Measuring Design Cognition
Important Dates
May 25 Submissions due
June 8 Notification of acceptance
1 July 9:00am-12:30pm Workshop

Workshop Aim:

Design cognition is a complex, multi-faceted phenomenon, and has received considerable attention in the design literature. A range of approaches are now used to measure and interpret the underlying cognitive processes, including protocol analysis, linkography, and a variety of output-based metrics such as novelty, quality, surprise, and variety. Recent advances have included controlled behavioural studies reflective of established methods in cognitive psychology, and the use of physiological and neurological techniques such as electroencephalography (EEG) to measure brain activity during creative tasks.

Comprehensively and rigorously measuring design cognition remains a demanding task in practice. The goal of this workshop is to explore current viewpoints and approaches in this area, and identify the challenges central to advancing the field. Questions to be considered include:

  • What approaches and metrics are currently used to measure design cognition, and what are their strengths and weaknesses?
  • Can subjective aspects of design cognition (e.g. creativity) be measured reliably, and can we/should we compare results across different studies?
  • How can we deal with the issue of sample size and its effects in design cognition research?
  • How can we efficiently and reliably process and interpret qualitative data on design cognition, particularly in large samples?
  • How can we deal with the issue of ecological validity of tasks and conditions in controlled experiments on design cognition?
    • How can we interpret data on design cognition to revise/extend/develop scientific models and theories of design?
Workshop Chairs
Laura Hay, University of Strathclyde
Alex Duffy, University of Strathclyde
Philip Cash, Technical University of Denmark
Program Committee
  • Jonathan Cagan, Carnegie Mellon University
    Carlos Cardoso, TU Delft
    Seda McKilligan, Iowa State University
    Yukari Nagai, Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology
    Maria Adriana Neroni, University of Cambridge
Workshop Notes

Workshop Notes (link)

Please email submissions to the workshop chairs.

Submission information:
Participants do not need to submit anything to attend the workshop. 

Short presentations addressing any of the above questions/topics are invited. Those wishing to present should submit a position paper of no more than 4 pages detailing the key ideas to be covered in their presentation. Papers should include an abstract (maximum 200 words). Papers must be submitted to the workshop chairs and will be reviewed for relevance by the program committee. All papers will be made publicly available prior to the workshop.

Note that those wishing to participate in discussions without presenting do not need to make a formal submission.

Workshop format:

This interactive workshop will be structured in three parts. In the first part, participants will be invited to share their views, research and activities relevant to the topic. In the second part of the workshop, participants will be divided into two-three groups to work on some key themes identified in advance based on submissions. In the third part of the workshop, participants will share and cluster insights and ideas from the sub-group discussions and attempt to construct a shared roadmap for future research and action.

The workshop will open with an overview of the goals and topics to be explored, followed by presentations and brief questions. After a break, participants will split into groups to discuss the questions/topics outlined above (and any other relevant issues), before reporting back on proposed key challenges to be addressed by future research on design cognition measurement..

  1. Introduction – 10 minutes
  2. Presentations – 1 hour
  3. Break – 10 mins
  4. Group discussion focused on workshop questions/topics –1.25 hours
  5. Feedback on key challenges identified by groups – 30 minutes.
  6. Close – 5 min

All attendees at the workshop need to register either as an addition to the DCC'18 conference registration at a cost of €30, or if not registered for the conference at a cost of €60. Please go the DCC'18 Registration page to add this workshop to your registration.