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From Ideas to Acts

A report from Min Yeh, Fall 2014 DSI post-graduate fellow

Fall 2014 DSI Post-graduate Fellow Min Wen Yeh spent the last several months building upon the work of her thesis project, The Bridge, which addresses design tools and methods for cross-cultural interaction and group collaboration. Her thesis project included a toolkit for students bridging highly motivated mindsets to positive cultural adaptation behaviors. During the Fellowship, Min further developed the thesis work through designing and testing educational tools in the ESLI program at UArts, and built a conceptual / behavioral / pedagogical model.

To explore Min’s project in more detail, see the final documentation, Leading Ideas to Acts, as well as the facilitation guide and tools she developed, My Journey Maps.

The Design for Social Impact Post-graduate Fellowship provides exceptional graduates of the program the opportunity to implement and measure the impact of their thesis work as applied within the Philadelphia community. Additionally, the Fellow will make a significant contribution to the graduate program by serving as a mentor to current students and promoting the work of the program in support of our recruitment efforts.

Min Yeh’s fellowship was generously sponsored by the Design for Social Impact MDes graduate program, the Office of the Provost, and International Student Programs at The University of the Arts.

From Ideas to Acts
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This entry was posted on Tuesday, March 17th, 2015 at 12:00 pm by Jeremy Beaudry.
Recent MID Grads Kelly Babcock & Alex Visconti Will Present at ‘Design-Ed Future 2013’

Recent alumnae Kelly Babcock MID ‘13 (Industrial Design) and Alex Visconti MID ‘13 (Industrial Design) will present their thesis work “Truss: A Partnership for Design and Education” at “Design-Ed Future 2013: Design Education Conference” being held June 28 and 29 at the University of the Arts. The presentation will take place during the Design-Ed Future’s “unconference” segment on Friday, June 28 from 3:00-4:30pm.

During the first year of their studies, Babcock and Visconti explored the world of alternative learning spaces through their work with YouthBuild Charter School, a vocational charter school for high school dropouts, and the Free Library of Philadelphia teen services. They employed design research methods, such as ethnographic observation and interviewing as well as generative participatory activities, to gain a deep understanding of issues such as chronic low attendance, and how to build programming and physical spaces for young adults.

This experience naturally led them to focus their thesis work within public, secondary education. “Truss: A Partnership for Design and Education” outlines a model for partnership between university design students and public school teachers to support the implementation and sustainability of design-based learning.

It tells the story of Babcock and Visconti’s own experience working with a principal intern/American history teacher at the Franklin Learning Center, a high school in the Philadelphia public school system, where they implemented a design-based learning project to build 21st century skills in a class of junior students.

This experience provided the opportunity to outline the roles, responsibilities and relationships between the design student and public school teacher. Through this innovative model for partnership, they hope to alleviate some of the main stresses or obstacles teachers face when implementing a new way of teaching.

Babcock and Visconti will be speaking about their experience as designers in the classroom, and will be focusing their discussion on the five things they found to be most influential in shaping the roles and relationship between the university design student and the teacher. These key learnings include lesson and activity planning, direct instruction and facilitation, building creative confidence, assessment of understanding, and organizing reflection.

Their presentation will be followed by time for Q&A and discussion.

Recent MID Grads Kelly Babcock & Alex Visconti Will Present at ‘Design-Ed Future 2013’
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This entry was posted on Thursday, June 27th, 2013 at 11:32 am by azahn123.
MiD Alumni Q&A

2010 Alumni Q&A

A few nights ago now some of the first alumni of the reframed MiD program returned to tell us of what it’s like on the outside. Frasier, Rachel, Garreth and Justin as well as a recruiter from MissionStaff named Megan Metz told us of their trials and conquests from the job hunt to their present projects. After which they fielded questions mostly from the trepidatious second-years who are finalizing their theses and beginning the interviewing process.

It was interesting to discover that though we are learning a human centered design process here, most of these graduates worked in a field labeled User Experience. While there did seem to be differences between these two labels, it was not clear exactly what these were. Axure, a software for wireframing and development, seemed to be the tool of choice for many aspects of their new jobs. The fact that there are many aspects to their new positions should also be noted. The graduates seemed to transcend this label pure user experience designer to step into multiple roles including research, information architecture, strategy and more.

Overall the night was a success. Many of the current MiD students were in attendance joined with a few undergrads and fellow professors. It provided an interesting look at the developing creative environment we here are all preparing to enter. Discovering consistencies between their separate positions most of us now have a better idea of what to expect come graduation and how to craft our stories to market ourselves more directly to applicable positions.

The night ended positively with a lot of eager conversations and new connections; everyone seemed excited.

MiD Alumni Q&A
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This entry was posted on Sunday, April 10th, 2011 at 4:35 pm by azahn123.