Research:

Authours: Emilie Brancato, Nancy Snow, Saskia van Kampen
Abstract
Design studio pedagogies challenge our assumptions about how, when, and why students write in ways that align well with language learning pedagogies. This roundtable will be framed around notions of collaboration and the intersection of writing  and making discovered while introducing WAC practices into first-year studio courses.

Our pilot study revealed that our collaboration was not limited to faculty and writing specialist. The not-so-overt collaborator are the students through... more

Abstract
First-year design studio courses should be process driven in order to promote multiple idea development, risk taking, and exploration. However, in order to demonstrate the importance of process, feedback, and iteration this process needs to be documented and marked throughout the duration of an assignment. Therefore, I have designed my assignments to include a progress book format in which students are asked to record everything they have undergone weekly—including observational, and theoretical research, trials and errors, feedback, exploration, etc. The... more

This was a talk that I gave at the Material Innovation Centre at OCAD University about my personal making processes and the materials which I use. Below is a small piece of my talk.

There is much talk in our fields about what materials should be used. There are economical, stability, durability, aesthetic and sustainability issues that need to be factored into the decisions that we make. What is sometimes overlooked is how the materials we use communicate meaning through the ways we physically work with them, how their meanings shift depending on the context within which they are... more

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Authors: Nancy Snow and Saskia van Kampen
Abstract
Purposeful writing activities that are integrated into making processes of studio curriculum not only bolster student learning but also contribute to more robust project outcomes. A pilot study conducted in first-year-design studios at OCAD University supported the generation of various techniques to specifically and clearly: augment the learning outcomes of projects, foster discipline-specific language learning, and build information gathering skills. Furthermore, as professor of school library studies... more

Authors: Nancy Snow and Saskia van Kampen
Abstract
Our first-year studio pedagogy augments style- and craft-based teaching approaches in order to prepare students for a future of design that considers complexity and interacting systems beyond those that directly relate to producing services or products.  It is our belief that comprehensive skills in thinking and making allow an individual to make better informed decisions.  First-year studio classes should be where design is demonstrated as more than enhancing content visually.  Design framed as... more

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Authors: Emilie Brancato, Nancy Snow & Saskia van Kampen
Abstract
This poster highlights the preliminary findings of a Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) pilot project in design education exploring how the design concept of iteration—understood as a practice including research, (re)drafting, reflecting and revising—fosters critical engagement in the first-year Graphic Design classroom.  Critical engagement and discourse are fundamental to the process of transformative learning (Mezirow, 2003; Cranton, 2006). They are also fundamental to the process... more

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Authors: Nancy Snow & Saskia van Kampen
Abstract
In first year, the design educator’s role is to prepare beginning design students for their undergraduate experience and beyond. We will be discussing a study currently underway that investigates a course’s assignments that focus on research methods and levels of critical engagement in first year design students. We will also discuss how certain components are structured in order to stimulate autonomous learning. This is essential to us in graphic design at OCAD University as our approach to... more

Author: Nancy Snow & Saskia van Kampen
Abstract
Beginning design students regularly struggle to articulate their intent and decision-making regarding the work they produce. This is often demonstrated through students’ naive engagement in iterative processes, simplistic articulation of concept, and ingenuous criticality when critiquing the work of their peers. Can a more holistic inclusion of writing into design process help students engage more critically with work they make and help them to engage in more purposeful critiquing of their peers’ work?... more

Author: Saskia van Kampen
Abstract
The complex nature of visual culture demands that designers, design students as well as design instructors engage both on a theoretical and practical level with their design practice in order to stay current, avoid complacency and develop innovative ways of seeing and functioning. Theory and practice must work together and inform each other (Schön, 37). However, practical knowledge is often deemed inferior to theoretical knowledge, leading to a focus on the latter within the classroom environment. The divide between... more

Author: Saskia van Kampen

This thesis paper examines how handcraft (making an item by analog means using specific materials) can be a compelling rhetorical tool for graphic designers to harness. Contrasting handcraft techniques with computer graphics software “unsettles” rote graphic design practices. The meaning that lies in the physical act of making, the materials that are used and the contexts with which particular handcrafts are associated can support, as well as carry, visual rhetoric in design works. 

An... more

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