Designer's identity: Development of personal attributes and design skills over education

DS 87-8 Proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED 17) Vol 8: Human Behaviour in Design, Vancouver, Canada, 21-25.08.2017

Year: 2017
Editor: Anja Maier, Stanko Škec, Harrison Kim, Michael Kokkolaras, Josef Oehmen, Georges Fadel, Filippo Salustri, Mike Van der Loos
Author: Kunrath, Kamila; Cash, Philip; Li-Ying, Jason
Series: ICED
Institution: Technical University of Denmark, Denmark
Section: Human Behaviour in Design
Page(s): 419-428
ISBN: 978-1-904670-96-4
ISSN: 2220-4342


Designers’ Professional identity (DPI) is a social- and self-perceptive construct through which designers are able to identify themselves. To understand the development of DPI, not just as a profession but also as an educational process, there is a need to consider the designer as both individual and trained professional. These interactions become also a necessary foundation for professionalism that is especially important for design activity. For this study, a psychometric survey was developed by taking in consideration both aspects of DPI, making use of a set of elements distilled from literature as conceptual parameters for Personal Attributes and Design Skills. The survey evaluated professional self-awareness of design students at bachelor and master level; also providing a first profile model of the two groups. The dynamics of the relations between the DPI elements changes and develops very slowly due to the process of identity consolidation over the educational period. Further, DPI consolidates through a lifelong learning process. These results provide an initial insight into the development of DPI and the challenges of measuring this subjective aspect over education.

Keywords: Designer identity, Design education, Human behaviour in design, Knowledge management, Design learning


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