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Intro to the Design of Everyday Things

via Udacity


Everyone designs. Design occurs anytime you deliberately change an environment to make things better. When you decide what seat to take in an auditorium you’re designing your experience. When you rearrange the furniture in a room or draft an email, you’re designing.

This course provides a summary of key concepts from the first two chapters of The Design of Everyday Things (Revised and Expanded Edition, November 2013) by Don Norman. It’s intended to be enjoyable and informative for anyone curious about design: everyday people, technical people, designers, and non-designers alike.

Why Take This Course?

This course will provide you with the knowledge needed to start recognizing the role of design in today’s world, and to start making better design decisions in your own life. In addition to learning basic design concepts such as affordances and signifiers, you will also gain practice in observing and applying design principles.


Lesson 1: Affordances and Signifiers (4 hours)

Lesson 2: Conceptual Models and the System Image (4 hours)

Lesson 3: Gulfs of Evaluation and Execution (1 hour)

Final Project: Design the User Interface (UI) for a Timebank (7 hours)

*The times include watching instructional videos, completing the course exercises, and finishing projects. In total, this course should take an average of 16 hours.

Taught by

Don Norman and Kristian Simsarian

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3.9 rating, based on 11 reviews

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  • Samar Hammad completed this course, spending 5 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be medium.

    It is simple and understandable for beginners . I liked how things are introduced but it needed more examples to be shown
  • Veronica Seniquel

    Veronica Seniquel completed this course.

    Sumamente recomendable, entretenido, práctico y útil.
  • Profile image for YOGITHA G

    YOGITHA G completed this course, spending 1 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be easy.

    The course was quite interesting and easy to correlate to day to day situations. I thoroughly enjoyed watching the sessions. However, the duration of videos could have been little more elaborate and only after quoting many examples or situations, the questions should have been posed to the students who are doing the course
  • Arthur completed this course, spending 2 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be easy.

    The organization of this course isn't done very well, yet, the topics of the course are TOO special that I can't find another course to replace it. By the way, some topics might seem ordinary, but bringing it out and overlook it isn't simple. And don't forget I gave this course 5 stars.
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