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Global Summer Programme: IS 440

This guide contains print and electronic resources for courses offered in the SMU Global Summer Programme 2016

IS440: Design Thinking For IT Projects by Dr. Benjamin Gan

This course focuses on using Design Thinking activities to solve a problem that uses an IT solution. Students will be able understand the design thinking concepts such as empathy, observation, interview, ideation, prototype and user centric testing as well as IT innovations in automation, usability and improving lives. Students will learn by studying SMU IS student project case studies. The case studies show what worked and why they failed. They will emphasize the strength and limitations of IT solutions, team work and project management.

A major part of this course involves doing a project with a real problem that the student proposes or selects from a list of partners. The project requires students to empathize with the target user, share the discovered insights, brainstorm ideas by exploring IT solutions, scope the project, present the storyboard, build a prototype, test with users and repeat the iteration over again. Experiencing these Design Thinking activities allows the student to incorporate an innovative mindset into their daily lives when solving problems.

Learning by doing the interactive activities such as empathising with users, we hope you will discover what people really care about and how they use IT solutions. We find this method of learning helps retain deeper learning than being presented with theories. Working on a real project in a team is more interesting and helps us acquire inter disciplinary skills that include managing projects, team work, understanding diversity and incremental creativity.

At the end of the semester, you will present your final design work in a session to a panel of peer judges.


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The use of electronic resources must comply with the Appropriate Use of Electronic Resources Policy and Singapore Management University Acceptable Use Policy