While research has been conducted to study the use of concept selection methods in design education, few studies have focused on the influence of these methods on individual students’ and teams’ thought processes in grade-dependent class projects. In order to fill this research gap, the current study was designed to compare the influence of two concept selection methods, the Concept Selection Matrix (CSM) and a new adjective assessment method called the Tool for Assessing Semantic Creativity (TASC), through an experimental study in two sections of a first year engineering design class. The results of the study show that while students were equally confident in the concept ratings from the CSM and TASC methods, they reported that they were more likely to select ideas ranked highly in the CSM method. However, subsequent analysis revealed no difference between the common elements in the ideas rated highly by the two methods and the final design ideas produced.

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