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8-1 | 8-2 | 8-3

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8-1 | 8-2

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6-1 | 6-2

7-1 | 7-2

8-1/2

Manufacturing (MFG)

6-1 | 6-2

7-1 | 7-2

8-1/2

Technical areas (TCA)

8-1 

Construction and mechanical technologies (CMT)

6-1 | 6-2 | 6-3 | 6-4

6-5 | 6-6 | 6-7

7-1 |  7-2 |  7-3 |  7-4

7-5 |  7-6 |  7-7

8-1 | 8-2 | 8-3 | 8-4

8-5 | 8-6 | 8-7

Design and visual communication (DVC)

6-1 | 6-2 | 6-3

7-1 | 7-2 | 7-3

8-1 | 8-2 | 8-3

Digital technologies (DTG)

6-1 | 6-2 | 6-3 | 6-4

6-5 | 6-6 | 6-7 | 6-8

6-9 | 6-10 | 6-11 | 6-12

7-1 |  7-2 |  7-3 |  7-4

7-5 |  7-6 |  7-7 |  7-8

7-9 |  7-10 |  7-11 |  7-12

8-1 | 8-2 | 8-3 | 8-4

8-5 |  8-6/7 | 8-8 | 8-9

8-10 |  8-11 | 8-12

Processing technologies (PRT)

6-1 | 6-2 | 6-3

7-1 | 7-2 | 7-3

8-1/2 | 8-3


Brief development TP 7-1

Achievement standard 2.1 AS91354

Brief development is a dynamic process that reflects the complex interactions within on-going technological practice. A brief is developed to clearly describe a desired outcome that would meet a need or realise an opportunity, and takes into account the physical and social environment.

A brief is comprised of:

  • a conceptual statement that communicates what is to be done and why it should be done
  • specifications that define the requirements of a technological outcome in terms of its physical and functional nature.

Achievement objectives: TP 7-1

Students will justify:

  • the nature of an intended outcome in relation to the issue to be resolved and justify specifications in terms of key stakeholder feedback and wider community considerations.

Indicators

Students will:

  • explore the context to select an issue
  • identify a need or opportunity relevant to their selected issue
  • establish a conceptual statement that justifies the nature of the outcome and why such an outcome should be developed with reference to the issue it is addressing
  • establish the specifications for an outcome using stakeholder feedback, and based on the nature of the outcome required to address the need or opportunity, consideration of the environment in which the outcome will be situated, and resources available
  • communicate specifications that allow an outcome to be evaluated as fit for purpose
  • justify the specifications in terms of stakeholder feedback, and the nature of the outcome required to address the need or opportunity, consideration of the environment in which the outcome will be situated, and resources available.

Progression

At level 6, students identify a need or opportunity from a given context and issue. They then develop a brief for that identified need or opportunity.

The key step up in brief development at curriculum level 7 is that students need to select their own issue. At level 7 the issue should not be provided by the teacher. The students should explore the context in order to select an issue themselves and then from that issue identify a need or opportunity. Students then develop a brief for that identified need or opportunity. At level 7, students are expected to incorporate feedback from key and wider stakeholders in the brief development process.

Teacher guidance

Teachers could support students undertaking brief development at level 7 to:

  • provide a context that offers a range of issues for students to explore
  • guide students to select an authentic issue within the context
    • an authentic issue is one which is connected to the context, and allows students to develop a brief for a need or opportunity that can be managed within the boundaries of their available resources 
  • support students to identify a need or opportunity relevant to the issue
  • support students to understand the physical and functional nature required of their outcome
  • support students to justify the nature of their outcome in terms of the issue it is addressing
  • support students to develop specifications and provide justifications for them drawing from stakeholder feedback, and wider community considerations such as the resources available to develop the outcome, ongoing maintenance of the outcome once implemented, sustainability of resources used to develop the outcome and the outcome itself, disposal of the developed outcome when past its use by date.

Contexts for teaching and learning

  • The teacher provides a given context, students then explore this context in order to identify an issue. The context must allow students scope to explore a broad range of issues before selecting one issue to address. Examples of possible contexts include such things as: storage, afterschool snacks, outdoor living, sustainable energy, sport, educational software, digital data display, data management, street-wear, portability, and laminated furniture.
  • Ensure students understand the importance of the initial exploration of possible issues and then establishing an issue, and the process of determining possible needs and opportunities (rather than jumping to the solution and writing specifications without undertaking this initial exploration).
  • Once the student has identified their own issue they research the issue to determine a need or opportunity. Students will undertake brief development to communicate the nature of an outcome, which will resolve the issue rather than moving immediately to a solution and writing specifications without undertaking this initial exploration.
    • Note: It is an important requirement of brief development at level 7 that the student identifies their own issue.
  • Stakeholders must be accessible to students. There is no point choosing a context or issue if there is not a range of obvious and available stakeholders. The stakeholders need to remain available and committed throughout the brief development process as students will need on-going access to them.
  • Brief development is a dynamic and iterative process. Students need to go through a process in order to arrive at a final brief. This process is likely to involve exploring the issue within the given context/environment, establishing and refining the attributes required in the outcome through on-going research and functional modelling, seeking on-going feedback from stakeholders, developing the required attributes into specifications, and on-going consideration of the context. Further information on the brief development process can be found in the explanatory paper on brief development. Students’ understanding of, and ability to undertake, brief development will be increased if they have a good understanding of other components of technology, and particularly characteristics of technological outcomes and technological modelling.
  • Students should be given checkpoints to ensure that the process is on-going. For example, students should be given checkpoints for:
    • a conceptual statement that clearly communicates what will be developed, for whom, where it will be situated, and why it should be developed  
    • initial attributes of the outcome
    • initial specifications based on research and consultation
    • updated conceptual statement and specifications based on functional modelling/conceptual design development. If the student is carrying on to develop a prototype from the conceptual statement then there will be a final conceptual statement and specifications based on prototyping. 
  • Ensure students have a clear understanding of specifications and attributes and the relationship between the two. A brief includes specifications that define the requirements of a technological outcome in terms of such things as appearance and performance. Specifications are an explicit set of requirements that are measurable and need to be satisfied for the outcome to be judged as "fit for purpose". Identifying attributes is a common precursor to specification development. Initially attributes may have been suggested by the stakeholder(s), or determined by the student as part of the early brief development work. It is essential that these attributes are refined into specifications as the student works through the brief development process.
  • Students will need explicit teaching and support to develop their understanding of how to undertake brief development, including such things as:
    • how to prepare questionnaires and surveys to establish the needs of the stakeholder/s and wider community 
    • how to write the findings from these interviews/surveys into an initial brief that may be a mixture of attributes and specifications of the outcomes 
    • how to analyse similar existing products identified at the first consultation of the stakeholder/s (use of criteria/tables/PMI charts)
    • how to select a range of potential ideas (concepts) and determine the presentation modes to gather feedback from the stakeholder
      • It is important that the student communicates clearly what they are trying to achieve as not all stakeholders will be able to visualise what the designer “sees”. It may be helpful to discuss with the student ways to clarify their thinking with the stakeholder for example by taking material samples along to look at them in the intended environment or 3D sketches that show their ideas look. 
    • writing up the considerations from these interviews to inform the brief 
    • functional modelling, establishing the purpose of the modelling and how evidence is used depending on theaaudience (designer, stakeholder, wider group)
    • how to explore a range of potential concepts to identify potential materials and or functional aspects to the design (this could be based on research, historical and contemporary, through a range of sketches and/or functional modelling to explore the physical nature); identify how the outcome looks/appears, and functions/how it could possibly operate within the identified environment 
    • what evidence is provided when exploring the social nature (who would be using the outcome) and consideration of the stakeholders' age: baby – child – adolescence – 20-30 – middle-aged – elderly, gender, culture, wider community and potential numbers involved using the outcome, indoors – outdoors social acceptability
    • how to maintain ongoing consultation with stakeholder(s) as this is essential to ensure good quality brief development.
      • Use of simple planning tools to schedule meetings at strategic times of the project – Gantt chart/predictive diary/calendar/ on-line tools such as Trello.

Literacy considerations

Support students to understand the specialist language associated with brief development such as "conceptual statement", "specifications", "physical attributes", "functional attributes", and "fitness for purpose", "intended environment/social and moral considerations".

Students also need to have a clear understanding of terms such as "issue", "context", and "need or opportunity". Context is the overall focus of a technological development or of a technological learning experience, while issue refers to a specific subset of the context that will allow needs and opportunities to be identified. For example, the context could be "storage" and an issue associated with that context could be: "There is a lack of cheap storage solutions for electronic gear that appeal to teenagers". From that issue, students then identify possible needs and/or opportunities.

Students also need to understand the significance of words such as "explaining", "describing", "prioritising", "justifying" as it is not possible to undertake brief development at this level without the level of thinking implied by these words. Students will need to be able to confidently communicate the following:

  • Identify: For example, identifying the issue – to identify is to clearly state the issue as a result of investigating and undertaking research of the given context.  
  • Describe: For example, describing the outcome to be developed – to describe is a statement that gives details about the outcome; for example, what it looks like, what it will do.  
  • Explain: For example, explaining the physical and functional attributes required for the outcome – to explain is to describe in detail with reasons the physical and functional attributes required and why they are required.  
  • Prioritise: For example, prioritise social and physical environmental considerations – to prioritise is to consider and justify the importance of the various social and physical environmental considerations. This is not merely assigning a list order but a reasoned argument as to why one aspect is more important than another.
  • Justify: For example, justifying the specifications – to justify is to provide reasoning as to why the specifications were selected. 

Students will also need to develop other literacy skills such as:

  • developing questionnaires and questioning techniques to gain understandings of the issue being explored 
  • undertaking research and using this to inform their work – sift, sort, and synthesise information 
  • using the information to reflect on findings and prioritise considerations to evolve the identified attributes into specifications that clearly detail the outcome to be produced 
  • collating their findings into a portfolio (could include a variety of media – written, digital) that provides coherent evidence of the process undertaken to develop the brief.

Resources to support teaching and learning

Assessment for qualifications

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

  • AS 91354 Technological practice 2.1: Undertake brief development to address an issue 

Key messages from the standard

  • Explanatory note 5 states an outcome is a conceptual design for an outcome and/or the technological outcome itself (prototype). This means the brief development work for this standard can be for either a conceptual design or for an actual outcome. There is no requirement in this standard that the outcome specified in the brief is actually produced by the student – this standard is assessing brief development work and not the students’ ability to produce a conceptual design for an outcome or to actually make the outcome. However, as teachers will appreciate, students will often be more motivated with the brief development work if they know they are going to actually produce the outcome that they are developing the brief for.
  • Explanatory note 4 states the intention that students explore a given context in order to identify their own issue and then go on to identify a need or opportunity in relation to that issue, and develop a brief for an outcome that will resolve that issue. At level 7, students should identify their own issue and hence the issue cannot be provided by the teacher. Also note that clients are not mentioned in the standard so it is not a requirement that students need to be developing a brief for a client issue. Students still need key and wider stakeholders but they do not need a client; however, they may have a client if they wish or there is an opportunity for this to occur naturally.
  • Teachers should ensure students do not move to a preferred solution prior to doing the necessary preliminary investigation. There should be an investigation of the given context in order to identify a suitable issue. Often more than one issue will need to be explored before deciding on one issue for further development. It is helpful if the student gives some rationale for selecting one issue to move forward. Once the student has identified an issue they should investigate several possible needs and/or opportunities prior to selecting one for further development.
  • Explanatory note 3 states the context refers to the wider social and physical environment in which technological development occurs, and provides examples of possible contexts. Students must reflect ongoing consideration of the social and physical environment where the outcome will be developed and situated as they work through the brief development process. This needs to be more than a passing mention! At level 7, students need to reflect ongoing consideration of the social and physical environment where the outcome will be developed and its intended environment, including the need to prioritise the social and physical environmental considerations in order to determine those which are most important. In a digital technologies context, there can be confusion as to the meaning of the physical environment as the outcome is digital. However, there are many physical considerations such as screen resolution, hardware platform, wireless vs wired network access, recording devices for video and audio.
  • Students need to do more than just consult stakeholders. They must evaluate and analyse that feedback from key and wider stakeholders and reflect their feedback into their developing brief. Students should expect to consult with stakeholders as many times as is necessary throughout the brief development process. Students must also weigh feedback up against other priorities to make decisions.
  • Students should submit a final brief and evidence of the process they have followed to develop that brief. The final brief should have two sections:
    • A conceptual statement that communicates the focus and justified purpose of the technological practice to be undertaken to develop a technological outcome. That is, an explanation for what is to be done and why it should be done. Students should be producing this statement based on findings from the exploration and analysis of the context and issue from which the need or opportunity driving the project has been identified.
    • Specifications that define the requirements of a technological outcome in terms of such things as appearance and performance in a way that is measurable. Students should be presenting a set of requirements that need to be satisfied for the outcome to be judged as "fit for purpose".
  • The final brief should have specifications that cover the required physical and functional nature of the outcome. The specifications should be sufficiently detailed to allow for the development of the outcome and the final evaluation of the outcome to assess its fitness for purpose. Note this requirement for high quality specifications is regardless of whether the intention is for the student to carry on and develop the outcome or not. Note that for brief development undertaken when developing a prototype, specifications should be taken to manufacturing specifications. These will be different to those final specifications developed in only the conceptual design standard. Manufacturing specifications will have material specifics/actual sizes/parts and so on. In relation to this standard, the requirement is to produce specifications that allow for the eventual evaluation of the completed outcome, but the actual process of doing that final evaluation against the specifications is not part of the evidence required for this standard.

Resources to support student achievement

Last updated March 26, 2018



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