ADA5111 - Design thinking for business - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Art, Design and Architecture

Organisational Unit

Department of Design

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Ilya Fridman


Dr Julie Roberts

Unit guides



  • Second semester 2019 (On-campus)


Must be enrolled in B6005 Master of Business




Design Thinking brings together some approaches that are known in the sciences and humanities, such as analysis and synthesis, but applies them in ways that are particular to a design approach. This unit is developed to introduce non-cognate students in the Master of Business to Design Thinking, and to its application within a wide range of problems and situations. These skills and strategies include a range of conceptual and communication approaches, ways to investigate and reconsider the context in which we work and live, as well as potential for innovation. Design Thinking can enable a more flexible approach to problems, and a more nuanced engagement with the complex issues of our contemporary world. This unit will introduce students to the key skills and practices associated with Design Thinking, and offer opportunities to explore the application of these basic creativity techniques.


Upon successful completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate understanding of the concepts of design thinking and their application;
  2. Identify and analyse ill-defined, real-world project problems and relevant design thinking approaches;
  3. Apply Design Thinking methods and approaches to a project-based problem, to develop new perspectives on key issues and to identify potential opportunities;
  4. Develop, test and evaluate original proposals in response to project-based problems;
  5. Develop an awareness of preferred approaches to complex tasks, and ways these may be extended through Design Thinking.


100% in-semester assessment

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled online and face to face learning activities and independent study. Independent study may include associated reading and preparation for scheduled activities. The unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information