STRATEGIES IN DESIGN EDUCATION INTEGRATING THEORY AND PRACTICE TO FACILITATE REMOTE INDIGENOUS PARTICIPATION IN HIGHER EDUCATION

S. Gluth

Charles Darwin University (AUSTRALIA)
This paper sets out an approach to generate effective pathways in design education to engage Australian Aboriginal students living in remote regions in higher education, which they currently don't see as part of their cultural expectations. This approach will develop unique design principles that allow the students to draw on their own visual/spatial understanding of their relationship to the landscape which permeates into their aesthetics and design thinking and visual decision making. Furthermore it will bring forth a new methodological approach which will be developed through my research.

Many designers and business leaders, have strongly advocated the value to business and industry of 'design thinking', while others point out that design goes beyond the 'mere' economic or commercial advantages implied in this approach which, however, disregards the cultural significance design affords.

Further, such an approach which provides a more culturally focused knowledge of the potential for design principles would have an obvious attraction for Australian Aboriginal students from remote communities to university education in design.

But it will also afford a unique design style coming out of Australia.

I will therefore set out in my paper strategies that I have developed for the successful integration of design history and 'theory' with design practice, which I have found to be the most successful with a broad range of students and then problematize this experience and the demonstrate why a new approach is needed for students living in the unique landscape which is found in remote Australia.