kimberley crofts

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an information and communication designer living in London

Meaning-making

If information design is about meaning-making (see quote below) then if an audience participates in the meaning-making process does it follow that the information will be more successful?

Ways of participating:

  • Interviews (from which a design strategy is devised)
  • User testing (testing of the design within the target audience)
  • Participatory design (engaging the audience in the creation of the document).

This is not any sort of revelation but is a fairly basic description of user-centered design. Would an investigation into documents created in this participatory way reveal anything interesting? Have they been tested for success? Can any conclusions be reached if not?

I am struggling with understanding to what level I have to create original content, as in, can my dissertation just be a collection of other people’s research or should I create my own studies? How the hell would I go about this if so?

Brings me back to the question: what are the gaps in the research? Where can I situated my dissertation so that it provides something worthwhile to the area? Should I be looking to write a dissertation about an area I want to work in after my studies?

My idea that I had during the DD4D conference would probably yield more original thought as I cannot find any material (as yet) on it. I was looking at how captions can aid literacy. A fairly broad theme that could encompass film, TV, print, and online communications. What is a caption and how is it used to aid understanding? How do captions aid meaning-making of texts? Where should they be placed and how should they be designed to maximise understanding without adding confusion to the document?

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