Differences between the discerning and opportunistic mind-sets in design learning

Basyarah Hamat*, Boris Eisenbart, Jan Schoormans, Petra Badke-Schaub

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Design learning can be improved by understanding the differences between individual characteristics of students and its connection with their learning processes and outcomes. This paper focusses on the differences between discerning and opportunistic mind-sets. 91 students from industrial, product or automotive design courses participated in a quasi-experiment where they were required to generate solutions for a design problem, answer a Q&A survey and fill in a questionnaire. The obtained data were analysed using qualitative and quantitative metrics. We found evidence of individual characteristics, processes and outcomes that differentiate the discerning and opportunistic mind-sets. Based on these findings the paper proposes and discusses potential implications for design education.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 21st International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED17)
Subtitle of host publicationDesign Education
EditorsA. Maier, S. Škec, H. Kim, M. Kokkolaras, J. Oehmen, G. Fadel, F. Salustri, M. van der Loos
PublisherThe Design Society
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-904670-97-1
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventICED17: 21st International Conference on Engineering Design - Vancouver, Canada
Duration: 21 Aug 201725 Aug 2017

Publication series

NumberDS 87-9
ISSN (Electronic)2220-4342




  • Design education
  • Design learning
  • Design learning mind-sets
  • Early design phases


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