problem-solving

Information architecture in design education: developing innovation through structured thinking

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Discipline: 

Media & Communications Design

In this paper, we position information architecture design and the thinking skills required for its practice as a practical application of the theory of cyberdesign.

We further suggest that these thinking skills, while commonly applied to digital domains, transcend the digital because, at the cognitive level, the information architect is dealing, first and foremost with indeterminate problems. We describe how information architecture design involves the process of deconstructing dysfunctional formations (problems) and the characteristics of the design applied in the reformulation of parts into a functional reformulation.

Finding Thought: an investigation into the development of critical thinking skills in Industrial Design

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Discipline: 

Design Education Research

In higher education today, it is imperative to equip students with the skills required by their future profession. One such skill, as required of a professional Industrial Designer, is the ability to find creative and suitable solutions to often complex problems. As decision making and problem solving are key elements of a professional industrial designer‘s practice, they should be developed and encouraged as part of the tertiary programme. The trend towards learner driven investigation and research, as well as interactive mixed methodologies, have facilitated many projects requiring thinking skills. But does the learning environment support and develop these skills?

Considering "design with intent" within graphic design at a University of Technology

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Discipline: 

Graphic Design & Visual Art

Although based in various design disciplines the concept of user centred design (UCD) and "design with intent" has been linked to the notion of "human-centred principles", "design for behavioural change", "persuasion technologies" and "interaction design" at international design institutions for some time.

Understanding how user behaviour can influence technological solutions is critical for designers wishing to effectively tackle social issues such as eco-solutions, effective wayfinding design as well as the design of information brochures/pamphlets. Designers influence behaviour from a distance through the creative products and services that are produced based on their understanding of user behaviour.

Autoethnography as a research method in design research at Universities

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Discipline: 

Media & Communications Design

It is generally accepted that the process of design is "messy" in that the final design "emerges" from an engagement of the designer with a plethora of sources, stimuli, interactions, commission demands, client needs (and wants) and other practices that engage with the problem at hand. By contrast, most definitions of research and research report writing emphasise the notion of a "systematic investigation" leading to a solution of the problem. Furthermore, most research requires the demonstration of so-called "new knowledge." Thus a research report has to (a) demonstrate evidence of some form of systematic thinking, has to (b) present the findings of that systematic thinking, and has to (c) argue the case from this for "new knowledge".

An integrated teaching strategy: Reflecting on a collaborative design project

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Discipline: 

Design Education Research

An integrated teaching strategy was employed at a first year level in the Department Interior Design to strengthen the connection between first year modules and include participation from a related design discipline in the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture. The teaching strategy aimed to integrate the knowledge and skills that students gain within separate modules and develop their understanding of the interdependence of content that is taught throughout the programme and across departments.

DEFSA conferences

DEFSA promotes relevant research with the focus on design + education through its biennial conferences, to promote professionalism, accountability and ethics in the education of young designers

Design Educators of South Africa...

With your support & active membership, the Design Educators Forum of Southern Africa can positively influence the young designer's formative training and promote all facets of design across Africa