles in the design collaboration. First, an industrialdesign exercise on sketching was conducted to introduce an effective means to rapidly convey ideas.Thumbnail sketching exercises that gave students 20 seconds to draw a prompt given by the instructorshowed that everyone could convey an idea regardless of aesthetic talent. Second, a marketing exercise ondesigning product boxes was conducted to help students capture the attention of intended users andconvey the values of the product. Guided by a marketing instructor and marketing students, the wholeclass learned to consider how their products would be presented and accepted by target users. Finally, acomputer engineering exercise was conducted to heighten awareness of pervasive computing products,which must sense and respond to the physical world. Led by computer engineering instructor andstudents, an ArudinoTM prototyping exercise was used to introduce non-ECE students to programmingand provided “User Friendly Datasheets” to familiarize them with the abilities that each sensor provided.This exercise allowed students to learn technical aspects of the product design.The impact of these exercises was examined through the theoretical lens of Boix-Mansilla’s construct ofassessing interdisciplinarity, specifically focusing on disciplinary grounding, integrative leverage, andcritical stance. Using transcripts of in-class team conversations as well as analysis of final products,results indicate that the interdisciplinary exercises achieved two outcomes: 1) students gained newperspectives from other disciplines, and 2) students performed as experts in their home disciplines.
McNair, L. D., & Kim, K., & Forsyth, J., & Dorsa, E., & Martin, T., & Coupey, E. (2012, June), Interdisciplinary Pedagogy for Pervasive Computing Design Processes: An Evaluative Analysis Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21587
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