MODELMAKING IN UNIVERSITY LEARNING OF INDUSTRIAL DESIGN. CHANGES IN TEACHING METHODOLOGIES TO IMPROVE STUDENTS’ HANDLING SKILLS USING TOOLS AND MATERIALS

The compulsory subject 'Modelmaking Workshop' is taught in the Degree in Industrial Design and Product Development of the Universitat Jaume I. This is a highly practical course in which students learn different techniques to carry out their own designs as experimental models. The last course some major shortcomings were detected in students related to manipulating expression materials (wood, cardboard, plastic and metal) as well as in handling the specialized equipment in the workshops (sanders, drills, saws and welders). Students found it difficult to carry out the first practices because they lacked the necessary basis, and underperformed because they were more attentive to become familiar with the materials and tools than to shape their proposals.
This paper presents the methodologies and results of an educational improvement project funded through Educational Support Unit (USE) in Universitat Jaume I (Castellón). The aim was to accelerate the students’ acquisition of handling skills of materials and familiarization with the working environment in the workshops through some practical activities (autonomous learning with teacher monitoring). The positive results obtained made it possible to better respond to subsequent advanced exercises.