BAU, Centro Universitario de Diseño (University of Vic) (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2014 Proceedings
Publication year: 2014
Pages: 7350-7354
ISBN: 978-84-616-8412-0
ISSN: 2340-1079
Conference name: 8th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 10-12 March, 2014
Location: Valencia, Spain
Applying the Bologna Process, we have created a new learning system for design. We have done so, on one hand, taking in consideration the proposals put forward by the European Higher Education Area (EHEA), on the other acknowledging our own insights on the role of the designer in his or her social, economic and cultural context.

We consider the designer as an active agent capable of providing solutions to the needs of enterprises and individuals. Doing so, the designer is contributing to produce social and cultural transformations, from a critical perspective, a proactive standpoint and with ethical responsibility.

The designer will be a person who displays great humanistic and technological knowledge. A social researcher. A creative subject, having a responsible practice in line with the principals that underlie universal and sustainable design. Analytical observer and participant of the changes taken place in communications and IT sectors but also of the social and economic downturn taken place during the 21st century, a designer needs to develop the tools and skills to navigate these changes with resilience and leadership.

It is in this context that we introduce an experimental learning model aimed at defining design methodologies based on active learning pedagogy. Students propose their own design projects based on researching instrumental and social conditions. This model is based on four core knowledge realms: culture, society, communication and innovation.

This methodology we use to work on design takes into account the students' interests in the four areas described. This allows them to provide design solutions for the needs of an ever changing society. This new curriculum integrates four different curricular pathways: fashion, graphic design, interior decoration and new media. The specificity of the different languages works under the needs and ideas put forward by the student, who becomes the main leader in his or her learning, and ultimate responsible for the creative process.

Students propose design projects after conducting social and instrumental research introduced by cinema. These are infused with a critical perspective and different project methodologies allowing them to achieve professional results much in line with what has been branded as Design Thinking.

We consider the designer as a professional that can have an impact in different work spheres. A mediator and creative agent able to provoke qualitative changes in a business environment but also in a wider society. In this sense, the aim of learning in nothing else that to train these designers.
Active learning pedagogy, university, design, methodology, social research, ICT.