The Subjects of Our Affection
Article by: Leslie Becker
Pages 82 - 86

Table of Contents


In this article, Becker addresses bridging the gap between teacher influence and student intuition to create design ideas that are rich in both research and content. She discusses the various variables affecting learning, including project content and form, the teacher, and the student, and includes several case studies that show how her students were able to combine research and representation to create successful design projects.


Becker explains that educators and practitioners in the field of design have to withstand a sort of “whiplash,” as their projects can take on a wide array of forms and they must adapt and research accordingly. Thus, teachers face a challenge in preparing students to develop a responsible design voice and learn how to combine intuition with academic research.


Becker makes a solid and well supported claim when she says that teachers need to acknowledge their design biases in order to open up the classroom to differences in design, and when she explains that students have a wide variety of different learning techniques and styles that need to be acknowledged by the teacher. Her sentiments match those of this article on the website "The Telegraph," which makes an argument for the efficacy of revolutionary teaching methods in today's classrooms. When teachers can make a wide variety of techniques, teaching styles and design styles available to their students, they will learn to adapt to different design demands and adopt a sense of responsibility. Flexibility is key to handling “mental whiplash."