Abstract

The objective of this research is to understand how different representations of requirements influence idea generation in terms of quantity, addressment, novelty, and variety of conceptual sketches. Requirements are testable statements of need, desires, and wishes of the stakeholders that are used by engineers to frame the problem. Project success is highly dependent on well-defined requirements documents. An experimental study was conducted with 52 fourth year mechanical engineering undergraduate students. Two design problems were formulated with three different representations: a problem statement with embedded requirements, a problem statement and a traditional requirement list, and a problem statement with contextualized scrum stories. Each student was provided both design problems with two different representations of requirements. It was found that the use of contextualized scrum story representations significantly affected the novelty of solution fragments and addressment of requirements, while no significant change in variety and quantity was seen. Finally, it was found that quantity is not directly related to the number of requirements addressed in the sketches.

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