RESEARCH-BASED APPROACHES IN INTERIOR ARCHITECTURE EDUCATION
Izmir University of Economics (TURKEY)
About this paper:
Conference name: 14th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 2-4 March, 2020
Location: Valencia, Spain
Abstract:This paper discusses the combination of technological developments and research-based approaches in an interior architecture education. The paper focuses on the Environment-Behavior Studies (EBS) course in the department of Interior Architecture and Environmental Design at Izmir University of Economics, Turkey. The undergraduate course aims to create awareness in students about the relationship between human beings and their physical and social environments. Students learn to understand human behavior based on EBS theory and practice examples, and to question the design decisions in their environment, as well as their own. Within the scope of the course, students are expected to design and complete an EBS research study and to apply their technological knowledge to suggest improvements to the research area. This paper displays three group projects that focus on environment-behavior issues, namely, an assessment of the coastline through the use of biophilic design principles; evaluation of a kindergarten learning environment through the use of the cognitive maps drawn by children, and the assessment of privacy and territoriality issues in a dormitory for university students. Although there is variation in terms of subject matter and scale, the students’ approach to each project showed developed knowledge in interior architecture, the environment-behavior field, and design skills. The group projects were assessed through students’ reports, presentations at the university, and project posters over 100 points according to the success in forming the research structure, use of EBS background, creation of design guidelines driven by EBS research, and application to design through the use of appropriate software. Moreover, the progress of students taking this course were further followed in their upper years through interviews on their design studio and thesis courses. Findings of the research study indicated that students’ sensitivity and design decisions were highly and positively influenced by the EBS background they received and that they could transfer this knowledge to their designs through technology with considerable ease. The goal is to help students to become better interior architects, more in touch with human behavior, and among others, the physical, social, and ecological needs of the environment. The creation and representation of design ideas through developing technology is also of critical importance for the education of interior architects who are in touch with advancements of today, designing for the future.
Keywords: Interior design, interior architecture education, research-based education, environment-behavior studies.