Mr. Rogers' IB Design Technology Objectives
Syllabus 1st Quarter 2nd Quarter 3rd Quarter 4th Quarter
Design Project Materials Product Development Product Design

Topic 5 Product Design

IB Design Technology Standards: Items directly related to the standards are shown in blue

Unit Plan Practice Test Study Guide


Essential Question: How does a designer make products the right size?


  1. Define ergonomics, anthropometrics and percentile range.

  2. State that ergonomics is multidisciplinary, encompassing anthropometrics, psychological factors and physiological factors.

  3. Describe a design context where the 5th–95th percentile range has been used. - clothing, shoes

The number of sizes that a store has to provide to attract customers is a significant factor in inventory costs. Ideally, stores would like to have one-size-fits-all. Clothing above the 95th would rarely sell, yet drive up inventory costs. However, this does create a specialized market for a limited number of big and tall stores designed to attract larger customers. Adult customers needing sizes below the 5th percentile could modify existing sizes (for example shorten pants and take in waistlines) or buy children's sized clothing.

  1. Describe a design context where the 50th percentile has been used. - light switches, kitchen cabinets

  2. Explain the limitations of using the 50th percentile as a means of designing for the “average” person.

  3. Identify specific design contexts where the designer would use percentile ranges for particular user groups.

  4. Outline the significance of psychological factors (smell, light, sound, taste, texture and temperature) to ergonomics.

  5. Outline physiological factors that affect ergonomics.

  • fatigue

  • comfort

  1. Discuss the influence of perception when collecting data relating to psychological factors.

  • Quantitative data is useful for psychological factors

  • A consistent parameter can be perceived quite differently by different people--for example room temperature


Assessment -- Materials Vocabulary

Specifications: Write definitions for the terms in objectives 1 and 2

Deliverable: Place the completed Word file in the IB Design Technology folder of your student drive.

Work Group: individuals.

Essential Question: Is it acceptable to deliberately plan for a product to become obsolete in a specified period of time?
The designer and society
  1. Discuss moral and social responsibilities of designers in relation to green design issues.

  •  waste

  • pollution

  • resources

  • market forces--Ultimately the market dictates what can be designed because if a product cannot be sold at a profit it will cease to exist.

  • wealth creation--the ultimate purpose of design is to 1) improve or 2) maintain the quality of human existence. Unfortunately these goals can be contradictory. For example, improving the lives of current inhabitants by burning fossil fuels may threaten future inhabitants with things like coastal flooding due to global warming.

  1. Define:

  • planned obsolescence

  • fashion.

  1. Outline how planned obsolescence influences the design specification of a product.

  • materials and construction

  • durability and ease of maintenance.

  1. Compare the influence of fashion and planned obsolescence on the product cycle.

  2. Evaluate the influence of fashion and planned obsolescence on the quality and value of a product.

  3. Explain how aesthetic considerations affect the design of products.

  • shape and form

  • texture and color.

  1. Discuss the conflict that a designer faces when attempting to balance form with function in the design of products.



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