Design Probes for People with Dementia

Julia Anne Garde, Mascha C. van der Voort, Kristina Niedderer

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review


    In order to include persons with dementia in the MinD project actively, design probes were developed to provide insight into their perspectives. We applied probes due to their exploratory character and participation through self-documentation. The aim of this paper is to reflect on the design of the probes in relation to the outcomes as a source of inspiration for designers. More specifically, we investigate the openness and tangibility of the probes, and their content relating to the past, the current or the future. The five participants completed the probes to a large extent. The openness of assignments influenced their completion and the resulting value for empathizing and inspiration for designers: More defined assignments led to more sharing of personal and sensitive information than very open ones. While crafty, tangible assignments were filled in more extensively than less tangible ones, the classical writing assignments resulted more often in more introspective and reflective information from participants. Furthermore, participants filled in assignments about past memories more extensively than those relating to future goals.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of DRS 2018. Design as a catalyst for change
    EditorsCristiano Storni, Keelin Leahy, Muireann McMahon, Peter Lloyd, Erik Bohemia
    Number of pages15
    ISBN (Electronic) 978-1-912294-21-3
    Publication statusPublished - 25 Jun 2018
    EventDesign Research Society 2018: Catalyst - University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland
    Duration: 25 Jun 201828 Jun 2018
    Conference number: 5


    ConferenceDesign Research Society 2018
    Abbreviated titleDRS 2018
    Internet address


    • design probes; design for dementia; active participation; engagement


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