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Above: Student modeling a cylinder in foam by cutting off periphery and sanding to inscribed circle afterwards.

Above: Demonstrating foam modeling techniques to my students in lab setting. By utilizing a central table, students can view demonstrated techniques at close-hand and are free to ask questions.

Course Summary:

IAT 336 is a third-year introductory course focusing on industrial design and design materials. Students gain a working understanding of design materials through hands-on exercises.


Course Objectives:

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to demonstrate an understanding of material choices in designing interactive objects and environments. The range of available materials and manufacturing processes is vast, but all choices must respond to the requirements posed by the particular artifact being designed. Upon completion, students will be able to disseminate the criteria that affect material choices in design such as:


1. Physical properties of materials

2. The design process

3. Human factors/interaction

4. Social aspects (material connotation)

5. Natural forces that act on materials

6. Manipulation and affordances of materials

7. Manufacturing/fabrication methods including rapid technology

8. Sustainability and ethics


Instructional Approach:

This is a third-year upper division course consisting of a 2 hour lecture, followed by 2 hours of supervised lab. Lectures are related to the project/lab material. In addition to weekly exercises, the students complete 2-3 group projects, including a final group project surrounding the development of a functional product/artifact. The assignments and projects scaffold in skill building and complement each other.



Exploration sketching, modelmaking (low and high-fidelity), exploded assemblies, moodboards, marker rendering, rapid prototyping, appearance models.




IAT 336: Materials in Design  (Intro to Product Design)



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