module specification

DN5006 - Design Resolution (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Design Resolution
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 30
School The Sir John Cass School of Art, Architecture and Design (The Cass)
Total study hours 300
180 hours Guided independent study
120 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 100%   Project Work
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year City Friday Morning
Year City Friday Afternoon
Year City Tuesday Morning
Year City Tuesday Afternoon

Module summary

Design resolution ensures a confident and complex realisation of your design concepts. Materiality (form, colour, surface and texture) affects meaning and value in all design. This module requires your critical attention to subtle and implicit design details, expressed through materials, aesthetics and construction, considering how material and production selection, manipulation and application inscribes quality and value onto the final resolution of the artefact.

You will explore artefact and material representation and resolution, drawing on concepts and ideas originally generated within the studio. Outcomes will be developed through applied media, material and/ or constructional experimentation including full-scale outcomes or working prototypes. You will realise relevant design solutions for studio briefs, in response to specific end-users and/or sites.

Through in-depth practice-led research, you will consider the social, functional and environmental impacts of products, samples, material choices and the performance of these upon designed outcomes and their users.
You will learn to work to a high level of professional presentation. You will develop a logical and creative approach to design problem solving, appropriate to the needs of users and clients.

Prior learning requirements

Pass & Completion of Prior Level

Module aims

This module seeks to enable you, through discipline-specific practice, to:

  • Research, explore, analyse and consider the construction and materiality of designed artefacts.
  • Examine and undertake materials and process selection with regard to relevant issues of values and significance, cost, aesthetics, and performance.
  • Experiment with and consolidate skills with materials, media and processes relevant to your design practice, in order to make sound and appropriately flexible judgements, taking account of technical, aesthetic and user/ market constraints
  • Manipulate a variety of samples, scaled and detailed resolutions and prototyping for specifying  industry methods accurately, to convey appropriate design solutions.
  • Show critical awareness of audience/ market dimensions of design choices in your work in relation to professional standards within the industry,
  • Engage in responsible design with awareness of relevant social obligations as well as the end-user’s personal, physical, and sensory needs.


Through studio projects, students will normally develop knowledge and experience of:

• aesthetics and user/ market demands of material/process selection, maintenance, energy requirement, disposal, whole-life costing
• materials/ process specification methods
• construction/ production methods and practices found in commercial practice
• technical conventions of professional drawing/ outworking appropriate to industry standards
• subcontracting industries
• varied production techniques and technologies
• prototyping & sampling methods
• research & analysis techniques via site user research and testing

Learning and teaching

Projects will seek to enable a range of learning opportunities such as:

  • study groups, face-to-face and on WebLearn
  • student discussion blog
  • online personal portfolio to encourage reflective practice
  • digital log of progress through the module and its projects
  • students develop resource library online
  • team working projects
  • contextual site and industry visits
  • lectures, seminars, demonstrations, in-class exercises, homework assignments and peer critiques

Learning outcomes

At the end of the module, you will be able to:

Knowledge and Understanding
Research and make sound media, material, construction or process choices for a range of contexts, defending your choices

Cognitive Intellectual Skills
Consider and balance the complex and competing demands made by the practical, creative and aesthetic issues linked to material, construction or process selection.

Transferable Skills
Accurately express your design intentions in respect of the samples, materials, prototypes and processes through a range of industry standard realisation and communication techniques, informed by users, clients and social context.

Subject Specific Practical Skills
Acquire, practice and apply to a working professional standard, appropriate realisation techniques and technical competences for material, process and construction-investigation, testing specification and experimentation

Assessment strategy

In the end of project reviews, students are expected to produce a coherent exhibition and presentation, demonstrating project development, process and findings, together with individual critical evaluation of relative successes and failures, and to be able communicate and debate these with others.

Project work will be formatively assessed and reflected upon in feedback throughout, including continuing independent practice and associated health and safety procedures. All students are required to undertake formal interim presentations with evidence of continuous reflective journals responding to studio critique and tutorial guidance. Work presented will be subject to formal studio feedback from a panel of disciplinary specialists. This will inform final assessment outcomes and must be considered and acted upon by the student.

The final mark is given at the end of the module, demonstrated through a portfolio of project work (as specified in project briefs). Work must be carefully organised and presented to indicate the development of work and the content clearly labeled. Students must attend timetabled studio and workshop sessions.


Brepohl Prof. Dr. E, (2003) The Theory and Practice of Goldsmithing, Brynmorgen Press
Clarkson, J (Ed.) (2003) Inclusive Design, Springer
Colchester,C (2000) The New Textiles, Thames & Hudson
Fuad-Luke A (2003) The Eco-Design Handbook, Thames and Hudson

Jackson, A. & Day, D. (1995) Collins Good Wood Handbook, Harper Collins
Maier, T & Tyrnauer, M. (2012). Bottega Veneta. Italy: Rizzoli International Publications.
Mazza S (1996) In the Bag, Chronicle Books 

Milton, A., & Rodgers, P., (2013) Research Methods for Product Design), Laurence King
Papanek, V. (2003) The Green Imperative, Thames & Hudson
Smith, P. (2003) Sustainability at the Cutting Edge, Architectural Press
Stoller, D (2000) Stitch & Bitch Nation, Berg
Thomson, R (2007) Manufacturing Processes for Design Professionals, Thames and Hudson
Ursprung, P (2006). Studio Olafur Eliasson . Berlin: Taschen GmbH.

Additional texts and other reference materials will be identified by studio tutors annually in support of the specific studio theme.