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Brunel University launches MSc in Human Centred Design

Set to commence in September, 2007, the programme will equip graduates with the practical knowledge and transferable skills required to optimise the fit between humans and systems, and to put them at the forefront of human-centred design research and application.

Otherwise known as human factors or ergonomics, human-centred design is becoming increasingly important where maintaining health and safety, efficiency and satisfaction, both at home and at work, depends on designers and engineers knowing how to design systems and equipment around the capabilities and limitations of users.

According to Harvard Business School, 70 per cent to 80 per cent of new product development failures are not through lack of technology, but rather the lack of understanding of the users needs during the design process.

Design and Engineering students selecting this course will discover the methods and tools required for improving human-centred design to overcome this problem.

The programme, which can be studied full-time over one year, or part-time over two or three years, will include the following modules:
• Physical human factors in Design
• Virtual Modelling in Design
• Design Management and Marketing
• Research Methodology and Innovation
• Cognitive Ergonomics in Design
• Ergonomics Tools in the Design Process
• Design of Perception Enhancement Systems
• Inclusive Design.

Speaking about the MSc, Programme Director, Dr. Mark Young says: “We too commonly see products that are tipped to be the next must-have gadget fail miserably when they come to market.

“The reason for this is that all too often products are designed with technology in front of the mind, rather than the user. Brunel's MSc aims to tackle this problem by re-focusing the design process so that it thinks about the user first, and the technology second.“

For more information about the course and how potential students can secure a place in September 2007, please contact Dr Mark Young on 01895 266 527 or email: or the marketing and recruitment office at the School of Engineering and Design on 01895 265 814, or email: