Problem analysis and thinking tools: an empirical study of non-hierarchical mind mapping
- Publication Type:
- Journal Article
- Design Studies, 2008, 29 (1), pp. 49 - 69
- Issue Date:
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A review of the problem-solving literature related to design-thinking processes revealed that the problem-solving framework utilised by novice designers is missing some significant aspects when compared to the design-thinking framework utilised by expert designers. The central theme of this paper focuses on an early phase of the design process, more specifically, problem analysis and thinking tools that assist in problem analysis. Drawing on educational constructivist theory and concept mapping research found within the domain of cognitive psychology, this paper empirically investigates and discusses why non-hierarchical mind mapping tools are useful as design tools when introduced to a group of first year industrial design students. It illustrates how non-hierarchical mind mapping techniques can guide novice designers (students) in adopting the design problem-solving processes/framework of expert designers. Further, the experiments revealed statistically significant correlations and relationships between the analysis phase and the resultant creative output. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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