Alan Crisp


Staff Group(s)
Product Design


Teaching; undergraduate and postgraduate teaching of design, graphical methods, design studies, engineering design, engineering design projects, fluids, engineer in society, management for engineers, European law, waste control, project management for engineers, information retrieval and communication techniques and report writing skills. Programme leader BSc (Hons) Product Design Suite, Programme Manager for BEng (Hons) Mechanical, Electrical and Integrated Engineering. Research/Consultancy: Design and Manufacture of sustainable and inclusive products; responsible design. The integration of European authored legislation with the requirements of UK based industry together with the transposition, interpretation and subsequent implementation of the legal and technical requirements. Design of products and machinery for major local industries.


A 'one off' design commission ‘the design and realisation of a 'one off’ tandem to aid the development of an adolescent male who suffers from cerebral palsy’, integrated with new methods of curriculum development being undertaken at Nottingham Trent University within the restructured subject area of Product Design. The design is being undertaken by students on programmes of study leading to;

  1. BSc (Hons) Degree Product Design (Years One and Two), and
  2. BSc (Hons) Degree Mechanical Engineering, Final Year.

The design supervision is undertaken by the programme leaders for the courses (Alan Crisp and Jim Dale) who are principal lectures in engineering design and product design. Alan has conducted research in the field of inclusive design for the past 15 years. The integrity of the design work is underpinned by the experience and knowledge of the designers, the evidence for which can be demonstrated through published papers and extant products developed and realised in this particular field. It is anticipated that reporting of three areas of particular interest will be forthcoming from the work:

  • Pedagogic issues of students working in groups across different levels of HE and different disciplines.
  • Design for Manufacturing issues relative to the use of new techniques, i.e. CAD / CAM in particular laser cutting and jig and tool development.
  • The design and manufacture of a tandem tricycle for the disabled; including rear axle drive with differential and rear steering.

The authors intend to use the experience gathered to introduce more innovative teaching and learning methods to the subject area post 2007. The authors also acknowledge a grant of £400 from Radcliffe-on-Trent Lions, to aid with the design and build of the tandem.

Career overview

  • Inclusive Design
  • Anthropometrics
  • Design Methodologies
  • Research Methodologies
  • Pedagogic research relative to the study of design
  • Materials Design
  • Design for Manufacture
  • Sustainable Design

Research areas

Advanced Design and Manufacturing Engineering Centre

Curricula content within the design context
This research concentrates on explicit and specific areas of design teaching and programme development. This focus comes at a time when eclectic influences from many governing bodies begin to impinge upon the activities of course authors and designers. The research analyses the methods employed when attempting to incorporate contemporary issues within the core modules of design teaching, i.e. graphics, CAD, design and critical studies. It examines the introduction by the professional bodies of new datum for 'entry qualifications' coupled with an increased awareness by the educational authorities of the need to evidence 'quality' and the effects these will have on design teaching.

Sustainable development
The main area of concern in this research is to integrate the aim of sustainable development as embodied in such concepts as the European Environmental programme 'sustainable development', within the curricula at undergraduate level, focusing on the relationship between teaching, assessing and the specified objectives for the course.

It compares traditional courses, which have tended to focus on the 'nuts and bolts' of specific subjects. The structure of the courses follows the modern trend in education; that is, discreet modules superimposed on a two semester system or year long system, which span the traditional three term academic year.

Research: Biomechanics and Sport
The main thrust of this research, in which Alan has been active for six years, is to provide athletes with disabilities the opportunity for active participation in sport. Therefore, the design of an improved tricycle running frame for athletes with cerebral palsy is of particular importance.

External activity

External Moderator/Examiner Experience

  • 2003-2007, Examiner Product Design, Bournemouth University, Franchise Bournemouth and Poole College of Art.
  • 2004-2007, Examiner HND / C Mechanical, Electrical and Aeronautical Engineering, North East Wales Institute of Higher Education, University of Wales Associate College.
  • 1995-1997, Moderator for the BSc (Hons) Safety Health and Environmental Management: Wirral Metropolitan College, (subjects: design safety: ergonomics: anthropometrics: product safety: safety engineering).
  • 1995-1997, Moderator for the Diploma in Safety Health and Environmental Management: Wirral Metropolitan College, (subjects: design safety: ergonomics: anthropometrics: product safety: safety engineering).
  • 1997-present, Moderator/Examiner for exchange programme with Ecole Superieur ISAIP/ESAIP Institut Superieur, D’Action Internationale ET De Production, Anjou, France, (subjects: design safety: ergonomics: anthropometrics: product safety: safety engineering: product design: computer aided product design).
  • Malaysian Franchise Colleges: BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering: (subjects: design safety: ergonomics: anthropometrics: product safety: safety engineering: product design: computer aided product design, industrial law).

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