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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Informatics : Informatics

Postgraduate Course: Case Studies in Design Informatics 1 (INFR11094)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Informatics CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryHow would you do it differently? Every time a design decision is made to pursue one course of action, other routes are closed off. The goal is to work in groups to see why specific project design decisions were taken, and to envisage a different service or product that could be built from the same components.
Course description This course introduces students to real examples in the emerging field of Design Informatics. A key component of the course is the detailed evaluation of and rationale behind multiple current research projects that highlight the limitations of the state of the art, or novel use of the latest theories and technologies. The primary learning outcome is the development of specialist critical evaluation skills that can then be applied to future industrial application or academic research into Design Informatics.

Students work in groups of 5-6, under the direction of a senior student (normally, one who is enrolled in CSDI2), with a member of academic staff as mentor.

The syllabus divides into three phases, with the middle phase being the longest. Only the first phase is associated with lectures.

- In the first part of the course, the class is split into small groups. A first, core case study is introduced via lectures. The case study varies from year to year, but is normally derived from an active or recent informatics research project where a product or service is an important deliverable. Presentations are normally given by members of the relevant project team. Groups then work to identify important features of the project, and analyse decision decisions to identify possible extensions or improvements, and to identify possible new applications of the core techniques. Documentation is assessed by academic staff.

- In the second part of the course, each group works on its own, new case study. The case study varies from year to year, but is normally be derived from an active or recent design informatics project - conducted by, or known to, the second year student leader - where a product or service is an important deliverable. Under the guidance of its leader, each group works to identify important features of their project, and analyse decision decisions to identify possible extensions or improvements, and to identify possible new applications of the core techniques. Selecting a specific extension, scoping it, and developing a plan for implementing and testing it constitute the main documentation to be assessed by academic staff.

- In the final part of the course, each individual reflects on what they have learned so far, and on how well the group functioned, specifying which aspects of its activity were successful, and which less so. Each individual writes a term paper synthesising their reflections and identifying which skills and strategies they need to develop further.

The core aims of this course mean that the examples used on an annual basis have to be re-assessed for current relevancy. However, the primary focus is on projects relating to groups of humans interacting with, and via, networks of objects.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites Students MUST also take: Design Informatics: Histories and futures (DESI11023)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements This course is open to all Informatics students including those on joint degrees. For external students where this course is not listed in your DPT, please seek special permission from the course organiser.
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2014/15, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 14, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 14, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 168 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Assessed Assignments 100

- 30% of assessment is for the team's multimodal documentation of their response to the core case study.
- 40% is for the team's multimodal documentation of a new case study.
- 30% is for the individual's written term paper (3000 words) describing an appropriate design informatics case not covered in the course.

You should expect to spend approximately 70 hours on the coursework for this course.
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
A student who has successfully completed this course should be able to:
1 - Discuss the research and design processes behind a small set of design informatics projects.
2 - Describe, with examples, the practical limits of current technologies and theories.
3 - Analyse in groups problems and suggest potential solutions, which can or should combine computational and design thinking
4 - Extend, through engineering and/or design methods, specific features or applications identified in one real example
5 - Critically evaluate research literature in the field
Reading List
Readings are provided by teachers. Each week students are asked to read one or more papers. The list varies from year to year.
Additional Information
Course URL
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Jon Oberlander
Tel: (0131 6)50 4439
Course secretaryMs Katey Lee
Tel: (0131 6)50 2701
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