Design Education Research

The role of student-staff partnership and collaborative learning in interior design education

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Design Education Research

This paper aims to propose and motivate further research in the sphere of Interior Design education in a private college environment in South Africa. The study focuses on finding strategies that motivate for student-staff partnership and collaborative learning in the theory subject of Critical Studies (CS) within a hybrid/online learning environment. The discussion takes the reader on a journey of analysis and discussion starting with traditional method of education and alternative pedagogies; the value of critical thinking skills in the twenty-first century and research based-education. The emphasis is on Critical Theory in Higher Education (HE) as a valuable drive in stimulating self-reflection that produces graduates that are contributing members to our society.

Digital transformation of pedagogy in design education in the virtual learning environment

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Elgie, ChristinaStadio

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Design Education Research

The urgent need for pedagogical change, made possible by Digital Transformation (DT), is indisputable in design education (DE). This study considers the relationship between the evolution of Virtual Learning Environments (VLE) and the need for modernised pedagogy suitable for learning DE online, particularly by African students. The focus of the investigation is on the methods used in delivering DE curricula in relation to these technological platforms. This is carried out using a qualitative research approach with a phenomenological analysis framework. A conceptual model is constructed to explain the phenomena of interest. The research process reflects a constructivist epistemological paradigm based on the direct experiences and perspectives of the participants.

Collaborating online with strangers

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Design Education Research

This paper reports on a qualitative case study exploring design student reflections about their experiences of a transdisciplinary online collaboration in a real-world learning project implemented in October 2020. The spread of a global pandemic that caused a primary and rapid shift from a contact-based learning model to fully fledged online teaching marked the year and learning for student participants. Applying an interpretivist paradigm, the researchers thematically analysed reflection essays from a sample of thirty-two design students to expose dominant perceptions.

Research ethics in South African visual communication design: A principlist approach to non-anonymity

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Design Education Research

Keeping participants anonymous is a core principle in research ethics and accepted as international best practice. In this paper, we consider ways of improving the ethical quality of visual communication research in the ‘new normal’ situation created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, we use an argumentative discourse approach to discuss issues and concerns surrounding anonymity from a principlist perspective. The first section provides an orientation on international best practices and core research ethics principles. The second section reflects on South African research ethics committees, their functions, and the poor fit between a health research-orientated approach and research in art and design departments.

The Imperative for Developing Critical and Creative Thinking Competencies in Postgraduate Design Education

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Design Education Research

Design education has an integral association with engaging both critical and creative thinking. While the previous critical cross-field outcomes explicitly fostered both critical and creative development (SAQA 2000), the newer level descriptors (SAQA 2012) focus almost exclusively on critical thinking. This could be because critical and creative thinking are often regarded as synonymous. Authors like Macat International Limited (2017) support this understanding by including creative thinking as a component of critical thinking, while other authors differentiate between the two concepts.

Negotiating Material Design Knowledge: Making through design research

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Design Education Research

My doctoral research critically explored design education in South African higher education through employing post-qualitative methodology. The research was approached from new materialist, posthuman theoretical perspectives. This implied that I set out to practise design research/education aimed at productive transformation in the institution that I work. I critically negotiated a range of individual experiences of being engaged in design/research/teaching in the Visual Communication Design curriculum at Stellenbosch University.

In Search of a Wisdom-Seeking Creative Research Approach: Intimacy, creativity and rasa

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Design Education Research

Despite the development of Practice-Led Research (PLR) to acknowledge the centrality of practice in the pursuit of research outcomes, the methodology still seems to be confined by the necessity to separate out the cognitive/conscious processes (of writing, for example) from the phenomenological and body/mind dynamics at play in the creative process. This confinement seems to be a product of duality or a binary research system as espoused in the West. The central thesis of this paper, therefore, is to attempt to demonstrate a potential strategy that circumvents or collapses this dichotomy. This paper sets a triadic relationship between/among practice-led research, Kasulis’ (2002) theorising of intimacy in understanding, and the eastern philosophy of Rasa, in the pursuit of wisdom.

Theory in Design Research: A supervisor reflection on research design

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Design Education Research
Graphic Design & Visual Art

This paper is a supervisor reflection on theory selection for research design in design-orientated research. Selection and deployment of theory in a research design can powerfully affect what design research achieves. The research design of a graphic design master’s dissertation targeting ‘research for design’ illustrates this. The view of research design discussed in the paper is not typological or logistical, but instead one where relations between research components are interactive and emergent during the course of the study.

Writing-up Research Through Design: An approach to research report writing in early level postgraduate education

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Design Education Research

In Christopher’s Frayling’s seminal account of design-orientated research, he lists research for design, research through design and research about design as the primary modes of research in the field of design. At least since Frayling termed these concepts in 1993, design educators globally have grappled with supervising research through design. While there are many accounts of research through design, few provide clear theory as to how the approach may be applied, least of all in design education. In the field of human-computer interaction, Zimmerman et al.

Towards a Pragmatic Code of Ethics for Design Research

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Design Education Research

Research ethics committees (RECs) at universities evaluate applications for ethical clearance through ethical research lenses shaped by positivist and interpretivist paradigms and cultural constructivist thinking. Such lenses predominantly follow reasoning strategies that could include inductive or deductive reasoning. Research ethics committees further interrogate applicants’ methodology and monitor their actions to determine whether they meet extant research ethics principles.

Nomads and Narratives: Navigating personal and professional literacies in design education

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Design Education Research

South African students in higher education face many challenges other than the requirements of the academic programme. This places additional demands on academic staff tasked with delivering specialised content in support of student success rates. In response, we have introduced a subject intended to support first-year design students in navigating studio and theory subjects in a trans-disciplinary way. This subject covers academic, personal and professional literacies. Personal and professional literacies are the subject of this investigation, in which we question how we can support students in preparation for fast-changing future environments?

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