Using writing as a cognitive tool in a car design project
Other conference contribution, 2008
The purpose of this paper is to give a short overview of a successful attempt at integrating communicative skills and disciplinary skills into a design project at the Product Design Engineering Program at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden. The course setting provided the students with an open-ended task where the body of a car was to be designed based on specific car categories. This individual project was supported throughout by lectures, seminars, workshops, peer response sessions as well as individual tutorials, all regarding both content and communication. The overall purpose of integrating language and content was to provide the students with a good learning tool and a cognitive approach to choices made and actions taken in their own design process. In this sense, awareness about all aspects of the design process was a focal point. This was done by establishing the relationship between different modes of communication (writing, speaking, sketching and modeling). This also included the introduction of communication as part of the actual design process, rather than just a means of communicating a finished product. The outcome of the design projects and the experiences during the course will be used for further analysis and input for further development.