Learning to Design for Both the End-User and Client Companies: A Pilot Survey of Practice in UK Schools

Howard Denton
2003, Vol. 8, No. 1,


Professional designers have long had to grapple with designing products for both the end-users and the company which commissions the work. This paper reports on a survey, which aimed to examine how students are introduced to these concepts in schools via a questionnaire to new undergraduates of industrial design.

The indications are that students are first introduced to the concept of designing for others at an average age of 13. Design for a company tends to be later, averaging age 15. The survey showed that teachers use a number of techniques to introduce these concepts. A comparative analysis is not possible within this research design. Those techniques that students felt were most effective at developing their understanding of design work in a commercial context are reported.

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