Design Learning

Design Learning is a process of participatory inquiry; a learning process that interweaves Knowing, Doing, Making and Relating.

Design Learning is an inquiry based learning process that leverages the participatory nature of communicative interaction between people. Learning emerges as thematic patterns of meaning or Knowing in the ongoing relating between those involved in such an inquiry: Relating. Design Learning combines design processes, methods, tools and interventions with that of participatory inquiry. In this regard learning is also considered as understanding in practice and as situated in the practice of Doing and Making.

As such, Design Learning is a collaborative, project oriented and practice based process of inquiry, driven by action research that engages both faculty and students in a co-generative and co-learning research endeavour. This form of learning enables students to bring theory acquired through more traditional lecturing or analysis based learning into play with the theory and skills they discover through their own practice. As students pursue their inquiry from experiment to experiment they learn to engage, direct and reflect on their learning and on the social dimensions of working with others, as they navigate the highly contingent, dynamic and emergent flux of an innovation or design task, or simply a field of inquiry. A field of inquiry that can either be used to explore the analysis of research phenomena or to enable the development of concepts and solutions for open ended collaborative design or participatory innovation tasks.

Contact: Chris Heape,

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