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DIVE University Course


“Design Thinking, Design Doing” is the new University Course that focuses on human-centered design. This course will be offered in Fall semester 2018.

This course is an introduction to theories and practices of design. The design thinking elements of the course offer a critical understanding of methods for researching interactions between humans and the social and built environment, whereas the design doing elements teach us how to develop purposeful interventions that result in more meaningful and effective interactions.  We will do design using a human-centered process while at the same we will think design as we examine what and how people learn while engaged in the design process.

The primary vehicle for student learning is participation in team-based projects in the domains of business, education, and health. This learning is supported through lectures, discussions, readings, in-class exercises, and through a series of formal design reviews that encourage reflection on students’ processes and their insights. Students in the course will spend significant time observing, listening to, analyzing, storytelling, and otherwise engaging users (and fellow students) as they develop and implement meaningful and transformative designs.


University Course Facts

  • The University Course, Design Thinking, Design Doing”, will be offered in fall 2017. Explore the current course syllabus.
  • “Design Thinking, Design Doing” will be team taught by the following faculty:
    • David A. Owens, PhD – Professor of the Practice of Management and Innovation, Owen Graduate School of Management, Vanderbilt University
    • Rogers Hall, PhD – Professor and Department Chair, Department of Teaching and Learning, Peabody College, Vanderbilt University
  • This course is open to all undergraduate, graduate, and professional students.
  • Students should register using YES.
  • Students are not required to participate in a DIVE Boot Camp prior to enrolling in “Design Thinking, Design Doing”. The Boot Camp will be incorporated into the University Course.


Student Learning Outcomes

Comprehend human-centered design principles

  • describe these steps
  • recognize them when presented with examples of design processes
  • distinguish between human-centered design and other approaches to design

Apply human-centered design principles to formulate a plan, gain deeper understanding, and to develop an initial solution to problems

  • develop plans to solve a design problem and break it down into logical steps
  • interview constituents
  • brainstorm ideas and develop an initial solution to problems

Apply higher level human-centered design principles to prototype, test, and implement solutions to problems

  • generate a prototype
  • test a prototype
  • refine a solution based on prototyping, testing, and client feedback