Our very first Taster Day was held on 11th January 2018 at Dundee and Angus College – Gardyne Campus.
The Service Design Academy’s Taster Day was an opportunity to introduce participants to service design, the tools and methodologies through interactive and dynamic workshops. We welcomed participants from a range of sectors including council, housing association, NHS and accountancy employees.
As we aim to create capacity and build a dynamic and diverse community, it was a pleasure to have such a range of participants interested in finding out more about the world of service design. The programme for the day included an introduction to a variety of tools and methods used within service design in addition to some background theory and local, national and international case examples.
Ice Breaker – To kickstart the taster day, we started with a fun and welcoming ice- breaker. The post-it games requires the participants to line up in two lines facing each other. The aim: to ask the person facing you as many questions as possible, whilst writing their responses on post-it’s and physically sticking it to them. Outcome: the end result is that each participant is covered in post-it notes filled with information about themselves.
This makes for a great introduction to quickly get to know a little bit more about the participants. I joined in with this exercise, only to realise half way through the rest of the workshop, I still had a post-it stuck to my shoe!
Breaking Down Assumptions – Service design is about approaching things from a different mindset and the ‘Breaking Down Assumptions’ exercise challenges you to do just that.
By challenging the judgements people make on a daily basis through the use of photographs, our participants demonstrated that making decisions or assumptions based on little or no user research can be dangerous and costly. How much do you truly know about your users?
Rip & Mix – Tool for Idea Generation – Mike Press, Co-Director of Open Change, led the Rip & Mix session. Mike and I have worked alongside each other for just short of a year now but this was the first opportunity for us to present and run a workshop together. My passion and enthusiasm to teach and share knowledge of Service Design is mirrored by Mike and further complimented by his vast experience, fantastic, and colourful examples in addition to his inspiring presentation skills.
Participants worked collaboratively to identify ‘pain points’ that affect their working lives, mixing these characteristics with those of a good service, to create a new service/product/idea.
Observational Research – The afternoon session was held at the Open Change Office in Dundee City Centre. Mike Press and Hazel White ran an introductory workshop into observational research as a method for conducting user research.
The participants were split into groups and sent into the City Centre to observe different user experiences based around public transport. I joined the group observing the train station. We had quite an eye-opening experience and the group made a vast amount of observations within a short timescale.
I particularly enjoyed the opportunity to immerse myself with the participants and experience some of the workshop alongside the group. This experience also gave me the chance to observe our observing participants, in true service design style!
The participants worked extremely well collaboratively whist actively getting involved in all of the programmed activities. It was an absolute pleasure to have the opportunity to run the Taster Day and we have received some fantastic, positive and humbling feedback (see below). Most importantly, I think everyone had a fun and enjoyable day whilst gaining an insight into the world of service design.
Blog by Katie Bain, Development Officer
If you are interested then please join our mailing list by clicking here. We will be organising future Taster Days in the coming months. For further information on all of our course and event offerings, please visit our website www.sda.ac.uk