Design, Gender and Aesthetics 7.5 credits

Design,genus och estetik
First cycle, G0005A
Course syllabus valid: Autumn 2019 Sp 1 - Present
The version indicates the term and period for which this course syllabus is valid. The most recent version of the course syllabus is shown first.

Syllabus established
by 19 Feb 2010

Last revised
by Director of Undergraduate Studies Daniel Örtqvist, Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences 18 Feb 2019

Education level
First cycle
Grade scale
G U 3 4 5
Industrial Design
Subject group (SCB)
Other Subjects within Technology

Entry requirements

In order to meet the general entry requirements for first cycle studies you must have successfully completed upper secondary education and documented skills in English language and Good knowledge in English, equivalent to English 6.

More information about English language requirements


The selection is based on final school grades or Swedish Scholastic Aptitude Test.

Course Aim
After the course students are expected to have acquired knowledge of basic design and gender theory, aesthetics, and basic concepts. In addition to this, students are expected to have gained familiarity with design that challenges stereotypes of women and men, feminine and masculine.

The course is based on evidence, but avoids being too theoretical. Ability to reflect and formulate impressions and assessments is the target.

The course contains the following elements:
  • The concepts of gender and equal opportunities for women and men: their history and how they are used today in research and development. The choice to “go with the flow or turn the tables” - both options are possible and legitimate - the course idea is to shed light on the choice as such.
  • The concept of design and its meaning, basic design theory; Design as tool for normative intervention, how societal norms are reflected in design. Feminine and masculine aesthetics in commercial and popular culture.
  • Design and aesthetics as an expression of the individual and his or her world. Notable design examples put in context – individual designers, originators and craftspeople and their works.
  • Exercises based on Karin Widerberg’s memory work method, adapted to the design and visual language.

Lectures and instructions are available via LTU’s system for internet based courses. In the same space there are rooms for discussions and files for exercises.

Commented design exercises using technique of own choice: sketch, photo collages, simple pictures that are changed manually or by using widely used software as paint, or more advanced methods for the student who masters such techniques. Comments must demonstrate an ability to consider and advance the course content. The interaction between design expressions and comments will determine the grade.

Students must register for the courses themselves, or contact ETS educational administration, not later than three days after the quarter commences. Failure to do so can result in the place being lost. This rule also applies to students with a guaranteed place.

Maria Uden

Literature. Valid from Autumn 2016 Sp 1 (May change until 10 weeks before course start)
Connell, Raewyn W. & Pearse, Rebecca (2015) Gender: In World Perspective. Polity Press. 180 pages
Hansson, L & Jahnke, M (2009). GENDER BENDING THROUGH DESIGN - AN ACCOUNT OF A STUDENT PROJECT ON GENDER. Engaging Artifacts 2009 Oslo . 10 pages *
Ilstedt Hjelm, Sara (2002). Semiotics in product design. Department of Numerical Analysis and Computer Science, KTH 26 pages *
Pruitt, John & Grudin, Jonathan (2003). Personas: Practice and Theory. 2003 ACM 1-58113-728-1 03/0006 5.00. 15 pages *
Widerberg, Karin (1999) Alternative methods – Alternative Understandings: Exploring the Social and the Multiple 'I' through memory-Work. Article in Sosiologisk tidskrift no 2 20 pages *
Wikberg Nilsson, Åsa (2012). Gender and design. Excerpt from the dissertation Re-thinking designing (Wikberg Nilsson, 2012). 6 pages *

Additional stencils and videos (links or provided in Canvas) for the course exercises

* Available in full text through the course room in LTU’s course portal (Canvas)

Course offered by
Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences

CodeDescriptionGrade scaleHPStatusFrom periodTitle
0002IntroductionU G#0.50MandatoryA12
0003Compulsory assignment reportG U 3 4 53.00MandatoryA12
0004Compulsory assignment reportG U 3 4 54.00MandatoryA12

Study guidance
Study guidance for the course is to be found in our learning platform Canvas before the course starts. Students applying for single subject courses get more information in the Welcome letter. You will find the learning platform via My LTU.