How To Use Your Design Studio Instructor: a short comic book

November 19, 2014 – 4:56 pm

Students do not magically know how to work in a studio environment. Asking good questions, one health knowing when to ask instructors for feedback, figuring out which instructor to ask about what topic, articulating how you need an instructor to help you on a particular topic — these are all learned skills. My intent in these handouts is to start making them more explicit and to scaffold students into mature studio-learning behavior, very, very fast.

I’m experimenting with making hand-drawn handouts for my college-level teaching. Rich Dionne and Davin Huston have been super-gracious about letting me jump in and help coach teams through the PPI design lab’s end-of-term push, and to get myself up to speed on the students — and vice versa — I decided to… draw things.

It occurs to me that these sheets may see more general usage in the future, so here’s the two-page handout — it’s designed for undergraduate (STEM) studio courses I teach. The first page is a manual on “how to utilize the Mel,” including accessibility considerations and a starting list of my skillsets. The second page is a group status check-in document. Feedback/edit-suggestions for future versions is quite welcome. And yes, Olin students, you’ll be seeing this sort of thing if you take any of my classes.

How To Use A Mel-Instructor For Your Studio Design Team

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  1. 8 Responses to “How To Use Your Design Studio Instructor: a short comic book”

  2. Turns out, much of this applies to using a Mel in daily life too. Does not account for head rubs, dancing, or spontaneous kitchen experiments, though.

    By Bonnie on Dec 12, 2014

  3. Much of the Mel remains undocumented, despite efforts to explain the mystery. But I do love being Bonnie’s Mel. And Matt’s Mel. And everybody’s Mel. (*Mellll!*)

    (If my students are reading this: yes, your instructor also has a goofy side, and friends, and is a person. All of us are. I’m just shameless about showing it, because I don’t compartmentalize my life, and want to live as if I had nothing to hide or prove*. And you could also live this way, if you would like.)

    *I’m not perfect at this, by any means.

    By Mel on Dec 12, 2014

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