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Studio Teaching in the Low-Precedent Context of Instructional Design


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Instructional design (ID) has been a scientized field of design for half a century, which means that models and principles have been emphasized in ID education over other forms of design knowledge, including precedent. In the study of design broadly defined, precedent is well established as a form of knowledge essential to competent practice. It is plentiful and made available through multiple channels, by practitioners as well as educators. This 7-year study examines the challenges for students in learning to recognize, appreciate and use precedent in designing images to support learning. These include the need to develop analogical thinking related to the use of precedent in their own work, to recognize precedents they already use without explicit awareness, to attend to precedent and seek it independent of its immediate use. Methods used in the studio course under study are discussed, together with examples of students' design activities at each stage in the evolution of the course. Data for this study comprise detailed field notes from each class period, student work, and reflections assigned as part of the regular class assignments.

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Studio Teaching in the Low-Precedent Context of Instructional Design

  1. 1. Studio Teaching in the Low-Precedent Context of Instructional Design Elizabeth Boling, Indiana University Colin M. Gray, Iowa State University Kennon M. Smith, Indiana University LearnxDesign2015, Chicago, IL
  2. 2. Background studio signature pedagogy is enacted in many traditional art and design disciplines critical role of precedent in studio education (CIDA, 2014; NAAB, 2014; e.g. Clark & Pause, 2012) definition of precedent as used in this study … not restricted to a disciplinary canon, or historical works taught as exemplars unbounded experience (direct or vicarious) put to use in the moment of designing teaching studio in an emergent design discipline (instructional design and technology [IDT]) without tradition of precedent building
  3. 3. Philosophical Context: IDT as Science and/ or Design? traditional characterizations of IDT have emphasized links with science (e.g., Merrill et al., 1996) and models have been represented as a primary form of knowledge building (Branch, 2009; Richey, Klein, & Tracey, 2011) the emergent view that IDT shares many concerns and characteristics of design fields raises concern that some of the critical practices supporting design are absent in the field the use of precedent is one of those critical practices
  4. 4. Questions When an educator in IDT collects and curates precedent materials to support student learning, how do those students experience this precedent? how do the students encounter precedent? how do they recognize it, seek and use it how do they discuss its role in their projects when asked to do so?
  5. 5. Context of the Study intensive, graduate-level studio course in instructional graphics design offered within an IDT program – summer elective course course design has evolved over ten years with classic studio features established for 5 years physical resources for the studio (compared to typical IDT classroom)
  6. 6. Context of the Study 2014 course assignments Draw 100 Things Instructional Book Precedent Paper
  7. 7. Context of the Study 2014 course assignments Draw 100 Things Instructional Book Precedent Paper
  8. 8. Context of the Study 2014 course assignments Draw 100 Things Instructional Book Precedent Paper
  9. 9. Method Participants: 2014: 9 students all studies (n=75) Data Sources primary: 2014 field notes and precedent papers secondary: previous field notes and analyses Data Analysis descriptive analysis thematic analysis
  10. 10. Findings & Discussion as in previous iterations of the course, students encountered, but did not recognize the precedent materials in the room on their own; they noticed it when – the instructor pointed out relevant work on the walls or selected books from the shelves and brought it to the work tables the instructor encouraged them to seek visual precedent outside the classroom, including offering advice on where it might be found students were largely unaware of precedents they were using and found it difficult to discuss its role in their projects students first considered their process moves to be precedent they required significant prompting or questions from the instructor to identify precedents that they actually were using students made both immediate and analogic use of precedent direct/immediate use was most available to them for reflection most made progress in understanding analogic use
  11. 11. Unconscious analogic use Cecil’s side-by-side visual reflection regarding the influence he perceives on his image from a comic style he has enjoyed previously. • with prompting, Cecil was able to connect his lived experience of the visual world to the moves he was making in depicting objects
  12. 12. Unconscious direct use Hana presented a craft book instruction she has used previously as an example of the visual strategies she has adopted in her own images on the right. • Hana made direct use of precedent, evident to the instructor from her expressed background and interests, but surprising to her until the connection was suggested to her.
  13. 13. Conscious direct use Aaron used the Dog Owner’s Handbook as a direct model for his visual representation throughout the instructional booklet he created. • Aaron exemplified direct, linear and conscious use of precedent. He went looking for a model to use, made adjustments as he went, and by the end of class was able to articulate how he might use additional sources of precedent.
  14. 14. Conscious analogic use The nine-patch quilt design suggested to Bodhi as providing an analogic possibility for the structure of a display, drawing many small images together into one composition. • Bodhi perceived the “small squares” nature of a quilt suggested to her as a compositional example, and adapted this visual quality to her poster with multiple contextual adjustments.
  15. 15. Conscious analogic use Terry’s image (left) shows the line quality he applied to his illustrations after noting it in text from a children’s science magazine. Chen’s image (right) combined photographic environments and people with drawn objects, adapted from a technique he had seen that combined photographic environments with sketched people. • Two students with some design experience prior to this course were both proactive and analogic in their use of precedent, although neither was fully independent in this use or fluent in their discussion of it.
  16. 16. Conclusion a precedent-rich learning environment is not sufficient on its own— students have to learn: what the environment is for how to use the environment effectively how the environment in the studio relates to precedent use outside the studio findings may inform the approaches used to incorporate designerly perspectives (including the use of precedent) in IDT pedagogy and in other fields
  17. 17. References Branch, R. M. (2009). Instructional design: The ADDIE approach. Boston, MA: Springer-Verlag. Clark, R.H., & Pause, M. (2012). Precedents in architecture: Analytic diagrams, formative ideas, and partis (4th ed). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA). (2014). Professional standards 2014. content/uploads/2015/02/Professional-Standards-2014.pdf Merrill, M. D., Drake, L., Lacy, M. J., Pratt, J., and the ID2 Research Group. (1996). Reclaiming instructional design. Educational Technology, 36(5), 5-7. National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). (2014). 2014 Conditions for accreditation. Available for download at: Richey, R., Klein, J. D., & Tracey, M. W. (2011). The instructional design knowledge base: Theory, research, and practice. New York, NY: Routledge.