I’d like to ask for some input to improve design education. I teach industrial design in Delft, where I’m mainly involved in the big design projects of our Bachelor’s course. And as I’ve been doing that for a number of years, I’m getting a little bit frustrated with the fact that there are a number of questions or subjects that all my students struggle with at some point, but for which there don’t seem to be clear and concise discussions of the relevant theory I can point them to. So I’ve decided to try and write a set of those articles myself, to hand out at the exact moment a student is struggling with some subject. I’m aiming at less than a 1000 words plus some clear images and examples.
So, my question here is this: are there things that you struggle with or remember struggling with in the early years of design school that you feel should be the subject for one of these? And do you think it would help to have a little booklet, pdf or post somewhere that your teacher could point you to? I’m thinking more in the realm of theoretical concepts than skills.
Two examples of the sort of thing I get asked a lot:
- What is a concept? And why on earth do you guys keep asking me to come up with three of 'em, when I already have a solution?
- How can I justify my choice for a certain concept or design? What are the ways in which to say a design is ‘good’ without it being completely subjective?
Now, I know that most of design isn’t something you learn from a book. But I do think that there are some important theoretical points that my students could benefit from having explained clearly, in a format that they can take away after we’ve talked it over in person.
I’d love to read your thoughts.