User and designer
Marta Więckowska


Short bio:

Researcher and Visual Communication designer. She is interested in designing research methods which involve users into the design process and support designer’s decisions. She works at the Institute for Visual Research and Interaction which is part of the faculty of design fo the Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice (Poland). She teaches methods of visual research, usability tests, psychophysiology of vision. Did sematic research together with prof. ASP Wiesław Gdowicz for a project interface based on gesture in cooperation with The Institute of Theoretical and Applied Informatics of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Contributed to many conferences (Space X, Sign 09, Sign 11, Interfejs Użytkownika - Kansei w praktyce 2011) where she presented influence of research on design process. Author of visual identification, websites and publications.

Why did you want to participate in this workshop?

As a teacher at the Academy of Fine Art in Katowice I deal every day with explaining-, sometimes very difficult issues, to students. I teach research methods which includes methods, psychology, statistics, and data visualisation. I found Dan Boyarski’s experience as very interesting according to my research field and data visualisation. There were two main reasons to attend the workshop: - on one hand to become a better teacher and gain my own experience in data visualisation - and on the other hand to compile and arrange the issues I teach and find a visual way that makes it easier to understand. I wanted also to show what kind of research we have been conducting (interaction, semantics, perception) at the Institute for Visual Research and Interaction over the last 10 years.

Source of your data:

Institute for Visual Research and Interaction

Goal of your project?

Research methods as a tool for designer’s decisions Certain design problems make it necessary for visual communication designers to objectively verify their decisions. Especially it is important to understand the possibilities and requirements of users, of every user in fact. The experience gives us a lot of information but sometimes it is not enough. We can imagine how our design is understood by others but we never can be absolutely sure. As many different kind of users we include in the research, the result will be more inclusive. The intuition and experience are very important but well prepared research can give us much unexpected information. The question is: how can we get to know other people’s needs, possibilities, way of thinking? We prepare the research with special conditions, observe the reaction and then analyze it. This project aims to describe the research approach and techniques which facilitate making of objective design decisions, allowing the adaptation of the physical properties of a visual communication message, or its component parts, to the requirements the object in question has to meet. The workshop was a great opportunity to visualise the field of research methods, its stages and characteristics and to show the relation between research and design process.