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Knowledge of design DET 7-1

Achievement standard 2.10 AS91363

Knowledge of design focuses on understanding the way informed, creative and critical development of new ideas is achieved and how these are realised into feasible outcomes.

Learning objective: DET 7-1

Students will:

  • demonstrate understanding of advanced concepts in design.

Indicators

Students can:

  • explain the relationship between lifecycle design, innovation, and sustainability
  • explain how lifecycle analysis is undertaken and how this determines the focus for design intervention
  • discuss the competing priorities and compromises made as a result of lifecycle analysis when developing a sustainable technology.

Progression

At level 6, students learn basic concepts relating to "what is design?" and how or why something may be described as a "good" or "bad" design. They also develop understanding of design elements in relation to the development of technological outcomes. At level 7, students progress to advanced concepts relating to sustainable design and innovation as currently understood about a design’s quality in the context of its use. Students at level 7 will also develop knowledge about lifecycle analysis in the context of design for end of life outcomes.

Teacher guidance

To support students to develop understandings about the advanced concepts in design at level 7, teachers could:

  • provide opportunity for students to understand what "designing for lifecycle" means and what additional considerations are required when designing for lifecycle (for example, those related to accessing materials/ongoing maintenance and disposal)
  • provide opportunity for students to explore implications of additional considerations on how any design can be judged as "good" or "bad"
  • provide opportunity for students to debate the nature of innovative designing
  • guide students to determine the types of things that can inspire innovative ideas through analysing historical and contemporary innovations to identify inspirational drivers, for example, previous designs (within a similar and dissimilar range of outcomes), art, nature, literature, attitudes, needs/desires/constraints/opportunities
  • guide students to determine aspects that support innovative designing, for example, acceptance of risk taking, collaboration, freedom to explore diverse design ideas, appropriate resourcing, opportunity for free and frank debate, application of "feasibility filters" – timing and "depth".

Contexts for teaching and learning

Students should research the concept of sustainability throughout the design cycle and the lifecycle of the technological outcome.

Provide students with a model to help them understand the concept of sustainability. The image below shows a range of diagrams that could be used to help students understand sustainability.

Sustainability diagrams – a selection of possible models

Sustainability diagrams.

Sustainability diagrams

Provide students with a model to help them understand the concept of life cycle analysis. The image below shows a range of diagrams that could be used to help students understand life cycle analysis.

Lifecycle diagrams – a selection of possible diagrams

Lifecycle diagrams.

Lifecycle diagrams

Students should have the opportunity for a class discussion on what "designing for life" means. For example:

  • ”The time for which a component, device or system is expected to function at its designated capacity without major repairs."
  • “Taking into account the complete product lifecycle, from initial product concept, through its operational period, and into replacement."
  • Structure a discussion and exploration of a product with students about what considerations are required when designing for lifecycle. For example, accessing materials, material selection, energy consumption, ongoing maintenance, disposal, waste, social and environmental factors.
  • Help students develop their understanding of: lifecycle assessment (LCA) – a methodology for assessing the environmental aspects associated with a product over its lifecycle. The most important application is:
    • analysis of the contribution of the lifecycle stages to the overall environmental load, usually with the aim of prioritising improvements on products and processes.
    • Go Green packaging specialists 
  • Find examples of innovative designs; discuss what the drivers would have been. Investigate James Dyson’s designs. “We make products that are more efficient, that work better, use fewer materials, less electricity, less water – and less energy.” Do the students agree?
  • Discuss the types of things that can inspire innovative design ideas – existing designs that could shift thinking, art, nature, attitudes, need to do something better, a desire, constraints and opportunities.
  • Discuss how lifecycle analysis leads to innovative thinking that leads to a sustainable technological outcome.
  • Debate why sustainable design is important:
    • Future generations will be called to solve some of the most challenging problems ever created and faced by man.
    • Future generations must envision multiple methods for addressing complex challenges, for example, renewable energy, world hunger, climate change, and ultimately, the design of a better world.

Literacy considerations

  • Ensure students understand the language associated with the discipline of design:
    • Design – the look and functioning of a technological outcome, building, garment, or product.
    • Aesthetic quality  the nature of, beauty and taste, it can be both objective and subjective. The balance between elements like colour, line, shape and how they interact with one another to create a pleasing “whole”. Different cultures, eras have different definitions of aesthetic qualities hence this can be very subjective. 
    • Lifecycle – lifecycle considerations when designing a technological outcome may include but are not limited to: material selection, energy consumption, waste, and social and environmental factors. The product lifecycle begins in the design phase and moves through to end of life and recycling, reuse or disassembly.
    • Sustainability – sustainability in relation to this objective and assessment refers to the responsible management of resources to support the capacity to endure within environmental, social, and economic dimensions.
    • Innovation – in the context of this standard, innovations may include but are not limited to: novel use of an existing technology, technique or process and/or an original idea that shifts thinking and understanding, and/or results in an innovative outcome. Innovation often allows issues identified from lifecycle analysis to be addressed.
    • Life cycle analysis  Life cycle assessment (LCA) is a methodology for assessing the environment aspects associated with a product over its lifecycle. The most important application is the analysis of the contribution of the lifecycle stages to the overall environmental load, usually with the aim of prioritising improvements on products and processes.
    • Lifecycle design – considerations when creating a technological outcome may include but are not limited to: material selection, energy consumption, waste, and social and environmental factors. Technological outcomes create environmental impacts throughout their lifecycles, from manufacturing to disposal. The best opportunities for considering sustainability of resources like materials and energy can often be uncovered early in the design process by identifying the most important problems to solve and exploring competing priorities. A lifecycle design approach allows you to see the big-picture of the social, environmental, and technical systems that a product is a part of. This creates opportunities for creativity, and identifies new possibilities for innovation. Lifecycle thinking allows designers and technologists to identify and evaluate environmental impacts so that they can prioritise, evaluate, and most effectively reduce or mediate them.
    • Sustainability – refers to the responsible management of resources to support the capacity to endure within environmental, social, and economic dimensions.
    • Competing priorities – those considerations in development of an outcome; that one maybe put ahead of another. Factors (often priorities that can be values based) that are in direct opposition and only one can be accommodated, for example, renewable versus nonrenewable. These could include stakeholder viewpoints, innovation versus social acceptance; expedient practices versus ethically acceptable practices; the use of renewable versus non-renewable resources; budget constraints versus the use of ideal materials; the use of resources of cultural significance in traditional versus contemporary contexts.
  • Support students to develop a writing frame or report structure to guide their thinking, research, and report writing, with key words and sentence starters.
  • Students are required to explain a relationship between lifecycle design, innovation and sustainability and to discuss competing priorities and compromises, therefore, teaching should include supporting how this can be structured within a report format:
    • to identify is to state an idea
    • to describe is a written statement that gives details about the outcome or idea
    • to explain is to describe in detail with reasons – often including the how and why
    • to discuss requires an explanation that is comprehensive, detailed, broad and shows evidence of some complexity in thinking. It may be a reasoned argument presenting a particular point of view, or a comparison and contrast between two ideas or concepts; or it may be a detailed reasoning and relationship between several complex ideas that are compared and contrasted.

Resources to support teaching and learning

Case study material

Other website resources

Assessment for qualifications

The following achievement standard(s) could assess learning outcomes from this learning objective:

  • AS91363 Generic technology 2.10: Demonstrate understanding of sustainability in design

Key messages from the standard

  • Ensure students understand the words associated with assessment, including words used to describe the level of expected performance at each achievement grade.
  • Ensure students know how to write a report that meets the requirements as set out in the assessment specifications and covers everything asked for in the standard.
  • Support students to understand what evidence needs to be included in the report. Breaking the writing task down into a series of tasks could be done by taking the assessment criteria and rephrasing them into questions.
  • The evidence for this standard can be a stand-alone case study, or part of the research required that allows them to develop a sustainable technological outcome through technological practice.
  • Research into relevant material selection, or the materials used in the technological outcome and consider how these materials are: produced, the energy and resource consumption required for production of the material, the efficiency of production of the (product); and consider the disposal and possible recycling of the (product) after its lifespan. (The evidence should show relevant research on materials, their lifecycle and sustainability depending on use.)
  • Explain the relationship between lifecycle design, innovation, and sustainability.
  • Explain how lifecycle analysis is undertaken and how this determines the focus for design intervention.
  • Discuss the competing priorities and compromises made as a result of lifecycle analysis when developing a sustainable technology.

These last three ideas can be successfully explained by students using a range of diagrammatic and annotated illustrations where they have explored the lifecycle of a product and then identified through further annotations the economic, environmental, and societal factors that affected the sustainability of the product.

It is imperative that the product chosen for analysis and investigation gives sufficient information and access for the student to use to analyse against the lifecycle, as a poorly selected product may restrict their ability to achieve.

  • Give feedback and formative assessment to students as they generate the evidence.
  • Innovations may include but are not limited to: novel use of an existing technology, technique or process and/or an original idea that shifts thinking and understanding, and/or results in an innovative outcome.  Innovation often allows issues identified from lifecycle analysis to be addressed.
  • Lifecycle considerations when designing a technological outcome may include but are not limited to: material selection, energy consumption, waste, and social and environmental factors.

Resources to support student achievement

Last updated September 28, 2018



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