A Critical Appraisal of Mixed Reality Prototyping to Support Studio Design Education

DS 122: Proceedings of the Design Society: 24th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED23)

Year: 2023
Editor: Kevin Otto, Boris Eisenbart, Claudia Eckert, Benoit Eynard, Dieter Krause, Josef Oehmen, Nadège Troussier
Author: Ranscombe, Charlie (1); Zhang, Wendy (2); Snider, Chris (3); Hicks, Ben (3)
Series: ICED
Institution: 1: Swinburne University of Technology;2: University of Canterbury;3: University of Bristol
Section: Design Methods
Page(s): 0081-0090
DOI number: https://doi.org/10.1017/pds.2023.9
ISSN: 2732-527X


Mixed Reality (MR) technologies are widely available and applied in a variety of design and engineering applications. MR prototypes capture the respective benefits of physical and digital prototypes by merging these domains saving the time and resources required to create them. This advantage is compelling in the context of design education where tight time and resource constraints exist. However, it is known that new digital prototyping tools can cause problems for students applying appropriate prototyping tools during practice-based studio design projects. Our paper contributes a systematic appraisal of MR prototyping’s proposed dimensions value against constraints and issues in design studio education. This highlights MR Visualisation and Knowledge Management dimensions as most readily realised in education. Recommendations are then reflected on via an illustrative case study into the implementation of MR prototyping via these dimensions. Reflections corroborate the value proposition, but also highlight a need for further research exploring activities to scaffold MR prototyping to further support reflective design thinking.

Keywords: Industrial design, Design education, Fidelity, Prototypes, Virtual reality

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