Optimizing Relations Between Making and Thinking
Stephen Temple, Assistant Professor | University of Texas, San Antonio
It must be conveyed to beginning design students that designing occurs not simply due to an inspired moment but as a result of rigorous transformative interactions between thinking and making in which concepts are discovered and transformed and finally realized in concrete form. To initiate this attitude and practice in introductory design studios, a fundamental difficulty must be overcome. Encountering the abstractness of design thinking is frequently problematic for students new to design. Attempting to work abstractly causes a distancing and disengagement from actuality that frequently fosters reliance on preconceptions or known solutions, rather than through explorations and discoveries of their own volition. Fully engaging initial learning experiences are crucial for new design students because they structure future learning paradigms. Deep fundamental initial queries are necessarily personally transforming and form the body of an inquiry base for future learning activities. Initial learning experiences, therefore, must grab hold and challenge beyond mere behavior patterns or internal experience and must connect personally to a student’s experiential life, their thoughts, ideas, dreams, and consciousness, while realizing external consequence within a larger and very tangible world.