Empathic Research Frameworks

Course Code: UXD 5001

Academic Year: 2021-2022

More than ever, ethnography and design are influencing and being influenced by the complex dynamics of social, economic, political and cultural change. The value of ethnography within organizations continues to exert influence as more companies incorporate research to enhance the bottom line and the organization's competitive advantage. Students study ethnography as a core practice that drives design innovation by situating humans and their real lived experience at the heart of the design process. In this course, students draw on the multiple connections among people, places, industries and disciplines, exploring how ethnography and design practices highlight needs, explore opportunities and share expertise. Students learn numerous ways to build empathy through interviews, observations, taking field notes, and capturing video and audio evidence. They make sense of observed qualitative data through collaborative methods and present their insights in ways that make their findings sharable, relatable and social. Students recognize and account for the tensions and opportunities that surround organizational change and the need to constantly uphold the value of research in positive growth and innovation.