Aapo’s selected works

Please note that only a small fraction of Aapo's projects can be shown here in public.

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User Centric Design Training

User Centric Design Training

What I faced

  • Aalto University was planning a course on user centric design methods. They had held the course a year earlier, but were disappointed in the lecturer. The clarity and content of the lectures left much to be desired.
  • The course was planned to be four days long. They asked me to teach the course. I agreed.

What I did

  • User-centric design methods are typically used in only certain phases of the product development cycle. I held the course as a mini product development project.
  • It makes no sense to train people in design methods without actually trying the methods. I decided we must have both lectures and training for each method.
  • We needed real users of the products and the products theselves. I used the course participants as users. The whole group was divided into subgroups of three people. These groups had a task of developing a product.
  • The groups brought the product to be used/tested/evaluated. One member of the group was the ‘professional user’, and the others researched his need and usage habits.
  • Later, a usability test and other review methods were practised. In these practises the test participants were borrowed from the other groups.
  • This way the course got real products, real users and training on real methods.

What came of it

  • The course got very good reviews (PDF) from the participants.
  • The same course was been held twice a year in Aalto University for about 10 years.

Current status

  • After a significant reorganization at Aalto, these longer courses no longer fit well in their plans and the courses came to an end..
  • I still lecture about usability, user-centric design methods and user interface design about 5 times a year in various companies.