Cognitive Load Management and Architectural Design Outcomes

DS 73-1 Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Design Creativity Volume 1

Year: 2012
Editor: Duffy, A.; Nagai, Y.; Taura, T.
Author: Mohamed-Ahmed, A.; Bonnardel, N.; Côté, P.; Tremblay, S.
Section: Cognition I
Page(s): 33-44


The aim of this study was to analyze the link between the way designers manage cognitive load during the process of architectural design and the outcome of this process, that is, the quality of the creative designs they produce. To this end, we quantitatively measured cognitive load by asking 36 architecture students to perform a secondary task while they were using three classic design media (hand sketch, physical model and Sketch-Up, a modelling program). Then, the students‘ designs were qualitatively assessed by eight architects acting as judges (four teachers and four professionals). No correlation was found between cognitive load and project quality for any of the three media.

Keywords: cognitive activity, design media, evaluation


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