Some much needed insights on design education (in this special issue).
“I am not inclined, for several reasons, to believe there are straightforward goals for educators seeking to shape the designer of 2025. The embedded assumption that there are broad similarities among designers is my first worry. I don’t just believe that differences are inevitable—I believe in the value of diversity in individual experience and individual points of view. I see thinking through making as vital in my little corner of design, and as valuable resource for educators in general. Thinking through making—once a common way of approaching the world—has largely disappeared, but art and design programs would do well to preserve this important approach. (…) To some extent, the popularity of design thinking has demonstrated the value of a variety of thinking through making. Much of the conversation around design thinking assumes that the future of design is in the tackling of larger, more complex, and often immaterial tasks. While I embrace that, I wonder whether moves toward larger, more complex, often immaterial projects as the center of undergraduate training undermines the learning of the sort of skills we hope designers have.”