• Overview

    • Goal: Discovering a Need that an Invention Can Fill

      • A designer begins their research by trying to figure out what is NOT already available. Through processes like market research, designers gather information in order to understand a market and inform their design process. Though there are better and worse solutions, typically a designer isn’t looking for a universal truth or connection as their research is contextualized by their market.
  • CCSS Alignment (Research) RI 8.1-8.4, 8.8;  RST 8.2-8.6, 8.8-8.9; W 8.1 & 8.10


Mind Map Worksheet




Excellent Design Websites

Mind Maps


  • Scale Visualizations; Storyboards; SWOT Analysis;  Spirals Design Cycles; Diamond Mind Maps


Iterative Design Processes; Habits of Thinking; Scamper; Creative Problem Solving; Scenario Analysis; Constructive Exploration; Metaphorical Thinking; 8W of Information Inquiry; Dramatism Model; Osborn’s Creative Thinking ; Negative Brainstorming; Lateral Thinking Models

Note Taking Toolss

Cluster Notes; Cornell Notes; Inference Notes; Gradient Or Scaling Visualizations; Storyboards; Swot Analysis; Rapid Prototyping Spirals; Procedural Visualizations; Interactive Notes; Sensory Notes; Think In Threes Notes

Common Sources

Screen Plays; Diagnostic Flow charts; Play; Infographs; How-to-Videos ; Blogs; Experimental Data; Design Sketches; Observation; Games; Interviews and Surveys; Speeches

Objectives - Student will:

1. Define a question about a need/creative idea

2. Brainstorm word associated to topic

3. Allow seemingly off the wall ideas to surface

4. Avoid repetitive/common ideas

5. Collect a variety of media types/perspectives

6. Verify feasible solutions

7. Group common themes/needs

8. Tag research by influences/styles/materials

9. Web & evaluate connections between clusters

10. Apply design models to describe patterns

11. Prioritize info focusing on one need

12. Define what the design is not

13. Sketch/mock-up out ideas found

14. Originality/ feasibility of your solution

15. Define impacts of design in multiple contexts

16. Explore opposite positions to find an info gap