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Design for assembly meaning : a framework for designers to design products that support operator cognition during the assembly process

Davy Parmentier (UGent) , Bram Van Acker (UGent) , Jan Detand (UGent) and Jelle Saldien (UGent)
(2020) COGNITION TECHNOLOGY & WORK. 22(3). p.615-632
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Abstract
Designing assembly instructions is mostly considered to be a non-designer task. Hence, in many companies, it is performed by production planners or instructional designers. However, analysing product components and looking for clues on how these components can be fitted together into a subassembly or final product is a fundamental part of assembly. Product designers play an important role in the way these components are perceived by the operator. This paper discusses the need and importance of a new approach to product design focused on how the assembly design can promote meaning to the operator, supporting operator cognition. The aim of this approach is to guide assembly operators more intuitively through their increasingly complex tasks. Doing so will allow them to avoid some of the major drawbacks that are present when using procedural instructions. Hence, this approach has the potential to decrease cognitive load and frustration, and increase mental wellbeing, work motivation and efficiency. As a first step towards this new approach, a conceptual framework is constructed, and insights are formulated after reviewing various design theories and concepts of design for meaning on their potential in a context of manual assembly.
Keywords
product design, manual assembly, meaning, cognition, PROCEDURAL INSTRUCTIONS, INDUSTRY 4.0, INFORMATION, AFFORDANCE, PERFORMANCE, COMPLEXITY, MODEL, VARIETY, STATICS, QUALITY

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MLA
Parmentier, Davy, et al. “Design for Assembly Meaning : A Framework for Designers to Design Products That Support Operator Cognition during the Assembly Process.” COGNITION TECHNOLOGY & WORK, vol. 22, no. 3, 2020, pp. 615–32, doi:10.1007/s10111-019-00588-x.
APA
Parmentier, D., Van Acker, B., Detand, J., & Saldien, J. (2020). Design for assembly meaning : a framework for designers to design products that support operator cognition during the assembly process. COGNITION TECHNOLOGY & WORK, 22(3), 615–632. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10111-019-00588-x
Chicago author-date
Parmentier, Davy, Bram Van Acker, Jan Detand, and Jelle Saldien. 2020. “Design for Assembly Meaning : A Framework for Designers to Design Products That Support Operator Cognition during the Assembly Process.” COGNITION TECHNOLOGY & WORK 22 (3): 615–32. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10111-019-00588-x.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Parmentier, Davy, Bram Van Acker, Jan Detand, and Jelle Saldien. 2020. “Design for Assembly Meaning : A Framework for Designers to Design Products That Support Operator Cognition during the Assembly Process.” COGNITION TECHNOLOGY & WORK 22 (3): 615–632. doi:10.1007/s10111-019-00588-x.
Vancouver
1.
Parmentier D, Van Acker B, Detand J, Saldien J. Design for assembly meaning : a framework for designers to design products that support operator cognition during the assembly process. COGNITION TECHNOLOGY & WORK. 2020;22(3):615–32.
IEEE
[1]
D. Parmentier, B. Van Acker, J. Detand, and J. Saldien, “Design for assembly meaning : a framework for designers to design products that support operator cognition during the assembly process,” COGNITION TECHNOLOGY & WORK, vol. 22, no. 3, pp. 615–632, 2020.
@article{8625551,
  abstract     = {Designing assembly instructions is mostly considered to be a non-designer task. Hence, in many companies, it is performed by production planners or instructional designers. However, analysing product components and looking for clues on how these components can be fitted together into a subassembly or final product is a fundamental part of assembly. Product designers play an important role in the way these components are perceived by the operator. This paper discusses the need and importance of a new approach to product design focused on how the assembly design can promote meaning to the operator, supporting operator cognition. The aim of this approach is to guide assembly operators more intuitively through their increasingly complex tasks. Doing so will allow them to avoid some of the major drawbacks that are present when using procedural instructions. Hence, this approach has the potential to decrease cognitive load and frustration, and increase mental wellbeing, work motivation and efficiency. As a first step towards this new  approach, a conceptual framework is constructed, and insights are formulated after reviewing various design theories and concepts of design for meaning on their potential in a context of manual assembly.},
  author       = {Parmentier, Davy and Van Acker, Bram and Detand, Jan and Saldien, Jelle},
  issn         = {1435-5558},
  journal      = {COGNITION TECHNOLOGY & WORK},
  keywords     = {product design,manual assembly,meaning,cognition,PROCEDURAL INSTRUCTIONS,INDUSTRY 4.0,INFORMATION,AFFORDANCE,PERFORMANCE,COMPLEXITY,MODEL,VARIETY,STATICS,QUALITY},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {615--632},
  title        = {Design for assembly meaning : a framework for designers to design products that support operator cognition during the assembly process},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10111-019-00588-x},
  volume       = {22},
  year         = {2020},
}

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