Design Thinking & Communication (DTC)
Design Thinking and Communication (DTC), is a required two-quarter course for all first-year student at Northwestern Engineering. DTC is a cross-school course jointly taught by faculty throughout the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science and from the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences Cook Family Writing Program.
An innovative course that embeds communication instruction in the context of design, DTC immediately puts students to work on real design problems submitted by individuals, non-profits, entrepreneurs, and industry members. In DTC, all students design for real people and communicate to real audiences.
DTC was introduced in 1997 as part of the Engineering First® curriculum. This curriculum created a new pedagogy for engineering education and has been nominated for a National Academy of Engineering award for educational excellence and featured in the Wall Street Journal.
DTC student teams integrate communication skills and design thinking while they:
- Study a problem from multiple perspectives
- Learn how to frame the design challenge properly
- Ideate, prototype, and iterate solutions
- Communicate their ideas clearly in design reviews, reports, and presentations
- Learn from the overall design process how to create value, prepare for their careers, and participate more fully in society
Co-taught by faculty throughout the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science and from the Cook Family Writing Program in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, DTC teaches the writing and presentation skills needed to thrive in a competitive marketplace.
If you have additional questions about DTC, please email DTC or call us at 847-467-1604.