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Degree Project in Advanced Product Design, 30 Credits

Swedish name: Examensprojekt i avancerad produktdesign

This syllabus is valid: 2019-12-30 and until further notice

Course code: 5ID201

Credit points: 30

Education level: Second cycle

Main Field of Study and progress level: Industrial Design: Second cycle, contains degree project for Master of Arts/Master of Science (120 credits)

Grading scale: Pass course only, G Pass, U Fail

Responsible department: Umeå Institute of Design (UID)

Revised by: Faculty Board of Science and Technology, 2019-10-29


The course objective is for students to demonstrate the knowledge and skills needed to work professionally as a product designer and consists of the following phases:

1. Research (6 credits)
The first thesis phase includes gathering of facts where the focus is on exploring the problem area, define relevant design problems and to plan the further design work.

2. Independent design work (19.5 credits)
The second thesis phase is performed as a design process. The focus of the course is to demonstrate the ability to communicate and collaborate in a professional manner with experts in the same or other fields, with project partners and prospective users of the intended product. As part of the examination, the student should in a professional manner account for the design process, argue for relevant facts, social context and a user focus to justify the methods, techniques and tools used to perform, explain and visualize the process and the result.

3. Presentation (4.5 credits)
The thesis presented in writing as a report, orally and visually as a presentation, as well as in exhibition form.

Expected learning outcomes

After completing the course, the student shall be able to:

Knowledge and understanding
  • Identify and define a relevant design problem of high complexity within the field of advanced product design, and argue for its relevance in relation to both professional field and social context with a clear user-focused approach.
  • Demonstrate project management skills in a professional way by planning a time schedule with project related activities including time estimation of these activities.
  • Communicate expertly with both experts and laymen within the design area, as well as with professionals in other fields during different phases of the project.
  • Show maturity in the selection, execution, analysis and documentation of the methods used in during research and in user and field studies.
Competence and skills
  • Independently establish and execute a design project aimed at creating a product or solution for the defined design problem.
  • Demonstrate the ability to implement and develop ideas by choosing appropriate means for the creative exploration, visualization and creation, in relation to the projects prerequisites.
  • Show maturity in choice of methods for evaluating and validating initial design concepts and the final design proposal.
  • Visualize and show understanding of technology, function and use of the final design proposal as well as to illustrate it in the context and perspective of the user.
Judgement and approach
  • Independently visualize the final result of the design project in the form of advanced visualizations and presentation material in order to communicate and facilitate a dialogue about the intended design concepts implications seen from an artistic, societal and ethical perspective
  • Orally and in a written thesis in English, clearly describe, analyse and reflect on their design process and the final outcome in relation both to the specific project and the education and future design professions context.


Required Knowledge

A Bachelor's degree or equivalent first-cycle qualification comprising of at least 180 ECTS or a corresponding qualification from an internationally recognized university. Specific entry requirements are: 60 ECTS credits in the field of Design. Student must have passed all previous courses on the Master`s Programme in Advanced Product Design at Umeå Institute of Design. Proficiency in English equivalent to Swedish upper secondary course English B/6.

Form of instruction

An important part of the learning during the course consists of the students own time planning and work during a 20 week period. Thus, the course is to a large extent student driven, with support in the form of tutoring by the project tutor(s) and supervision by the course responsible.

Examination modes

Examination is carried out in the form of presentations – oral, visual and written – at specific gateways during the course and as a final presentation at the end of the course.
In order to be approved all three phases have to be completed. After completing the course, one of the grades Fail (U) or Pass (G) is awarded the student. Students receive a grade of either Pass (G) or Fail (U) for each phase, and for the final examination. In order to obtain credit for the course, the student must have produced an approved project brief with problem statement and time plan, made approved presentations at specified gateways in each phase, and made a final oral and visual presentation of the project including visual and physical exhibition material. A written report, documenting the work process and the final result, has to be handed in to the Programme Director for approval.
For students who have not obtained the grade Pass, other examination sessions will be arranged. A student who for two consecutive examinations for the same course or sub-course has not been passed, has the right to have another examiner appointed, if there are no special reasons against this (Higher Education Ordinance chapter 6, 22 §). The request for a new examiner shall be made in writing to the Head of Department at Umeå Institute of Design.

Equivalency credits cannot be given to this course since it is a concluding course and a summary of the knowledge the students has assimilated during the studies at Umeå Institute of Design.


Valid from: 2019 week 44

Reference literature

Reference literature is not mandatory.

Harari Yuval Noah
Homo Deus : a brief history of tomorrow / Yuval Noah Harari
London : Vintage : 2017 : 513 s. :
ISBN: 978-1-78470-393-6
Search Album, the University Library catalogue

Sapiens : a brief history of mankind
Harari Yuval Noah, Purcell John, Watzman Haim
London : Vintage Books : [2015] : x, 498 p. :
ISBN: 978-0-09-959008-8
Search Album, the University Library catalogue