Designing in Digital D&T

Exploring opportunities for designing within Digital D&T and the tools available.

Designing in Digital D&T


Underpinning our approach is that within design and technology the main thrust of the teaching should be to enable pupils to make design decisions.

As pupils move through a design task they will need to find out, develop their ideas, implement them, use maths and science but, not necessarily in that or any other prescribed order, often revisiting the different procedures several times in an order determined by their progress in the task and the nature of the task. Pupils need to be encouraged to learn to develop their design ideas rather than following formulaic rules.

Digital Tools for Designing

Digital tools enable you to achieve tasks in designing with speed, quality and accuracy compared with using other methods such as drawing by hand and modelling with soft materials. It is important to use the right digital tool to avoid unnecessary time-wasting on presentation issues (unless this is specifically required for marketing) rather than progressing the design.  Bear in mind also that some tools need time spent on learning their interface before getting a useful output. Discuss the choice with your teacher.

The tools are divided into 3 sections below to reflect stages in designing. Starting Points explore the range of possible products for designing and their intended users.

  • Exploring and generating ideas
    • Starting Points - explore the range of possible products for designing and their intended users
    • Analyse and research context - links to open source software available to support design decisions, including sustainability, designing with intent and survey software
    • Develop product design criteria and specification
  • Planning and evaluation
    • Manage time and resources – links to software available to assist with project scheduling and time and resource management
    • Test and evaluate – links to software which enable Mechanical Analysis, Finite Element Analysis, electrical, electronic and microelectronic circuit virtual testing
  • Developing and modelling ideas
    • Communicate and Market ideas – links to software which assist with presentation
    • Model, prototype and develop for manufacturing
      • Digital tools for Textiles Fashion
      • Digital tools for Product Design
      • Digital tools for Electronics
      • Hardware for digital manufacture

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Design and Technology (D&T) is the inspiring, rigorous and practical subject which prepares all young people to live and work in the designed and made world.

We are focused on giving you the tools, knowledge and information you need to become more effective, more experienced and more efficient. Giving you access to expert opinions. And creating a place where you can air your views, ask your questions and so help make a difference to your life and those of your pupils. We want to hear from you. We want to know how we can help. And we want you to join us.

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