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An introduction to the methods of systematic product design and specification, illustrated by case studies of successful commercial product designs. Analysis of existing products. History of design and influential designers. Team-based open-ended product design and prototyping projects on nominated topics. Students will form teams and work on specifying and making a product prototype related to their degree major, using techniques such as 3D printing and hand-tool operations (Industrial Product Design), simple animation software and game engines (Immersive Applied Game Design) or mixing, blending and grinding operations (Chemical and Healthcare Product Formulation).
Students will be able to describe and critically discuss the major influential designers, styles and notable design innovations throughout history, including contemporary Maori design. Students will be able to give both positive and negative examples of product performance and acceptability in the context of the cultural norms of a variety of end-users, including indigenous groups, issues of cultural acquisition (colonisation) and the Treaty of Waitangi. Students will be able to describe the stages involved in the systematic design and launch of a new producto Research; Specification Brief; Concept Generation; Design Development; Prototyping; Detailed Design; Production; Marketing, Sales and Distribution Students will know the common elements required for a formal written product design specification (“Brief”) relevant to a given product area:o Performance; Function; Environment; Life Span; Maintenance/Upgrade; Technical Support; Stability; Shelf-Life; Cost; Competition; Packaging; Shipping; Quantity; Manufacturing; Size; Toxicology; Testing; Safety; Customer Aspects; Weight; Aesthetics; Materials; Ergonomics; Operating Platform; Quality; Reliability; Company/Market Constraints; Political/Legal; Installation; Sales and Marketing; Documentation; Disposal. Students will have engaged in group brainstorming sessions to propose product design concepts for a given set of client specifications. Students will have had hands-on experience in product design prototyping relevant to their major discipline. Students will be able to use weighted scores to assess the extent to which alternative product concepts meet product specifications Students will be able to use a variety of approaches to communicate product concepts and production methods, including written descriptions, hand-drawn sketches and/or block diagrams. Students will have had experience working in a team. Students will be able to produce a formal report that outlines a product concept development that includes design specifications, research and ideas generation, evaluation of alternatives against relevant criteria, product prototyping tests and results, and a final product design description and evaluation against the original specifications.
This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:
Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award
Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.
Employable, innovative and enterprising
Students will develop key skills and attributes sought by employers that can be used in a range of applications.
Biculturally competent and confident
Students will be aware of and understand the nature of biculturalism in Aotearoa New Zealand, and its relevance to their area of study and/or their degree.
Students must attend one activity from each section.
Domestic fee $1,668.00
International fee $7,200.00
* Fees include New Zealand GST and do not include any programme level discount or additional course related expenses.
For further information see
School of Product Design on the department and colleges page.