Design for Learning - A New Degree Course

Nigel Hall, Robin Lord
1983, Vol. 15, No. 2,


It is fairly common practice for subject experts, with or without teaching experience, to be responsible for the planning of teaching methods, the selection of media, the role of the media, and the actual writing of the materials. Such work requires knowledge and creative ability with communication, teaching methods and media; none of which may be part of the subject expert's qualifications.

It is equally common for the designer working in education to be unfamiliar with the various educational considerations inherent in the work they are doing.

In the field of education, interpretation, and training there is a need for people who can combine analytical abilities and knowledge of educational concepts with imagination and vision in design. Such people could make very effective contributions, both to the planning and writing of teaching materials and to the physical designing of them.

There are very few designers like this. A national survey (Wright 1973) showed considerable need for people able to combine creative ability in design with a sensitive awareness of the conditions which lead to learning. The 'Design for Learning' course at Manchester Polytechnic was developed to educate such people.

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