DS 88: Proceedings of the 19th International Conference on Engineering and Product Design Education (E&PDE17), Building Community: Design Education for a Sustainable Future, Oslo, Norway, 7 & 8 September 2017

Year: 2017
Editor: Berg, Arild; Bohemia, Erik; Buck, Lyndon; Gulden, Tore; Kovacevic, Ahmed; Pavel, Nenad
Author: Seiersten, Nils; Berg, Arild
Series: E&PDE
Institution: Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences, Norway
Section: Design Education Practice
Page(s): 050-055
ISBN: 978-1-904670-84-1


In the process of work life, product designers are expected to master and use digital tools. This must therefore be integrated in teaching in a pedagogically appropriate manner. Research has shown that there are many students who do not use digital tools despite having been trained in digital programmes. According to Donald Schøn, who has studied reflective practice among professionals, it represents a general challenge for interdisciplinary processes that the terminology used is so advanced that it reduces communication across groups. The purpose of this paper is to elaborate on Vygotsky’s theoretical notion of a ‘zone of proximal development’ (ZPD), whereby learning is supported by doing things together. The research question in this study was therefore how to develop a creative zone of proximal development that bridges the gap between manual product design and digital tools. The methods used were based on learning in communities of practice where the teacher and student work together. By showing the working process, the goal of the teacher was to demystify the development process and demonstrate how various tools can be used in a way that was useful and that saved time. Some students worked with CNC milling, pairing 3D print in polymeric materials, 3D print in ceramics and additive manufacturing. The approach can help students in a playful and more informal approach to the process in which they can learn the creative dynamics between digital tools and the physical world.

Keywords: Tools, Illusion, Demystify


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