Interactive Seminar

Day 1: Tuesday, 13 September


Art and Design-based research methods for co-designing a Mixed Realities Playkit to prepare Children for an MRI Scan without a General Anaesthetic

Session convener: Dylan Yamada-Rice, Manchester Metropolitan University

Our proposal takes the format of presentation, discussion and practical workshop: Presentation: outlining the design-based and playful methods used to include children directly in the development of a MedTech project. This is done in relation to our Innovate UK funded R&D of an innovative mixed realities (virtual and augmented) playkit to help 4-10-year-olds undertake an MRI scan without a GA. The 30-month project included methods of co-design and production that used drawing, model-making, user testing, and character design. As well as, regular design summits with the transdisciplinary team that included researchers and developers from Dubit (a company specialising R&D of children’s digital products), Sheffield Children’s Hospital NHS Trust, the Royal College of Art, University of Sheffield and the Glasgow School of Art. Finally, we will highlight how these methods led us to understand that the ways in which children make sense of medical information and procedures is fundamentally different from adults. In particular, children’s desire for medtech that is playful, has spaces for open-ended play and storytelling to exist alongside the dissemination of medical information. Discussion: We will invite discussion on the benefits of including children in the design of health products and interventions, the methods and means used to analyse the outputs of design-based methods. Practical Workshop: We will provide the opportunity for participants to try one of our methods first-hand. In doing so, introducing the concept of Cultural Probes from design-research. Following this, we will offer physical materials for participants to prototype their own Cultural Probe in relation to a range of health projects. This will provide opportunities to extend on the methods we created and explore the possibility of their application to other child health projects. Project Link: