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Course content

This is a creative, project-based course focusing on the practical and theoretical study of product design and its relationship to interaction. As an advanced product designer, this course supports your continued development and will refine your practice in interaction and user-centred product design.

The course explores academic theories as well as industry practice within interactive media, digital arts, entertainment and product design; and is a combination of two separate fields: product design and interactive media.

In Interactive Product Futures you will focus on user-centred design processes and research and analyse “user interaction” as your primary focus. The emphasis is on technology-mediated communication between humans and objects or spaces, allowing you to apply design and apply technological solutions to people’s infinite needs. You will also examine how technology gives personality to objects, and thereby how to ensure technology and design are more empathetic to people and their behaviours.

In the early units of the course you will be given short project briefs in which to design, implement, test and evaluate solutions in the form of an interactive product. Each project brief may take the form of an online or offline product; for example: an online quiz, an e-commerce type application, a toy. This is also an opportunity to produce a series of creative works within the specialisation of rapid prototyping (3D printing), animation, game design, web design, installation art, projection mapping, creative coding, computation design and entertainment media. The aim is to provide you with the opportunity to develop a software solution to a given problem, or aspect of a larger problem.

You will be encouraged to experiment with new ways of working with objects/scenarios and their integration with technology both creatively and collaboratively, and to apply emerging and existing technological solutions through personal fabrication, research and the experimental application of technology.

The course promotes cross disciplinary thinking as an approach to product design, so that the relationship between interactivity, artefacts, environments and the systems and organisations in which they operate can be re-examined.

By studying the course you will develop your creative design skills to innovate and influence product and interaction design practice and realise the commercial potential of your design proposals.

- Collaborative project
'The Digital Gym' project, which allowed students to research how emerging technologies are applied and user behaviour enhanced to provide a distinct, immersive gym experience on the Greenwich Peninsula.

Study units

- Technology Issues
- Business and Innovation
- Research Process
- Concept and Prototyping
- Major project

Through the Business and Innovation unit you will have the opportunity to explore the generation of innovative new business models that will help to shape your emerging project concept.

The Technology Issues unit encourages you to engage and explore emerging new technologies as well as skills in scripting and coding, first within a group, then as a cross-disciplinary, and finally in an individual project.

Through the Research Process unit, you will explore academic theoretical frameworks and research methodologies and their application within industry practice.

In both the Technology Issues and Concept and Prototyping units, youwill explore the dialogue between product and user, the function, usability and forms, flow and creativity and user experiences.

The course will culminate in your final Major Project.

Programme Aims

All postgraduate courses at Ravensbourne provide students with the opportunity to develop advanced skills in the conceptualisation and practical realisation of innovative creative projects in their discipline area and provide them with the entrepreneurial skills to realise their commercial potential. These courses share the following common aims:

- to develop advanced creative practitioners with the potential to originate, innovate or influence practice in their discipline area;

- to equip students with a comprehensive understanding of the core principles and technology underpinning their creative project and the theoretical frameworks within which to locate it;

- to underpin students’ creative practice with the entrepreneurial skills and business awareness necessary to turn concepts into commercially viable realities;

- to develop students’ skills in independent learning, self-reflection and research skills necessary to sustain advanced creative practice and scholarship;

- to offer a stimulating environment for postgraduate students which is both supportive and flexible in relation to their learning needs and a creative space in which to incubate their ideas.

Visit the Interactive Product Futures (MA) page on the Ravensbourne website for more details!

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