Presenting the 2013 MiD thesis projects from our most recent cohort of degree candidates. Please explore this impressive work below and let us know what you think — we welcome feedback on our work in the program.
Truss: A Design & Education Partnership
Kelly Babcock & Alex Visconti
Truss is a model for partnership between university design students and public high school teachers to use design thinking and design process as a framework for teaching 21st Century skills (what we will refer to as de- sign-based learning).
The question we asked ourselves when beginning this thesis was how can we, as de- signers, support forward thinking teachers who want to engage in an alternative way of teaching. Can classroom instruction be improved without extensive re-education and re-tooling of teachers? Our goal was to employ design in lesson-plan building for teach- ers interested in 21st Century skill development. We did this through collaborating with a teacher to use design methods and skills in planning lessons. In order to examine the relationships and effectiveness of the roles, we had to implement a design-based learn- ing project with the class. The result of this collaboration, design-based learning project and research is an informed model for the development of a partnership between design students at a university level and public school teachers.
Sustaining Organizational Culture Change
Medical centers are exploring for new methods of problem solving as they confront a vastly changing landscape. How can these new methods become part of an already established culture? My goal was to provide support between workshops that introduce innovation and the application of the learning. I created a role to support a team of healthcare employees as they applied innovation to their work. The results from this work not only reveal a strategy to strengthen the application of learning beyond the workshop, but it also provides a method for designers to improve the way they develop concepts with their clients.
Designing Social Practice Engagement
Social Practice is an increasingly prevalent approach for artists to engage with communities in order to create a desired social impact. However, as Social Practice is attracting more artists, the engagement with local communities can lead to outreach anxiety, especially for those who are more familiar with studio artwork.
In addressing this anxiety, my goal as a designer was to develop a Community Engagement Toolkit to support emerging artists in their research and engagement processes. By working with the Social Practice Lab at the Asian Arts Initiative in Philadelphia, I designed several research and engagement tools to investigate both the Chinatown community and the current artists-in- residence.
This thesis presents a design contribution that serves as a creative response to the issues in the practical case study and those faced by the Social Practice Artists. The resulting Toolkit was shared with artists, multi-disciplinary designers, and program organizers to provide options to facilitate the work of these participants. This thesis also highlights similarities between Human Centered Design and Social Practice, two areas which potentially could collaborate creatively, and build on each other’s strengths.
Enhancing Entrepreneurial Learning
The focus of this thesis is to enhance entrepreneurial learning by designing a system that filters, sorts, matches, and tracks entrepreneurs with the right mentors. These mentors are matched based upon the domain of the startup, their role (marketing, tech, finance, business development, etc.), the types of problems they find interesting, industry experience, and the amount of time available.
In order to design such a system, it is necessary to generate a model that describes the interaction between mentor and entrepreneur. The structure of interaction uncovered by this thesis has three phases: pre-meeting, meeting, and follow-up. By incorporating pieces of the digital world into the pre-meeting and the follow-up, the designed system ensures two key aspects. The first, the entrepreneur receives focused, relevant, and strategic advice regarding their business. The second, the mentor knows the outcome of the meeting ahead of time, the history of the entrepreneur, and where the entrepreneur needs strategic advice. These two key points enhances the meeting phase, where knowledge and experience is transferred from mentor to entrepreneur.
Meghan Conley & Lonnie Petersheim
The citizens of the Kensington area of Philadelphia are fragmented and feel disenfranchised when faced with taking responsibility and ownership of their neighborhoods in order to become catalysts for change. By restructuring the way community meetings were conducted, our goal was empower a local civic association to create a platform where meaningful discussion could take place in order to create a sense of connectedness and inspire action. We designed an engagement where residents could both begin a conversation and co-create solutions around the topic of safety within their neighborhood.
Breaking Cultural & Communication Barriers
Daeun Song & Charles H.
International and American students often work side by side in American Universities without engaging in ways that reduce the cultural barriers that separate them. Our goal was to open up understanding and ease tensions experienced by students in globally integrated American classrooms.
Our method included working with students and faculty at the University of the Arts. We conducted observations, interviews, held workshops and tested tools and methods for classroom use.
As a result we created a system to be used in the classroom that helps make faculty and students understand better differences in behavior on the part of international students from Asia.2013 MiD Thesis Projects
This entry was posted on Thursday, July 11th, 2013 at 7:13 pm by azahn123.