i have written and tried many collaborative design approaches within a university setting. some of my experiments and documents are collected here, free to be used. i want to hear your stories as well!
quick, timed, in-class exercise that forces students to experiment with unexpected stylistic treatments by building on, and remixing each other’s solutions.
Exercises in Style
typographic equivalent of raymond queneau’s 99 linguistic adaptations of the same story. students collectively compile a process book of type studies in a single class period.
stepping away from personal work and allowing a peer to take the helm, helps recharge the brain and allow discovery of new design processes and solutions. this exercise can be used in conjunction with any larger project.
as a reflection of design reality, it’s necessary to introduce group dynamics in the first year program.
Large-scale projects with multiple components mitigate egos and promote horizontal distribution of labor.
an entire class takes a semester to author, design, and produce a handbook responding to the prompt: how can designers fix a broken american culture? with too many chefs in the kitchen, a narrow time span, minimal intervention from the instructor, and conflicting opinions on the content, students learn to combat “design by committee” and solve flexible art direction through baptism by fire.
instead of jumping into code, understanding human-to-human communication is necessary before mediating it. this assignment addresses interactivity v. connectivity.
Time in Space
due to its time and labor–consuming nature, video and motion graphics naturally require multiple hands. the first option collides two students’ individual projects and the second option bucks jer thorp and edward tufte in favor of more tangible data.
in lieu of process books, juniors are asked to critically evaluate their relationship or interest with design by candidly talking to a peer and manifestering their ideas in the form of dichotomies.
grappling with the knowledge that students don’t read/buy textbooks and tests prove nothing, potluck-style lectures require everyone’s attention and involvement. open convos are stickier and more fun than a professorial drone.