Intentional Interactions is a three-weeks teaching module for Master's students coming from all Design disciplines and with no prior knowledge of Interaction Design. It was premiered with Global Innovation Design joint course between Imperial College London and the Royal College or Art
Why we created Intentional Interactions

The value of the things we design is slowly shifting from the physical objects to the experiences they provide. Accordingly, digital interactions are increasingly at the core of design student projects.Yet, where physical prototyping skills could be acquired through trying, the barrier of entry to digital prototyping tools (e.g. coding) is a growing source of frustration for students who often feel limited both in their thinking and in what they can deliver
What we wanted to achieve

Give a general understanding of the discipline
Because Interaction Design is quite young, vast and because it is part of many other types of Design, it is often misunderstood (in French for instance, it is often translated into Digital Design, which maybe tells more about France than about the discipline - but that's another subject)

Provide a starting point
From outside, the world of coding looks like a jungle and most students do not know where to start

Encourage practise
Coding requires practice and repetition. And practise. And repetition

Expand students' horizons
Our multi-disciplinary approach to Design gives us strong beliefs in thinking through making and the ultimate goal of this module is to stimulate students in their thinking and allow them to generate new type of ideas
Concept Highlights

We thought tangible interactions would be more fun to start with than building an app, especially for students who are used to designing physical things

This is why we decided to design a custom £10 kit robot that each student is asked to assemble on the first day of the module: With it, we teach them how to build simple behaviours and interactions through a very hands-on series of workshops using our own physical/digital interface based on Unity + Arduino
As the course progresses they personalise and re-purpose their robot. Sometimes they also completely hack (i.e destroy) it with  - nonetheless - interesting results

On the last day we make the students disassemble, clean and reassemble the 30 robots. Once done they have to design and build, all together, an installation (until late in the night): A non-metaphorical introduction to the complexity of scaling up a wonky concept with a tight deadline
Intentional Interactions
Arthur Carabott, User Experience Engineer at Output Inc.
Guillaume Couche, Design Director at Wolf in Motion
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