Fall 2020

  1. The purpose of the course is to introduce students to advanced CAD techniques while enhancing their design processes by utilizing additional CAD applications. Extending the department's CAD education from 'Designing with Solidworks,' several categories will be offered to explore further CAD applications including Rhino with plug-ins, Cinema 4D, MasterCAM with SolidWorks, unreal Engine, and more. The specific offerings vary year to year.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $100.00
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Open to junior and above
  2. The 6-credit Advanced Design studios offer second semester juniors and seniors the opportunity to investigate product, socially responsible, and sustainable design; innovation through science and technology and other topics in contemporary practice. These studios are designed to strengthen the student's ability to conduct research, ideation, material exploration, presentation, and concept validation. Studios meet two days per week.
    ID juniors and seniors are required to take a total of three advanced studios.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Open to non-majors pending seat availability and permission of Department.
    Registration of Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  3. The course aims to invite students in a reflection about the product/industrial design discipline, the limits of its traditional canons and the potential for a more inclusive understanding of its principles. Starting from elements of modern design history, through a series of lectures provided by the instructor and guests speakers, the students will discuss how elements such as gender, race, social structures or cultural heritage are projected into the process and the outcomes of the design activity. This seminar will be taught remotely and will require students to engage in extensive reading, research and debates. Students will be asked to contribute with their critical thinking through various multimedia platforms both as individuals and as part of a team.
    Open to ID majors only; seniors and graduate students.
  4. Climate Crisis & Design, is a seminar, punctuated by hands-on studio projects, which investigates the multiple intersections of climate change and design. What role should a designer play to maximize their positive impact on the overwhelming challenge of climate change? What balance of breaking-into and breaking down existing systems and stakeholders is most tactical? When does effective strategy become manipulation and why does it matter? We explore essential questions like these and many more.

    This course has four main phases: Illustration, Inquiry, Iteration, and Inspiration. The first phase involves a substantial and collaborative design audit of the state of design and climate, with students researching and presenting on topics such as existing standards, communication strategies, and adjacent social movements. In the second phase, students engage in a design research process towards problem discovery and definition. The third phase takes on this self-defined problem from a prospective view, drawing on techniques of foresight and incremental iteration from the present. The fourth and final phase of the course takes a futuring view, drawing on theories of system design and techniques of backcasting. These two final phases, with their propositional deliverables, will include discussion of audience definition, documentation, and media strategy with the goal of maximizing the strategic reach of these projects in their lives beyond the course. By studying historical context (i.e. Carson, McKibben), contemporary environmental meta-criticism (i.e. Nordhaus & Shellenberger, Latour), primary text artifacts (i.e. Jemisin, IPCC reports, LCAs), theory (i.e. Meadows, Morton) and thought-leading designers (i.e. Orf, McDonough, Ginsberg), students will leave with a well-rounded and interdisciplinary grounding in the state of the conversation and how to create work into its gaps and over its cutting edges. Their research will culminate in four portfolio projects grounded in critical thinking about the most important challenge of our lifetime.
    Open to ID majors only; seniors and graduate students.
    Open to non-majors pending seat availability and permission of instructor.
  5. A Collaborative Study Project (CSP) allows a team of students to work collaboratively to complete a faculty supervised project of independent study.
    Usually, a CSP is supervised by two faculty members, but with approval it may be supervised by one faculty member. Its purpose is to meet individual student needs by providing an alternative to regularly offered courses, though it is not a substitute for a course if that course is regularly offered.
    Permission of Academic Advisor and Department Head is required in advance of posted Registrar's deadline.
    GPA of 3.0 or higher is required.
    Register by completing the Collaborative Study Application available on the Registrar's website.
  6. This course is an introduction to conceptual and manual skills that represent necessary steps in design evolution. Students strengthen skills by completion of several processes and exercises. Critical thinking and concept generation is a primary focus, drawing and model making activities help to establish this process. Throughout the course each student will focus on improving communication skills and the ability to project or sell ideas.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $15.00
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  7. The purpose of this course is to expose students to SolidWorks, a widely used solid modeling software program. Students will learn how to translate their hand-sketches into three-dimensional CAD models. Lectures and assignments will focus on the development of form as it applies to plastic part design and assembly. Physical models will be realized through ABS rapid prototyping allowing students to experience true plastic part design.
    Students should anticipate additional costs for supplies and materials.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.

  8. Graduate Communication Introduction is a studio course about writing and speaking as design tools. We think about writing and speaking in two ways. First as a communication tool and second as a design tool.
    On the communication side, we address the many ways that writing and speaking surrounds a designed object (as a proposal, as sales copy, as instructions to users, as specs for manufacture, as criticism, etc.). We think about the audiences for those various kinds of communication and how to think about what they want and need. We look at examples of great design communication and we develop and practice our own skills for succinctly explaining our ideas.
    On the design tool side, we think about the many ways that writing can help clarify and quickly test out ideas. We think about writing as a form of rapid prototyping alongside sketching, model making, etc. We talk about what writing is good at, when other methods might be more useful, and when to combine methods. We explore techniques such as design fiction, scenario planning, and other narrative methodologies that are used in industrial design and related fields.
    Graduate major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  9. The execution of two assigned design projects provides the framework for a thorough examination of the design process. This structured and intensive studio will focus on the relationship between the implementation of sound design methodologies and successful problem solving in the design process. This first studio experience is intended to provide the methodological infrastructure for the remainder of the M.I.D. thesis experience.
    Graduate major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  10. Graduate Thesis Communications I is a studio course run in parallel with our sibling studio course which focuses on design research methods. Together, we will spend the fall semester casting about, planning and prototyping towards some kind of design proposal or product for execution in the spring. We think about writing in two ways. First as a design tool and second as a communication tool. On the tool for design side, we think about the many ways that writing can help clarify and quickly test out ideas. We think about writing as a form of rapid prototyping alongside sketching, model making, etc. We talk about what writing is good at, when other methods might be more useful, and when to combine methods. We use writing to help clarify and crystalize the thesis plan. On the communication side, we think about the many ways that writing surrounds a designed object (as a proposal, as sales copy, as instructions to users, as specs for manufacture, as criticism, etc.). We think about the audiences for those various kinds of writing and how to think about what they want and need. We talk about the thesis as a tool for explaining the design but also as a tool for helping you advance your career goals. At the end of the course, you will have a partially complete draft of your thesis. which will set you up for an excellent spring.
    Graduate major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  11. This course introduces the Graduate Thesis project starting with the development of a research question through secondary research reading methods. This question has its assumptions articulated and verified through experimental making and primary research methods that engage specific audiences for qualitative discourse.
    Graduate major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  12. History is a powerful tool; a basic understanding of the history of design and familiarity with important design movements and designers is essential for thorough design work. By examining the work of other designers, we are better able to identify our own interests and concerns, and avoid repeating mistakes that have been navigated in the past. This lecture-based class will present the history of Industrial Design in a way that links it to today's studio work, and offers connection points to link past innovation and design activity with future design success. The lectures present a chronological overview of the profession of Industrial Design and its antecedents. Topics discussed will include major design movements, significant designers, manufacturers, and design-related companies, innovations in technology and material use, the development of sales, marketing, and user-focused designing, and the history of design process. Coursework includes extensive reading, in-class presentations based on independent research, projects, and writing.
    Major requirement; ID majors
    Registration of Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
    Liberal Arts elective credit for non-majors pending seat availability.
  13. This course will acclimate new graduate students to the shop environment of the Industrial Design Department. The Metal, Wood and Model Shops are invaluable resources, clarifying pragmatic aspects of the design process from general feasibility of manufacturing to the challenges of translating concepts into tangible objects. This course covers excerpted information from both undergraduate courses Wood I and Metals I and emphasizes safety in the utilization of shop facilities.
    Graduate major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  14. You will be introduced to the fundamentals of footwear design and construction based on two different shoe styles: pump/court/slip-on and derby. During that first project you will develop skills for working with a last, pattern making, sewing, construction and finishing techniques. These skills will be applied to a second project of your own choosing and design. You will gain general understanding of the parameters of the last and its correlation to feet and pattern-making. You will gain general understanding of footwear production. From Sketching demo to Spec Specification Sheet Overview to different construction techniques applied. You will acquire a general understanding of footwear construction and terminology. You will learn basic pattern making skills and how to develop your own ideas/styles using the skills acquired. You will acquire skills necessary to work with the tools/machines on hand (knives, sewing machine, lasting pliers etc.) You will develop the skills necessary for constructing basic cemented footwear from start to finish, applying it to different styles. You will learn about materials used in shoemaking, in particular leather, but also alternative materials. For the second half of the semester (final project) you will apply and experiment using techniques/skills learned on a style of your choosing, incorporating your personal skill set to design and build your own unique footwear project (either a pair or two singles).
    Open to Industrial Design majors only; juniors and above.
  15. The Independent Study Project (ISP) allows students to supplement the established curriculum by completing a faculty supervised project for credit in a specific area of interest. Its purpose is to meet individual student needs by providing an alternative to regularly offered courses.
    Permission of Academic Advisor and Department Head is required in advance of posted Registrar's deadline.
    GPA of 3.0 or higher is required.
    Register by completing the Independent Study Application available on the Registrar's website.
  16. This course introduces the students to methods, materials, and manufacturing processes that translate design activity into finished goods. A significant portion of downstream design activity is devoted to manufacturing issues - the techniques by which materials are selected, shaped, and then assembled. Students will be evaluated based upon success of weekly field study research assignments and a final exam.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  17. This course gives the student a hands-on opportunity to develop design skills through the interaction with industrial materials that have strictly defined properties. Experimenting with these materials and the processes by which they are manipulated and formed promotes innovative thinking, problem solving and idea development. Students will achieve a more precise, professional and sensitive approach to design while broadening their technical skill base.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  18. The professional internship provides valuable exposure to a professional setting, enabling students to better establish a career path and define practical aspirations. Internship proposals are carefully vetted to determine legitimacy and must meet the contact hour requirements listed in the RISD Course Announcement.
    Permission of Academic Advisor and Department Head is required.
  19. Juniors take two 3-credit Special Topic Design Studios in the Fall semester. Juniors choose one 3-credit option from the "Content" category such as Packaging, Typography, Play, or UI/UX, and the other option from the "Process" category such as Casting, Soft Goods or Prototyping. Students will gain multiple competencies by utilizing techniques and methodologies through practice and process. Each studio meets once per week.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Open to non-majors pending seat availability and permission of Department
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  20. This class will cover basic camera optics and lighting techniques necessary to generate high quality digital images for either print or digital portfolio applications. The focus of the class is to master manual controls on the digital camera such as film and shutter speed settings in conjunction with aperture openings to obtain whatever the desired effect might be to best represent two and three-dimensional objects. Manipulation of natural and artificial lighting is the other main focus of the class. Students will learn the use of fill and bounce cards with sun, tungsten and strobe light sources. The emphasis will be on the strobe lighting studio where through a series of assignments students will learn direct, diffused reflected lighting techniques.
    Students will be required to participate in the final critique during the final week of the semester.
    Open to juniors and above.
  21. This workshop teaches the basics of Rhino and introduces students to 3D modeling through an "exploratory process." Recognizing that experts devise many approaches to surface modeling Rhino Workshop: Exploratory Learning for 3D modeling uses four discrete projects each with a specific set of commands and features that will be explored as students fulfill the project's design brief and discover their own operational style. This approach flips the classroom experience - students use tutorials as necessary to identify techniques for basic surface modeling.

    By the completion of the workshop, students will be able to use Rhino as a design tool in their own design process - using the software to simulate projects in 3 dimensions or exporting 3D files to 2D for presentation purposes.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $100.00
    Open to sophomores and above.
    Open to non-majors by permission of Instructor.
  22. Philosophically, the ID Department believes that students become better designers when they have an intimate knowledge of a range of natural and synthetic materials. In this course, students will learn about the properties of natural wood and engineered wood-based materials, investigate the related technical processes, and evaluate how this information is both connected to and influenced by the design process. Students will work with materials directly and master skills needed to manipulate these materials. They will develop projects that allow them to engage in the design and development process, promote creativity, problem solving, and the correct use of materials. Facility procedures, safety, and care and use of tools and equipment will be stressed.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  23. This course will deal with advanced woodworking processes, including milling and machinery use, laminate and steam bending, plywood and veneer. Techniques in using natural and synthetic materials connected with furniture will be covered.
    Major elective; ID majors only

Wintersession 2021

  1. The purpose of the course is to introduce students to advanced CAD techniques while enhancing their design processes by utilizing additional CAD applications. Extending the department's CAD education from 'Designing with Solidworks,' several categories will be offered to explore further CAD applications including Rhino with plug-ins, Cinema 4D, MasterCAM with SolidWorks, unreal Engine, and more. The specific offerings vary year to year.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $100.00
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Open to junior and above
  2. A Collaborative Study Project (CSP) allows two students to work collaboratively to complete a faculty supervised project of independent study.
    Usually, a CSP is supervised by two faculty members, but with approval it may be supervised by one faculty member. Its purpose is to meet individual student needs by providing an alternative to regularly offered courses, though it is not a substitute for a course if that course is regularly offered.
  3. Included but not limited to shoes, Footwear is an everyday commodity that revolves around our ever changing culture. Their primitive purpose is to protect the wearer from elements but we never just stop there. As foot protection is taken for granted, their actual purposes range from performance enhancement, status, statement, sculpture and so on.

    In this course students will apply knowledge from contemporary shoe making methods and manufacturing processes in order to bring their unique design to life. We will start our first module on how to translate 2D to 3D and vice versa by using sketches and last draping in parallel to lectures about footwear culture and student presentation on their critical footwear opinions.

    In the second module we will learn about how to develop & experiment with tooling (Sole of the footwear) from different materials & methods differ from traditional shoe making but still in the realm of product design practice. Students will experiment with different materials and methods of how to fasten footwear to our feet in order to develop their own design of slippers (including but not limited to Flip-Flop, Cocs, Tabi).

    On the last module, students will develop their own experimental footwear based on their interest, including but not limited to Sculptural piece / Activity-based Footwear / Traditional Footwear / Speculative wear / Material innovation, with the aim of making high fidelity wearable prototype.

    As the course has moved online, we will also investigate the methodology of In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) in parallel with each student's own practice. This is to give student thinking tools and new perspectives to our current ?using what we have? situation.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $50.00
  4. The aim of the course is to open a window on the complex and multifaceted present design environment. A preliminary overview about the major historic design movements will be followed by an extensive description of the design's state of the art together with a spot on the latest trends. Students will be invited to think and tinker, learning how to approach a design project, how to formulate proper research questions and how to use analog and digital prototyping to experiment, validate and communicate their own ideas. They will also initiate a dialogue with forms, functions, and interactions, defining the borders of the design activity and the actual role of designers. The main goal of the course is to get students familiar with the design vocabulary and with the basic tools involved in design processes.
    Areas covered: Ideas and concepts creation, quantitative and qualitative research, sketch models making, digital fabrication, physical computing, project's narrative and storytelling.
    Graduate major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration of Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  5. Emerging technologies have brought the idea of smart homes from Sci-fi to real life. We can see all kinds of smart products: floor cleaning robots, intelligent gateways, smart speakers, smart trash cans, etc. Societies are fascinated by the smart future, is it a shallow fixation? What is a smart object? What needs to be smart? Is smart = high-tech? How has the tech industry limited our imagination and agency over ?smart? things?

    We will explore these topics to define our own definitions of smart, and build our own smart piece. The class will be divided into 3 stages. The first stage is to learn and understand circuits and sensors. The skills we will learn include circuits wiring, soldering, documentation, Arduino programming, and some basic mechanisms to realize movement. In the second stage, we will learn about and discuss D.I.Y. repair or hacking movements around the world (Jugaad, Gambiarri?) and exercise critical and speculative design as an imaginative tool to offer alternatives to the objects, tools and rituals at home. By the third stage, our fundamental understanding of electronics and our reflections on the concept ?smart? will allow us to hack an object or activity from/for the home and students will have time to work on a final project of choice.

    From this course, we will get comfortable and confident designing and rapid prototyping with electronics. We will also get an overview on the concept of ?smart?. Students should have any laptop/desktop (Windows/Mac) for the Arduino IDE (free program).

    Material Cost Disclaimer: A tool-kit will be available for pick-up before the end of Fall semester. If you add the class late - in the Add/Drop period - the equivalent cost of a kit will be refunded as RISDBucks and you will be responsible for purchasing the required materials (a list will be provided). The materials are common electronic prototyping material and can likely be sourced from local suppliers anywhere.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $100.00
  6. In this product design studio, we will dissect an existing product, analyze a market segment, and redesign the product to fit the described market. The methodology used to complete this task will be accelerated, giving students an overview of a typical industrial design process. Students will be exposed to design drawing techniques, foam modeling methods, and the concept of designing for consumers.
  7. The Independent Study Project (ISP) allows students to supplement the established curriculum by completing a faculty supervised project for credit in a specific area of interest. Its purpose is to meet individual student needs by providing an alternative to regularly offered courses.
    Permission of Academic Advisor and Department Head is required in advance of posted Registrar's deadline.
    GPA of 3.0 or higher is required.
    Register by completing the Independent Study Application available on the Registrar's website.
  8. The Independent Study Project (ISP) allows students to supplement the established curriculum by completing a faculty supervised project for credit in a specific area of interest. Its purpose is to meet individual student needs by providing an alternative to regularly offered courses.
    Permission of Instructor and GPA of 3.0 or higher is required.
    Register by completing the Independent Study Application available on the Registrar's website; the course is not available via web registration.
  9. As our planet degrades and the human population grows, resources are becoming scarce. This course will explore material efficiency in designed objects. Through weekly challenges based on weight, strength, and material, students will solve problems competitively, collaboratively, and individually. Natural materials such as wood, paper, and fiber will be contrasted with high performance materials such as metal, carbon composites, and foams. Demonstrations of lightweight fabrication techniques, materials, and design tools will supplement assignments. Each student will produce a final object or product designed and made with the skills and knowledge gained throughout the course. While fabrication skills will be taught, students will be encouraged to explore the scalability of their final projects, and consider outsourcing as a viable way of producing their designs. The text Ultra Light, Super Strong, by Nicola Stattmann will be required reading, and students will research and reference the book for in class presentations. Guest lectures and critics will supplement class-time as well as critiques. The course will emphasize presentation skills, documentation, and critique as well as the work produced.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $100.00
  10. The structural designs that occur in nature ? in molecules, in crystals, in living cells, in galaxies ? is the proper source of inspiration for the design of man-made structures.
    -- Peter Pearce

    Spheres, meanders, spirals, branching, helix, polygon - Nature develops its structure strategies in order to reach always optimal energetic solutions on a long term basis. The most usual applied arrangements include pneus, shells, trees, webs and skeletons. All of them are controlled by four main factors: nature of forces, global form, local design and material. Additional parameters sometimes change substantially the resulting geometry, and also some other general features as flexibility, integration, continuity, or self-straining are surrounding in most examples.

    As humans, we learn from nature. For centuries, architects, engineers and designers have been searching for the most efficient structural arrangements for their projects. Innumerable pioneering design works take inspiration from nature. Instead of looking simply at the visual and aesthetic qualities of the biological world, ?real? biomimicry focuses on learning from how living things meet specific functions and how we can imagine and apply these adaptations into future settings, where human-centered design will be expanded into nature-centered - we learn from nature, and we design for a better nature that larger organic communities would live with and benefit from each other.

    The class will dive deep into the natural structure strategies, and how can those strategies be used in shaping a better nature scenario that benefits not only humans but moreover, the whole organic system. By form studies as well as rapid prototyping with accessible resources from RISD Nature Lab and online resources, students will gain the ability of analyzing different species, identifying different functions and understanding the context of adaptations. Furthermore, students will apply certain principles they observed from previous research processes into a scenario, where humans might act as a role of ?contributor? and design for nature. The class consists of 3 major projects: a multimedia study of natural forms, a group project of integrating natural systems and human activities, and a final individual design project. This class aims at finding clues about the efficiency of natural structures that could be exploited into design. After this short tour across natural shape and structure strategies, students are able to observe and analyze surrounding nature objects, gain knowledge and insights, and apply what they learned into developing nature-driven and nature-centric design.
  11. The professional Internship provides valuable exposure to a professional setting, enabling students to better establish a career path and define practical aspirations. Internship proposals are carefully vetted to determine legitimacy and must meet the contact hour requirements listed in the RISD Course Announcement.
  12. This is a 5 week online crash course where students will engage in both hardware making and idea conceptualization as we iterate from mock-up, first prototypes to wearable (Soft Tech). Students will be expected to play as both designer and engineer, weaving together and assembling their own wearable assets. Main course work will follow a series of video tutorials guiding them through engineering skills like soldering and pcbs. Students will be expected to challenge themselves on how they think about wearables in their own lives during the creation and iteration phases.

    The class framework has an emphasis on "doing." By literally engaging the medium, following through each step, and then reflecting upon the work as a group we can begin to learn and teach each other. The tutorials are designed in a binge distribution method, some students might quickly jump ahead and have opportunities to deviate and incorporate new methodologies. At the very least, if you follow all the tutorials, at the end of the 5 weeks, you should have your own wearable!

    Through the project we will be discussing the concept of humanistic intelligence, where hardware, software and humans are seamless. Humanistic intelligence arises from placing humans in the feedback loop of a computational process, where the human and computer are inextricably intertwined. The class will collectively speculate on what new kinds of awareness and augmentations that can be developed through wearable technology. Traditionally, we are taught to think that the 5 key senses (sight, sound, smell, taste, touch) form our understanding of the world, but there are several others like the sense of limbs that affect our balance or gut instinct that result in hunger. Through our speculations students will discover, discuss, propose and experiment with new senses by making wearables to transmit information to our brains about ourselves and the environment.

    If you are registered to this course, you must pick up your course kit before the end of the fall semester. If you are adding the course once wintersession has begun in the Add/Drop period, you won't receive the prepared kit, rather you are given RISDbucks instead and are responsible for purchasing required material/supply/tools yourself.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $250.00
  13. A lot of electronic devices are released in the market and disappear. Where are they going? Do we pay attention to their whereabouts? Designers are responsible for what they make. We, industrial designers, should consider carefully the adverse impacts of new technological innovations before we materialize them.

    In class, we will explore wearable devices that are closely attached to the human body. With innovative thinking of design, production, use, and disposal wearable technologies can be part of our tasks towards more sustainable societies. By looking into the relationships between the human body, products, and sustainability, students will have a more intuitive sense of form and material and ability to think about how they could be put together.

    This course introduces students to think about how we can make wearable devices sustainable in many different ways as well as research and rapid prototype study on the human body and wearable devices. Final project will be making prototypes for the project, digital renderings and organizing the whole project process. This course will include lectures/demos, project assignments, presentations, and critiques.
  14. This course is for industrial design graduate students in their final year to work independently on their graduate thesis. The instructor serves an advisory and support role in all projects. Students must submit for instructor agreement, a written proposal for work planned and the criteria for evaluation. Course meetings are arranged individually, and / or with the group as needed.
    Graduate major elective; ID graduate thesis students only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  15. Currently U/I - U/X interfaces are applied towards several digital graphic formats: smart phone ios/Android, tablet/watch, Windows OS/Mac OS, or custom sized interfaces for products like ATM machines or car dashboards. The instructors professional design practice currently focuses on UI/UX design and future forecasting towards corporate strategies to best take advantage of the digital transformation many large corporations are being faced with at this time. Students learn methodologies and tools around smart phone app design development. Areas of design process include: research and app concept definition; conduct low-fidelity brainstorming and exploration around the users; develop the look, navigation and branding of the app; and at the end build high-fidelity prototypes incorporating app navigation interaction.

    No prior knowledge of UI/UX development is required. Students build working prototypes of cellular interface that functions and navigates. Coding experience is not necessary for this course and will not be taught. Students that have coding experience that may use those skills for app prototypes developed along with Adobe XD, Photoshop and Illustrator.
    Requirements: Adobe Creative Suit and the Adobe Cloud
  16. This course is a 20 hour continuation of the manual skills that represent necessary steps in design evolution as proposed during the fall semester of Design Principles One. Students strengthen skills through the completion of several processes and exercises. Critical thinking and concept generation is a primary focus, with drawing, and model-making activities help to establish this process. Throughout the course, each student will focus on improving craftsmanship and prototyping skills in various materials.
    Major elective; ID majors only.
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.

Spring 2021

  1. The purpose of the course is to introduce students to advanced CAD techniques while enhancing their design processes by utilizing additional CAD applications. Extending the department's CAD education from 'Designing with Solidworks,' several categories will be offered to explore further CAD applications including Rhino with plug-ins, Cinema 4D, MasterCAM with SolidWorks, unreal Engine, and more. The specific offerings vary year to year.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $100.00
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Open to junior and above
  2. The 6-credit Advanced Design studios offer second semester juniors and seniors the opportunity to investigate product, socially responsible, and sustainable design; innovation through science and technology and other topics in contemporary practice. These studios are designed to strengthen the student's ability to conduct research, ideation, material exploration, presentation, and concept validation. Studios meet two days per week.
    ID juniors and seniors are required to take a total of three advanced studios.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Open to non-majors pending seat availability and permission of Department.
    Registration of Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  3. Advanced Soft Goods allows students to continue expanding their knowledge of sewing skills and construction techniques for making products from fabric. Students should have completed Soft Goods as a Special Topic Studio or demonstrate basic sewing ability. This course does not address draping or patterning for apparel design; however, students may explore performance wear. Students will orient the projects in this course towards bags of all types, i.e. backpacks, waist pouches, cross body bags, etc. Camping equipment, products for the interior of homes, the elderly, children's products, medical equipment, and pet market products are all examples of potential projects. Projects that are leather will be difficult to complete as we do not have the equipment needed to create professional-looking results.

    Note: The department has access to four sewing machines. Many students find it useful to borrow a sewing machine or purchase a simple, inexpensive machine from Amazon. In past years, Singer or Brother machines have been purchased for around $150.00. Some students divide costs and share a machine. Materials for all projects will be your responsibility to purchase.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $150.00
    Open to juniors and above.
    Prerequisite: ID-20ST-13 or demonstrates basic sewing skills.
    Permission of Department required.
  4. Turning an idea into a sustainable reality requires a fundamental understanding of business, but the frameworks that guide business principles overlap, complement, and enhance design principles.
    This course seeks to educate students to understand business as a critical design factor- a defining constraint or liberating perspective along the same lines that other design principles are taught.
    The guiding principle is that design and business are inextricably linked: Design work is intrinsically linked to business and will always be at the service of business, fulfilling the need for an enterprise (profit or non-profit) whose business model is critical to its survival. Design will find new channels, new outlets, through a more complete understanding of business needs and how businesses see opportunity. Design can and should be considered as critical strategic input for business.
    The objective of Business Principles: Design and Entrepreneurship is for students to understand basic business vocabulary, to explore how design vocabulary and design processes overlap, complement and enhance business vocabulary, and to understand how design thinking skills can be used to identify and execute business opportunities.
    Major elective; ID majors only
  5. A Collaborative Study Project (CSP) allows two students to work collaboratively to complete a faculty supervised project of independent study.
    Usually, a CSP is supervised by two faculty members, but with approval it may be supervised by one faculty member. Its purpose is to meet individual student needs by providing an alternative to regularly offered courses, though it is not a substitute for a course if that course is regularly offered.
  6. This course is a continuation of Design Principles (ID-2464) with an emphasis on problem solving and design process and skills.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  7. The purpose of this course is to expose students to SolidWorks, a widely used solid modeling software program. Students will learn how to translate their hand-sketches into three-dimensional CAD models. Lectures and assignments will focus on the development of form as it applies to plastic part design and assembly. Physical models will be realized through ABS rapid prototyping allowing students to experience true plastic part design.
    Students should anticipate additional costs for supplies and materials.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.

  8. Graduate Communication Introduction is a studio course about writing and speaking as design tools. We think about writing and speaking in two ways. First as a communication tool and second as a design tool.
    On the communication side, we address the many ways that writing and speaking surrounds a designed object (as a proposal, as sales copy, as instructions to users, as specs for manufacture, as criticism, etc.). We think about the audiences for those various kinds of communication and how to think about what they want and need. We look at examples of great design communication and we develop and practice our own skills for succinctly explaining our ideas.
    On the design tool side, we think about the many ways that writing can help clarify and quickly test out ideas. We think about writing as a form of rapid prototyping alongside sketching, model making, etc. We talk about what writing is good at, when other methods might be more useful, and when to combine methods. We explore techniques such as design fiction, scenario planning, and other narrative methodologies that are used in industrial design and related fields.
    Graduate major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  9. This required studio continues the explorations you began in Graduate Studio One. Again, you are challenged through a series of projects to purposefully locate your personal position within contemporary industrial design practice. The projects will introduce you to a variety of issues, application methodologies and audiences associated with the "industrial design" process that will equip you with a critical understanding of the field that can direct a practical means of applying your ideas. At the end of the semester, your deliverable is an exhibition piece resulting from a final self-directed project. This concluding project is a personal, insightful and original synthesis of your semester's activities and clearly communicates your maturity in problem solving design approaches. Graduate Studio Two is offered as part of the Graduate Industrial Design core curriculum in conjunction the required Graduate Shop Orientation and Graduate Communications courses.
    Graduate major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  10. Graduate Thesis Communications II is a studio course run in parallel with our sibling studio course which focuses on completing your thesis. Together, we will spend the spring semester finishing the thesis and thesis book that you proposed at the end of Graduate Thesis Communications I. We continue to think about writing as a design tool and as a communication tool. For this course, we put more emphasis on the communication aspect. Together, we will continue to refine and strengthen the manner by which you explain your thesis to yourself and others. We will think about audience, voice, structure, and form. We will explore different ways of communicating the same idea in different contexts and mediums (visual, oral, written). We will examine how to share our work and with whom. At the end of the course, you will have a complete thesis.
    Major requirement, ID graduate students only Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  11. This course concludes the Graduate Thesis through iterative prototyping, application and verification that positions and delivers a human-centered, discpline-engaging proposal that will be communicated through an exhibition format, product, product prototype and a final Graduate Thesis document.
    Graduate major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  12. History is a powerful tool; a basic understanding of the history of design and familiarity with important design movements and designers is essential for thorough design work. By examining the work of other designers, we are better able to identify our own interests and concerns, and avoid repeating mistakes that have been navigated in the past. This lecture-based class will present the history of Industrial Design in a way that links it to today's studio work, and offers connection points to link past innovation and design activity with future design success. The lectures present a chronological overview of the profession of Industrial Design and its antecedents. Topics discussed will include major design movements, significant designers, manufacturers, and design-related companies, innovations in technology and material use, the development of sales, marketing, and user-focused designing, and the history of design process. Coursework includes extensive reading, in-class presentations based on independent research, projects, and writing.
    Major requirement; ID majors
    Registration of Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
    Liberal Arts elective credit for non-majors pending seat availability.
  13. This course will acclimate new graduate students to the shop environment of the Industrial Design Department. The Metal, Wood and Model Shops are invaluable resources, clarifying pragmatic aspects of the design process from general feasibility of manufacturing to the challenges of translating concepts into tangible objects. This course covers excerpted information from both undergraduate courses Wood I and Metals I and emphasizes safety in the utilization of shop facilities.
    Graduate major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  14. The Independent Study Project (ISP) allows students to supplement the established curriculum by completing a faculty supervised project for credit in a specific area of interest. Its purpose is to meet individual student needs by providing an alternative to regularly offered courses.
    Permission of Academic Advisor and Department Head is required in advance of posted Registrar's deadline.
    GPA of 3.0 or higher is required.
    Register by completing the Independent Study Application available on the Registrar's website.
  15. This course introduces the students to methods, materials, and manufacturing processes that translate design activity into finished goods. A significant portion of downstream design activity is devoted to manufacturing issues - the techniques by which materials are selected, shaped, and then assembled. Students will be evaluated based upon success of weekly field study research assignments and a final exam.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  16. This course gives the student a hands-on opportunity to develop design skills through the interaction with industrial materials that have strictly defined properties. Experimenting with these materials and the processes by which they are manipulated and formed promotes innovative thinking, problem solving and idea development. Students will achieve a more precise, professional and sensitive approach to design while broadening their technical skill base.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  17. The objective of this course is to develop a more precise, professional and sensitive approach to design while broadening the student's technical base. Precision machine tools such as metal lathes, millers and grinders will be introduced. Logical design and set-up approaches will be discussed. Outside design work will be required with emphasis on engineering drawing and sequence of operations. There will be a strong emphasis on experimenting with the material in order to promote innovative thinking and problem solving.
    Major elective; ID majors only
  18. The professional internship provides valuable exposure to a professional setting, enabling students to better establish a career path and define practical aspirations. Internship proposals are carefully vetted to determine legitimacy and must meet the contact hour requirements listed in the RISD Course Announcement.
    Permission of Academic Advisor and Department Head is required.
  19. In this class we practice a variety of digital and freehand methods of design exploration and visual communication used by designers. These sketching and rendering skills are ideal for anyone who has to understand and resolve form while communicating ideas within interdisciplinary environments. We will focus on the redesign of a few objects, starting with some sketching from the ideation phase through to a final solution that describes the aesthetic and emotive intentions, as well as demonstrates knowledge of functional or unique manufacturing requirements. The class is built on the belief that strong two-dimensional skills remain the essential tool for product designers.
    Students attending the first module will be required to participate in the final critique on the final day of the semester.
    Open to juniors and above.
  20. In this hands-on course, students will learn the basics of Processing, an open-source coding language that combines computer programming with form, motion and interaction. Students will learn the fundamentals of Processing to create interactive graphics and visualize data in a collaborative workshop setting. By the end of the four-week module, students will have learned to design, implement, and trouble-shoot their code, providing a solid foundation that will allow them to continue their learning after the class ends.
    Students will be required to participate in the "laptop farm" group exhibition on the final day of the semester.
    Open to juniors and above.
  21. This class will cover basic camera optics and lighting techniques necessary to generate high quality digital images for either print or digital portfolio applications. The focus of the class is to master manual controls on the digital camera such as film and shutter speed settings in conjunction with aperture openings to obtain whatever the desired effect might be to best represent two and three-dimensional objects. Manipulation of natural and artificial lighting is the other main focus of the class. Students will learn the use of fill and bounce cards with sun, tungsten and strobe light sources. The emphasis will be on the strobe lighting studio where through a series of assignments students will learn direct, diffused reflected lighting techniques.
    Students will be required to participate in the final critique during the final week of the semester.
    Open to juniors and above.
  22. This workshop teaches the basics of Rhino and introduces students to 3D modeling through an "exploratory process." Recognizing that experts devise many approaches to surface modeling Rhino Workshop: Exploratory Learning for 3D modeling uses four discrete projects each with a specific set of commands and features that will be explored as students fulfill the project's design brief and discover their own operational style. This approach flips the classroom experience - students use tutorials as necessary to identify techniques for basic surface modeling.

    By the completion of the workshop, students will be able to use Rhino as a design tool in their own design process - using the software to simulate projects in 3 dimensions or exporting 3D files to 2D for presentation purposes.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $100.00
    Open to sophomores and above.
    Open to non-majors by permission of Instructor.
  23. Philosophically, the ID Department believes that students become better designers when they have an intimate knowledge of a range of natural and synthetic materials. In this course, students will learn about the properties of natural wood and engineered wood-based materials, investigate the related technical processes, and evaluate how this information is both connected to and influenced by the design process. Students will work with materials directly and master skills needed to manipulate these materials. They will develop projects that allow them to engage in the design and development process, promote creativity, problem solving, and the correct use of materials. Facility procedures, safety, and care and use of tools and equipment will be stressed.
    Major requirement; ID majors only
    Registration by Industrial Design Department, course not available via web registration.
  24. This course will deal with advanced woodworking processes, including milling and machinery use, laminate and steam bending, plywood and veneer. Techniques in using natural and synthetic materials connected with furniture will be covered.
    Major elective; ID majors only