Constructing design activity in words: Exploring linguistic methods to analyse the design process

Senthil Chandrasegaran*, Almila Akdag Salah, Peter Lloyd

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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Abstract

Analysing transcripts of design activity typically involve either close reading or manual coding of data, which limits the amount of data that can be analysed. In contrast, we explore a machine-learning based linguistic analysis tool called Empath to identify patterns of reasoning in design talk. The data we use derives from the Design Thinking Research Symposium (DTRS) shared-data workshops which we analyse to look at two contrasting aspects of design talk: the expression of tentativeness, characterising designers' generative thinking; and the articulation of explanations, characterising their deductive or analytical thinking. We show, at the level of speech turns, how tentativeness and explanation relate to, and overlap, each other. Finally, we discuss the limitations of this ‘linguistic analysis at scale’ approach.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101182
Number of pages28
JournalDesign Studies
Volume86
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Keywords

  • collaborative design
  • design activity
  • design thinking
  • research methods
  • text analysis

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