Design education in transition: A multidisciplinary design classroom with non-allied disciplines

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Fleischmann, Katja
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2022
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Abstract

The complex inter-relationships in the world, driven by technological breakthroughs, are prompting design educators to look for new ways to structure their courses to embrace expanding skill sets. Four critical areas to advance design education are highlighted: keeping up with technological advancements; teaching design as a participatory process; using a systems view to analyse problems; and facilitating student learning in a multidisciplinary collaborative environment. One of the key requirements of the design profession is collaboration among a wide variety of stakeholders who may reside well outside the scope of the designer’s sphere of influence. If one accepts the premise that today’s design student can no longer be confined by a narrow problem solving skill set, then academic institutional barriers have to be crossed in a collaborative way between seemingly incongruous academic disciplines. A sustainable model of multidisciplinary collaboration at the undergraduate level is reviewed and the potential of expanding that collaboration is explored through detailed interviews with five non-design academics at an Australian university. The research presents opportunities and challenges perceived by academic staff to connect fields such as law, business, tourism and design as a testing ground to educate designers to better understand the complexities of today’s design problems.

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The Design Journal
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This is an Author's Accepted Manuscript of an article published in The Design Journal, 25 (1), pp. 25-43, 2022, copyright Taylor & Francis, available online at: https://doi.org/10.1080/14606925.2021.2004717
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Design practice and methods
Creative arts, media and communication curriculum and pedagogy
Arts & Humanities
Art
Design education
multidisciplinary collaboration
participatory design practice
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Fleischmann, K, Design education in transition: A multidisciplinary design classroom with non-allied disciplines, The Design Journal, 2022, 25 (1), pp. 25-43
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