MIT OpenCourseWare
  • OCW home
  • Course List
  • about OCW
  • Help
  • Feedback
  • Support MIT OCW

4.273 Introduction to Design Inquiry, Fall 2001

Silent game image.
Making objects facilitates the development of ideas - A design from the Silent Game. (Image courtesy of course faculty.)

Highlights of this Course

As an exploration into design, this class offers the opinions of many, including outside faculty, and the participating students. It also offers a comprehensive bibliography on the subject, and a class log, with notes from each week's sessions.

Course Description

Introduction to Design Inquiry explores the nature and exercise of design intelligence. It aims to open avenues for further research and, along them, to open vistas on the teaching of design and on more mindful professional design practices.

We see design as processes located in individuals and groups, shaped by the formation and experience of each individual and by the characteristics of the groups that play a role in the design process. People construct the worlds they inhabit out of what they know and have experienced. So also does the designer, but the designer’s worlds must be possible for others to inhabit and, therefore, to construct. Indeed the success of a design depends in large part on the degree to which these constructive processes yield similar results.


Prof. William Porter
Prof. Edith Ackermann

Course Meeting Times

Two sessions / week
2 hours / session




Send feedback about OCW or this course.