ALIGNING TEACHING AND LEARNING APPROACHES AND ASSESSMENT METHODS TO ENHANCE THE QUALITY OF HIGHER DESIGN EDUCATION
Liverpool John Moores University (UNITED KINGDOM)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2015 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Conference name: 9th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 2-4 March, 2015
Location: Madrid, Spain
Abstract:The design of modern higher education programmes in the field of industrial and product design must strive to meet the career expectations of both employers and students. How educators attempt to match the expectations of both students and industry is of critical importance to the knowledge-driven UK economy.
Recent research indicates that skills, knowledge and creativity (SKC) are equally important for both seasoned designers and graduates alike (Guo, 2011). These attributes are important, but not enough; the ability to manage, liaise with clients and apply real-world experiences are required by most employers (Zerillo, 2005). There is, however, a mismatch between employer’s expectations and the abilities of graduate students in a number of areas. In fact a staggering 21% of UK-based design consultancies said they were 'not at all satisfied' with the skills of the graduates they were employing in the areas of design skills, literacy, mathematical ability and, perhaps most importantly, business awareness.
Teaching is the delivery or transmission of information/knowledge to facilitate students’ learning through growth or by changing their conceptions of the subject matter. This is done by a number of established teaching paradigms and learning models (Fox, 1983; Martin, 1990; Dall’ Alba, 1990; Samuelowicz and Bain, 1992). The teaching and learning methods employed at university levels 4 and 5 (years 1 and 2) are often rote and peer-based communication models as delivered in most secondary schools. In the final year of a degree, the teaching and learning style is often more aligned with the self-directed method, giving students greater freedom to select their preferred direction and equipping themselves to meet the requirements and needs of industry.
The method of assessment plays a significant role in a student’s education: many students tend to place great emphasis on passing a module without first seeking to understand the content. Intelligent selection of assessment method is therefore critical in ensuring students are strategically steered towards learning the new skills and knowledge laid out in the syllabus.
This paper shows that both the teaching and learning approach and the method of assessment method are of equal importance in curriculum/module design. Furthermore a roadmap, an idealized “learners journey” is presented for studies at the higher educational level. This model is considers student aspirations, university/HEIs’ curriculum design, skills expected of students to fulfil career goals and the needs of the product and industrial design industries.
Keywords: Design, Design Education, product design, industrial design, pedagogy, teaching & learning methods.