Principles of Design PtIII

How can I help people learn from a design?

16 Accessibility – Objects and environments should be designed to be usable, without modification, by as many people as possible.


The Handle on this Pizza warmer is large and inviting, making it an obvious point for a person to pull on.
This Pizza warmer appears to be lacking a handle or point for a customer to grab on to. The customer has to figure out how to open it to get to the food inside.


18 Advance Organizer – a brief introduction to orientate users prior to learning something new.


Vector image of red pencil and sword royalty-free stock vector art
This image brings on the idea of an analogy. Introducing this analogy may be useful to understand another version of this idea.
While they function differently, there is an analogy to their names and shape. If you were teaching a person who did not know how to use a computer mouse, you might suggest clicking on the left back hip instead.


36 Biophilia Effect – exposure to nature, be it real or not, enhances focus, and promotes calm

These Psyciatric hospitals are very well decorated in nature themes. Each introduces nature in a different way. Even the abstract nature of the bamboo poles helps to calm a person to help them better manage their feelings.


38 Cathedral Effect – High ceiling, high abstraction.

This bright and open space is perfect for the creative spirit. It has all the elements of abstract thinking.
This classroom is spartan, and the ceiling is closer to the floor.  This forces the students to focus on the topic and take on more analytical thinking

40 Chunking – taking high quantities of information and reducing it to smaller quantities. example take the numbers 428056. Instead of memorizing all six numbers, it can be reduced to the numbers 42-80-56.


Images that represent cultures like this are a form of chunking. You can look at each child and gain an understanding of what each represents. 
Area codes are another way of chunking. They can be remembered as a single number to know which area you are trying to call to.


42 Classical Conditioning – Pavlovian response


As a designer, I can influence how you think by using certain types of media to direct your thoughts towards learning something new.


52 Comparison – apples to apples, single context, benchmarks


The first two images feature maps of a similar design and color gradient. The third map, while measuring a comparable drink, is differently shaped, uses different colors, and uses a different metric.


72 Depth of Processing – remember by thinking about it


Starting or ending with a question helps to open a person’s mind to thinking about the thing that you are trying to promote.


86 Exposure Effect – maintenance vs. elaborative


This is a classic example of elaborative exposure. 


104 Forgiveness – minimize negative consequences due to inevitable error


Google knows when you spell things wrong and helps to adjust its search. It also lets the user know where the error was, and what it was corrected to.


112 Garbage In–Garbage Out – good in, good out. Bad in, bad out


This question road sign shows how asking the right questions can get you to where you want to be. Not asking would result in you not getting the information you wanted.


122 Hierarchy – information that is arranged to show relationships and increase knowledge


This hierarchy helps a person guide another person’s thoughts down different avenues. By picking an aspect to pay attention to, you can gain a better understanding of the relationships


134 Immersion – the Real world is lost to awareness, and focus on the task. usually, results in joy and satisfaction


This French classroom is decorated with French posters and images. The books are all in French and the only thing spoken is French. This creates an immersive environment that can result in a more enjoyable and less confusing learning environment.


138 Interference Effects – Stroop interference, gamer, proactive, retroactive


The previous idea of how doors work would interfere with a person’s ability to open an emergency door. This decal helps to prevent that confusion and allow for better handling of the situation as it happens.



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