Mr. Rogers' IB Design Technology Objectives
Syllabus 1st Quarter 2nd Quarter 3rd Quarter 4th Quarter
Evaluation Electronic product design    

Topic 7: Evaluation

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?

Evaluation and designing

Relevance: Without proper evaluation and customer feedback, you can have a wonderful product or invention idea that fails.
  1. Define

  • literature search

  • user trial

  • user research

  • expert appraisal

  1. Outline the general criteria used to evaluate products.

  • performance --does the product meet customer needs

  • ?
  • reliability -- does the product meet the customer's expectations for useful life and fredome from repairs?

  • ease of use--user friendliness

  • safety

  • aesthetics

  • materials -- are materials durable, inexpensive, readily available

  • construction

  • cost -- is the customer willing to pay the price?

  1. Explain how the criteria used to evaluate products will vary depending on the purpose of the evaluation. For example, crash-testing cars is done in relation to safety only.

  2. Apply the general criteria to evaluate products. Explain the use of qualitative and/or quantitative tests, models and experiments used to evaluate ideas at the design development stage (developing chosen solution) of the design cycle.

  • scale models to evaluate shape, form and proportion

  • materials tests

  • construction technique tests

  • focus groups--asthetics and user friendliness

  1. Describe one advantage and one disadvantage of literature search for data collection.

  • disadvantage--an overwhelming amount of data can become too time consuming to evaluate

  • advantage--

  1. Evaluate the importance of ICT in aiding literature searching.

  • access to information

  • speed

  • costs,

  • storage

  • security.

  1. Describe one advantage and one disadvantage of a user trial to collect data.

  • advantage: “user” is a non-specialist, which makes trials easier and cost-effective.

  • disadvantage: users may carry out tasks in different ways from those expected and be inexperienced.

  1. Describe one advantage and one disadvantage of user research to collect data.

  • advantage: data is relatively easy and cheap to obtain

  • disadvantage: data is largely qualitative.

  1. Compare user research with user trial.

  • user research--data collected by obtaining users’ responses to questions.

  • user trial--data collected by observing users’ behavior.

  1. Describe one advantage and one disadvantage of using expert appraisal to collect data. For example, expert knowledge and advice are gained (compared to a user trial), but the expert may be biased. It may also be difficult to locate an expert. Data is usually qualitative.

Assessment -- Evaluation Vocabulary

IB Standard:various

Specifications: Create the above table in Excel and input the missing information using the internet and the glossary in the IB Design Tech syllabus.

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

Work Group: individuals.


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

Evaluation and manufacturing

  1. Define

  • cost-effectiveness.

  • quality control

  • quality assurance.

  • performance test.

  • value for money.

  1. Identify the nature of evaluation at different stages of the product cycle.

  • different types of market research, for example, evaluating competitive products,

  • evaluating the success of a new product

  • evaluating for redesign.

  1. Explain the importance of cost effectiveness to manufacturers. In order to maximize profit, manufacturers require the most cost-effective production system. This is often the major aim of the brief for designers.

  2. Compare quality control with quality assurance for manufactured products.

  3. Describe one advantage and one disadvantage of using a field trial to collect data.

  • disadvantage: usually quite extensive exercises, so can be expensive

  • advantage: tested in marketplace

  • advantage:  data different from lab-based evaluations.

  1. Compare price with value when assessing a product for value for money.

  • price is too high: not enough potential purchasers who can afford it or think the product is value for money.

  • price is too low: consumers may think the product is too cheap to have much value.

  • maximum price: generally established by demand

  • minimum price: determined by costs of production

  • price may be set in relation to its competitors

  • price may be set in accordance with the perceived value of the product.

  1. Explain how consumers apply criteria to evaluate a product for value for money, referring to before purchase, purchase, initial use and long-term use. Before purchase: advertising, manufacturer’s specification, list price, product image, and evaluation by experts and consumer groups. Purchase: aesthetics, performance, build quality and purchase price. Initial use: actual performance, safety and ease of use. Long-term use: reliability, ease of maintenance, durability and running costs.

  2. Discuss how the criteria in 7.3.3 are assigned different weightings depending on the design context. Value judgments play a part in product analysis, and they vary according to the individual, the time (era) and the circumstances. Consumers often value utility, security, availability, rarity and aesthetics, while designers may consider function, reliability and ease of maintenance more important.

  3. Explain the relevance of quality assurance to consumers.

  • consumers do not have to carry out their own research

  • they have a means of redress if a product fails to match expected standards, for example, via a guarantee.

  1. Discuss the role of consumer associations for product evaluation.

  • independent evaluation manufacturers’ claims

  • publish data for consumers

  • compare similar products within a target market

  • recommend the best value-for-money products.

  1. Explain the contribution of the media and education to product evaluation. 

  • consumer and lifestyle programs

  • the weekend sections of newspapers

  • consumer journals, and their focus on new products

  • curriculum development and design education in schools


Summative Assessment: Test Objectives 1-22


Note: Items highlighted in this color are directly related to the 2009 IB Syllabus which is the set of standards for the class. In many cases the wording has been altered, but every attempt has been made to preserve the meaning. These objective, however, should not be considered a substitute for the actual syllabus.
















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