MMP317 Design Strategies and Concepts

1 semester
2024 Vår
Emnenavn på engelsk: 
Design Strategies and Concepts
2024 Vår
Krav til forkunnskapar


This course has limited capacity and a pre-booked Erasmus quote. The course admission will be continuous.

Om emnet

According to Wanda Grimsgaard (professor at University of South-Eastern Norway) «The word design gives positive connotations. It signifies aesthetic, good form, good function and identity. That is why many declare ownership to it and use it in different contexts. The term “design” covers a wide specter and might be perceived as unclear. For most people, design is something visual or physical. Design is primarily problem solving, and the result can equally be an idea for improving a service as it can be a physical product.»

In an ever changing world dominated by visual impulses and communication, commercial brands, organizations and services compete for the users´ attention. Complex processes and rules define the different categories those actors operate in, communicating their diverse messages towards very different target groups.

The course «Design Concepts and Strategies» is about crafting decision-making, guiding strategy development and implementation towards innovative outcomes that benefit companies, brands, organizations and customers alike. The strategic use of design is crucial for solving complex problems, but also for developing strong identities for companies, products and organizations, using systems of visual communication elements.

This course will prepare the students for such processes and supply them with tools and techniques for problem-solving based on real-life scenarios, preferably in an international and interdisciplinary environment. The course module applies a range of interdisciplinary methodologies and approaches for the different steps in a strategic design process - covering research, analysis, strategy development, ideation, concept development, prototyping and implementation. The strategic process involves – especially in the initial phase of the process – analytical methods and interdisciplinary skills. Problem-solving and concept development involve the use of design methodologies such as iteration, sprints, user experience, customer journey, and design thinking. A major focus will be on strategic anchoring, concept development and the visuality of the developed solutions.

Central elements:

  • Methods for research, problem-finding, analyses, evaluations and problem-solving
  • Implementation of various methods into strategic processing
  • Development of design strategy and design brief
  • Problem-solving ideation- and concept development processes
  • Critical evaluation measures
  • Development of visual directions
  • Crafting of design solutions in reference to the design brief
  • Use of visual elements (graphic elements, UI, images, typography, text)
  • Communication channels and campaigns
  • Testing methods

In accordance with the National Qualifications Framework the student will achieve the following learning outcomes after completing the course:


On successful completion of the module, the student will have achieved:

  • Knowledge about initiating a strategic design process
  • Comprehensive skills for developing a relevant design strategy for a client (a product, a service, an organisation, a campaign, ...)
  • Comprehensive knowledge about visualisations and presentations of the chosen strategies and concepts
  • Comprehensive knowledge of relevant theory for embedding and processing the creative solutions in a theory based argumentation

On successful completion of the module, the student will be able to

  • work in an interdisciplinary, intercultural environment - both in groups and individually
  • initiate and structure a design strategy process for a client
  • analyse relevant markets and competitors
  • work out creative concepts and explain them verbally and visually
  • understand complex visual structures according to design rules and theory
  • develop a visual solution based on a chosen concept tp solve a problem
  • prototype, test and evaluate the chosen solutions
Generell kompetanse

On successful completion of the module, the student will be able to

  • participate in strategic design processes
  • apply diverse concept development processes
  • understand the complex requirements to processes in strategy and concept developments for different clients and stakeholders
  • argue for the structure and the outcomes of the creative processes - based on theory and research
  • apply and produce new knowledge into their own future professional work within design, PR, media production, journalism or research
Praktisk organisering og arbeidsmåtar

Teaching takes place through lectures, seminars, workshops and tutoring (individually and in groups). A plan for the term assignment will be given in the beginning of the course. The students will draw up a framework for their strategic approach; they will work on exercises (pre-assignments, design challenges), pitches and presentations, leading to a final, academic and media professional report (individual), documenting the chosen strategy and arguing for the applied methods and steps. The final document will also contain the visual work, including sketches and relevant media files. While the initial process is based on group working, the final product is individual, and the last part of the course will be arranged in order to support individualisation (own timetable will be supplied).

Vilkår for å framstille seg til eksamen

As a pre-requirement, a group´s portfolio is to be handed in (forkrav), containing the strategy presentation and relevant media files.

40 (total for MMP317 and MD211)
Thomas Lewe
Emnet inngår i følgande studieprogram
Assessment FormGroupingDurationGrading scaleProportionCommentSupport MaterialsScope
A-F, der A er best og E er siste ståkarakter
The final assessment will be based on a comprehensive, individual report (6000-8000 words), reflecting upon the developed group strategy, containing a critical evaluation, individual supplements and corrections, if necessary.
Godkjent av: 
Kate Kartveit