Healthcare Design

California College of the Arts


The life and death implications of healthcare make it an intimidating space for design. We will demystify the complexities and show you the critical role that design plays in healthcare. We will explore how you can use design methods to transform healthcare to be more empathetic, effective and inclusive. Our design methods will include observations, prototyping, and usability testing to create solutions for a variety of healthcare challenges such as diabetes, end-of-life care, pregnancy, or substance abuse. You must bring a willingness to educate yourself in these healthcare challenges. We will design at different scales: from small medical products to connected services, and finally to larger healthcare systems. Our designs will be practical, conceptually provocative and potentially political. All of the design will be grounded in real-world context, informed by readings, hospital visits, discussions with doctors, patients and other stakeholders. While we will broadly focus on UX and Service design, we will not limit the possible design solution to digital experiences alone. This class is interdisciplinary. We welcome students from Interaction, Graphic, Interior, and Industrial Design. The coursework will be both in teams and individual. Our goal is to help you produce portfolio pieces and give you the tools and insights you need so that you can work with a hospital, medical device maker, or digital health company.