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ERIC Number: ED547929
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 217
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2674-7210-6
From Human Factors to Human Actors to Human Crafters: A Meta-Design Inspired Participatory Framework for Designing in Use
Maceli, Monica Grace
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Drexel University
Meta-design theory emphasizes that system designers can never anticipate all future uses of their system at design time, when systems are being developed. Rather, end users shape their environments in response to emerging needs at use time. Meta-design theory suggests that systems should therefore be designed to adapt to future conditions in the hands of end users. Meta-designers must provide the flexibility for end users to create and shape their own tools through a process of continuous co-design. Knowing that future use can never be entirely anticipated, this dissertation explored meta-design inspired techniques to help anticipate some use time possibilities at design time. This dissertation describes a series of experiments exploring the use of meta-design inspired guidelines as design heuristics in a continuous, participatory co-design process. The experiments consisted of a laboratory study exploring the effects of the meta-design inspired guidelines and end-user participation on design time ideation, a design exercise employing the guidelines on a redesign of the ipl2 digital library (, and a diary-keeping exercise with ipl2 end users. These series of experiments contribute needed empirical work to further our understanding of meta-design and related key concepts, such as end user motivation. The empirical work indicated that the meta-design inspired guidelines were useful in sparking future focused design discussion in groups of designers working at design time, as well as to shift the types of design ideas generated towards building features supporting end-user customization and modification in use. This research contributes an understanding of the desirable properties of a successful meta-design system, in relation to the customization features and functions, as well as the motivations of end-user crafters. Meta-designers must anticipate future end user needs enough to provide the necessary tools for end users to customize the system at use time. This dissertation demonstrates that methods at design time can help to shift design thinking towards such future modifications in the hands of end users. This begins to bridge theory and practice in the research area of meta-design. by exploring new design methods to bring meta-design concerns, such as future customizability, to the forefront of design time work. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A