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Introduction to Design Research

The Design Community College

Introduction to Design Research
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Ticket Information

Ticket Type Sales End Price Fee
One attendee
One book supplied
1 hour before event starts $200.00 $0.00
Group registration- 2 to 25 attendees
Total 5 books supplied
1 hour before event starts $800.00 $0.00

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Event Details


Design Research is one of the fastest growing areas of design as organizations are trying to target design solutions more accurately and successfully to create business value and strategic impact through informed design. Each method has a description of how to use the method, why to use the method and when to use the method. A 290 page Design Research Methods reference book will be supplied to each registrant.






   Introduction to Design Research
  • Introduction with overview
  • What is Design Research?
  • Why do Design Research?
  • History of Design Research
  • Qualitative and Quantitative Research
  • Primary and Secondary Research
  • Design Thinking 
  • Synthesizing research
  • Communicating research findings
Methods described include:
  • Contextual inquiry
  • Research frameworks
  • Laddering
  • Triangulation
  • Segmentation
  • Hawthorn effect
  • Empathy
  • Affinity Diagrams
  • Interviewing and observation
  • Personas
  • Research plans
  • Day in the life studies
  • Diary Methods
  • Card sorting methods
  • Identifying user needs
  • Stakeholder mapping
  • Focus group methods
  • Shadowing
  • Heuristic evaluation
and other methods
  • Review
  • Question and Answers with instructor


Changes in Design practice over the last decade have meant that there has been a growing divergence between what practicing designers were taught at school and the skills that we need to practice design today in an increasingly complex consumer environment. We need to apply new tools that most designers were not taught at design school that go beyond appearance to navigate the increasing complexity of design practice. Designers need new design practices drawn from social sciences and psychology to successfully uncover user-centered insights in order to create better-informed design of products, services, environments and experiences. These tools empower designers to rethink and reinvent the practice of design to discover emerging opportunities to create entirely new designs in rapidly evolving consumer behaviours and global markets.

This course provides quick and practical techniques that you can use to design services effectively. You will be introduced to essential service design techniques ranging from affinity diagrams to service blueprints, which will help give your clients the confidence that you have made the best decisions possible and they have made the best decision hiring you.



All times quoted here are US Pacific Standard Time. 
You can calculate your local time on the link below



  • Architects, industrial designers, interior designers, UX and web designers,
  • service designers, exhibit designers, design educators and students, visual communication designers, packaging and fashion designers, all types of designers
  • Engineers and Marketing professionals
  • Executives and senior business leaders
  • Decision makers in R&D of products, services, systems and experiences
  • School teachers and students



Past participants in our online programs have included executives, design managers, designers engineers and other decision-makers from the following organizations as well as many hundreds of other firms.

Teslamotors, NASA, Kaleidoscope, Speckdesign, Intel, Nike, Millercoors, Radiuspd, Gensler, Herman Miller,Trekbikes, Catalystnyc, Sylvania, Whipsaw, Berkeley University, Stanford University, Pininfarina, Inscape, Newbalance, MIT, Rhode Island School of Design,Tufts, Nokia, Steelcase, Ocad, California State University Santa Barbara,University of Michigan,In Form, RIT,Honeywell, Columbia University, Nissan, Volkswagen, Sony, Nestle, Kraft Foods, Otterbox, Henry Ford Museum, Samsung, Ammunition Group, frog Design, Ziba Design, Plantronics, Luxion, Philips, Method, Visteon, Texas Instruments, Cisco, Mindspring, Hasbro, Dow Corning, Bressler Group, Reebok, Logitech, HP,CCS, Praxxis, NCSU, Design & Industry, Kensington, Symantec, Canberra University, Australian Government Department of Defence, Maya, Karten Design, Autodesk, Barco, Shutterstock, Lucid, Colgate, Starbucks, Sunbeam

Half day





Students will develop an awareness of core Design Research methods aimed to inform the design process for dealing with contemporary service design problems.



You will receive a certificate for the course upon completion of requirements. Full payment must have been made and exercises completed to issue a certificate.

Each participant will receive via mail upon payment for the class a copy of the 290 page book "Design Research Methods: 150 ways to inform design". Printing and shipping may take more than 30 days for some areas of the world.



Classes are online



We need a minimum number of students to run a class. We may reschedule or cancel the class if the number of students does not reach the required minimum. We reserve the right to cancel a course in the event of an unforeseen circumstance, or if the minimum acceptable registration is not attained. In the event of a cancellation, we will refund the registration fee only. Due to the cost of mailing the books are non-refundable.


A copy of the 290-page reference book Design Research Methods 150 ways to inform design will be sent by mail to you after registration. 



Rob Curedale was born in Australia and worked as a Design Researcher, Design Director, Design Educator and Designer in London, Sydney, Vevey, Switzerland, Portugal, Los Angeles, Silicon Valley, Hong Kong, China and Detroit. Curedale has designed furniture, medical, technology and consumer products in global markets including Europe, Australia, Asia and North America.  

Rob is the author of two books on Service Design and one dozen books related to design methods and design thinking.

Rob's past positions include Senior Producer at frog responsible for proposal writing, client liasion and business project management, North American Design Manager at Haworth, the second largest furniture manufacturer in the World and Chair of Product Design at the College for Creative studies in Detroit, then the largest Product Design teaching department in North America.

Rob has lectured and taught widely internationally, including at Yale, Pepperdine MBA Innovation Program, Loyola Business Management Program, Art Center Pasadena, Cranbrook, Pratt, Art Center Europe; a faculty member at SCA and UTS Sydney; as Chair of Product Design and Chair of Furniture Design at the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, Art Institute California, Hollywood Campus, Cal State San Jose, Escola De Artes e Design in Oporto Portugal, Instituto De Artes Visuals, Design e Marketing, Lisbon, Southern Yangtze University, Jiao Tong University in Shanghai and Nanjing Arts Institute in China.

Clients include:  HP, Philips, GEC, Nokia, Sun, Apple, Canon, Motorola, Nissan, Audi VW, Disney, RTKL, Government of the United Arab Emirates, British and Australian military, Steelcase, Hon, Castelli, Hamilton Medical, Zyliss, Belkin, Gensler, Haworth, Honeywell, NEC, Hoover, Packard Bell, Dell, Black & Decker, Coleman and Harmon Kardon.



These are just a few of the many advantages of taking DCC online classes.


Lower total costs

With the costs of college education soaring, time and money are major considerations for deciding if a degree will pay off in the long run. All our textbooks are included. Our programs do not require students to take electives. This allows students to focus on their subject of choice and receive the education they need without having to spend time or money unnecessary classes. Relocating to a different region for a traditional college program is costly and time-consuming.


No hectic commutes

Our courses can help cut down or eliminate costs of commuting, babysitting, housing and other expenses incurred by attending classes in a traditional setting. Many students also find that the amount they save on fuel costs can be substantial if they don’t have to commute to a physical campus in general, no matter what the weather conditions may be.

Enroll in your program of choice – regardless of where you are.  DCC courses allow students to choose from a wide variety programs not available in their area. Many of our students access our classes from places where it is difficult to access top quality design education.

Greater Access to Better Expertise
All of our courses are taught by experts with considerable field experience presenting professionally relevant coursework that's highly applicable to your field of study. Our education is accessible anywhere on earth. Highly specialized design education is able to reach more people. Our courses are better organized than traditional courses. 

More interaction with the professor
Join chat sessions where only a handful of students are present, giving you more opportunities to ask questions, clarify points in the lecture and add depth to your knowledge of the materials presented. DCC Online courses offer introverted students the opportunity to participate in class discussions or chats with more ease than face-to-face classes. Students may feel more comfortable talking openly with their teachers through online chats, emails, and newsgroup discussions rather than face-to-face. 

Flexibility and Accessibility
DCC online courses give students the universal access to attend classes wherever they have Internet access. Our classes offer accessibility for students who have physical and time restraints that do not allow them to attend traditional classes. Parents, working students, and mobile professionals can attending classes that fit their work schedule. Students can work a full-time job while taking courses. We offer education accessible for the homebound and those with physical limitations.


Learn from where you want to be. Anywhere with an internet connection

  • At home
  • On vacation
  • At work
  • In the library
  • On a train
  • In your bath 

You can use the restroom or grab a drink if you need a short break easily do at home.

Easy to use

Teacher, lecture slides, chat box, and quiz questions all on one screen. There is no software and simple login. All you need is a web browser and a computer and you’re ready to learn.

Online classes are greener

Online classes save both energy and trees.


Speedy learning
According to a 2009 study from the US Department of Education, “Students who took all or part of a class online performed better, on average, than those taking the same course through traditional face-to-face instruction.  “Research shows that online students achieve same or better learning results in about half the time as those in traditional courses” DCC online courses are better organized than traditional courses.

Career advancement
Show prospective employers that you are ambitious and want to remain informed and prepared for any new challenges. Improve your technical skills: The practical skills students learn in our online courses translate to many design professions.




We also schedule face to face workshops in global cities or at you own location anywhere in the world.We usually require a minimum of 25 participants for workshops held outside California. Contact for more information.



To attend a class you will need one of the following:
Your system should have a microphone and speakers internally or externally.
All students must have a functioning microphone to attend a class.

Operating systemWindows 8
 Windows 7
 Windows Vista
 Windows XP
 Windows 2003 Server
Processor2.4GHz or more
RAM2GB or more
InternetDSL or better
Bandwidth700Kbps or more for simultaneous screen sharing, video and audio conferencing
BrowserInternet Explorer® 7.0 or newer
 Mozilla® Firefox® 4.0 or newer
 Google Chrome™ 5.0 or newer
Additional softwareJavaScript™

Operating systemMac OS® X 10.6 (Snow Leopard®)
 Mac OS® X 10.7 (Lion®)
 Mac OS® X 10.8 (Mountain Lion®)
Processor2.4GHz Intel processor (Core 2 Duo)
InternetDSL or better
Bandwidth700Kbps or more for simultaneous screen sharing, video and audio conferencing
BrowserSafari® 3.0 or newer
 Mozilla® Firefox® 4.0 or newer
 Google Chrome™ 5.0 or newer
Additional softwareJavaScript™

Operating systemiOS 5 or newer
DeviceiPad® 1 or newer
 iPhone® 3GS or newer
 iPod® Touch (3rd generation) or newer
InternetWiFi recommended for VoIP

Operating systemAndroid 2.2 or higher
Processor1Ghz CPU or higher recommended
InternetWiFi recommended for VoIP

Windows 8 & Windows RT
Operating systemWindows 8 or Windows RT
Processorx86, x64 or ARM
InternetWiFi recommended for VoIP



  1.  A $50.00 fee will be charged to participants who transfer to another course within 2 weeks of the original course.
  2. Cancellations can be made up until 14 days before the scheduled event date and will incur a $50.00 cancellation fee.
  3. Refunds or credits will not be issued for cancellations made within 10 days of the scheduled event date. 
  4. Refunds or credits will not be issued for no-shows or for those who begin a course but do not complete it.If the event is cancelled all attendees will be notified via email and a refund issued or transfer to the next available course session
  5. The cost of travel, accommodation and meals and any other costs not described above are not included.
  6. Only one discount may be applied to a registration.
  7. We reserve the right to make changes at any time without notice including, but not confined to price, content, description, starting time, duration,  presenters, and location.
  8. The registrant is responsible for all cancellation fees including those that may apply to for travel accommodation and meals.
  9. Substitutions: If you are unable to attend the program, you can always send a substitute—even at the last minute. Email us to inform us of the change
  10. Special Needs: If you have any dietary restrictions, allergies, special needs or handicaps, please make a note on the first page of the registration form for face-to-face workshops. 
  11. Registrants agree by registering not to present the content to an audience of more than one person or to reproduce or distribute content of this class by any means.Registrants further agree to pay the full registration fee for every person who views this presentation as a consequence of the registrant's registration.



The book Design Research Methods is included in the price of registration.

Designing for the New China. Pre-purchase book
Design Thinking process and methods manual
Design Thinking Pocket Guide
Service Design 250 essential methods
Service Design Pocket Guide
Interviews Observation and Focus Groups
Mapping Methods
50 Brainstorming Methods For team and individual ideation
Design Research Methods 150 ways to inform design
Design Methods 1 200 ways to apply Design Thinking
Design Methods 2 200 more ways to apply Design Thinking



Service Design
250 essential methods
Authored by Robert A Curedale

We are immersed in services every day. We use the internet, we watch television, we travel on public transport, we shop, we drink coffee and eat at restaurants, we use government services, and we go to movies. In the United States employment in service industries has steadily risen from around 60% of the overall population in the 1950s to around 90% today. In most Western countries approximately 70% of GDP is currently generated by services. Service design has growing significance for designers. Service design requires new design skills. Services are not tangible and physical and services change over time. Design is no longer about only the aesthetics or surfaces of things. Today designers create diverse and complex experiences of products, services and spaces. This book details the skills needed by a designer to design services, experiences and systems of products and services.

Described in easy to understand language:
Some definitions of service design
History of service design
Types of services
Components of services
What differentiates services
Why do service design
Service touch-points
The growth of the service economy
Postindustrial economies
What is Design Thinking
Process of service design
Around 250 Service design methods described step by step.

Publication Date: Aug 01 2013
ISBN/EAN13: 0989246868 / 9780989246866
Page Count: 372
Trim Size: 6" x 9"
Language: English




Have questions about Introduction to Design Research? Contact The Design Community College



The Design Community College



 Designing with color

30 good ways to innovate

Introduction to design thinking

Design thinking online programs

Experience maps journey maps and service blueprints

Introduction to service design

Service design online programs

Introduction to design research

Design research online programs

Introduction to industrial design

Industrial design online programs

Interviewing, observation and focus groups

Design portfolio

Product design proposals

Introduction to human factors

Design synthesis

See the full list of our books and courses here



Design Thinking Process & Methods Guide 2nd Edition

Experience Maps Journey Maps Blueprints Empathy Maps

Design Thinking Pocket Guide 2nd Edition

Design Research Methods

30 Good Ways to Innovate

Service Blueprints

Service Design 250 Essential Methods

Mapping Methods for Design and Strategy

Design Methods: 200 ways to apply Design Thinking

Design Methods:200 more ways to apply Design Thinking

50 Brainstorming Methods for Team and Individual Ideation

50 Selected Design Methods

China Design Index

Design Thinking Templates and Teaching Exercises
Free download

Design Thinking Quick Reference Guide
Free download

Using Post it Notes: Ideas for Design and Research
Free download


The Design Community College was established to promote cross-disciplinary international learning, discussion and collaboration between diverse fields of design and architecture.The Design Community College mission is to create, develop, coordinate and promote relevant education, learning, and opportunities for the fast changing needs of the global professional design practitioner community.

Our goal is to provide more accessible, better value, more relevant higher quality design education than is currently available through traditional design schools.


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