Information designers are perfectly suited to tackle projects that must consider large amounts of complex data, multiple use scenarios, or sensitive cultural or social issues. We design medicine packaging inserts, operational instructions for industrial machinery, interactive objects, information for emergencies, complex data visualizations, and educational materials. We combine graphic design skills with content management, research, usability, information architecture, rhetoric, and technical writing.
For example, during the Fall 2017 semester our students tackled the following issues:
- design for disaster preparedness (in collaboration with MRU’s Geology students and faculty)
- body positivity
- sustainable cities and communities
- peace, justice, and strong institutions
- communication between physicians and patients
- industry, innovation and infrastructure
…and aimed to answer some pretty critical questions:
- How might we implement a better system that eliminates the need for any adoptable animals to be euthanized?
- How might me enhance accessiblity to the world for individuals with physical/sensory disabilites?
- How might we help women in abusive relationships get the support and resources they need?
- How may we educate youth to be empathetic in order to reduce intolerance in society?
- How might we help Calgarians be responsible consumers in the food industry?
Here are a few of our course projects:
In this 3rd-year project, students practiced finding one idea about a movie, then communicating that idea through graphical data representation. Their main objective was to think about some aspect of a movie in terms of data, then graphically communicate that without drawing out unnecessary details of the plot. This project gave us the opportunity to explore: the..
“The urge to design—to consider a situation, imagine a better situation, and act to create that improved situation—goes back to our prehuman ancestors. Making tools helped us to become what we are, and design helped to make us human.” Carl DiSalvo, Adversarial Design. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2012. Print. In September 2016, ID launched the..
Throughout the Fall 2017 semester, senior-level Information Design students were asked to use the Human Centred Design Process to examine one of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals; a framework for the most important challenges that we are facing today as a society, with topics ranging from access to clean water and healthy food, safety..
The Canadian Alliance for Community Service-Learning (CSL) as an educational approach integrating community service with intentional learning activities, working together toward outcomes that are mutually beneficial. The community partner for this project, Choosing Wisely Canada, has indicated that there can be a ‘disconnect’ in communication between physician and patients regarding decisions that affect a patient’s..
Usability testing is part of developing user-centric design. Conducting a usability test measures the task success, user satisfaction, and errors of a product. The data gathered from a usability test could answer questions such as: Will users recommend the product? Do users feel good about the product or themselves after using it? What are the..
In this 3-rd year visual communication project, students were asked to find an interesting, unique story within the broader topic of disaster preparedness, while demonstrating the use of tension, and addressing the needs and characteristics of an assigned audience. The starting point for this project, in terms of content, was provided by Dr. Katherine Boggs..
Learning how to perceive, name, describe, and manipulate visually-accessed information is an important component of an information designer’s education. Whether its creating a poster, an info graphic, an instructional manual, a web site, or an app, the principles and elements of design help us construct visually-based material in ways that are effective, meaningful, useful, usable,..
In this project, 1st-year students explored the idea that the whole (the totality of a design) is greater than the sum of the individual parts. They blind-selected one noun and one adjective, then used those two words to communicate the combined message of them put together. Constraints Each design rendered on 6 inch by 6..
Information design transforms data into high-quality and understandable information. Using Community Service Learning (CSL) to connect students with community clients through applied projects, senior Information Design students produced a series of prototypes based on instructional design theory to assist older adults in creating understanding for the use of compression stockings. Broadcasting students were assigned to..