Circles of practice: educational and professional graphic design

Logan, Cheri (2006) Circles of practice: educational and professional graphic design. Journal of Workplace Learning, 18 (6). pp. 331-343. Full text not available from this repository.

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Purpose: This paper investigates the specialist learning undertaken in graphic design classrooms and its relationship to industry practices. It considers how well students are prepared for work and the nature of this vocational preparation.

Design/methodology/approach: The paper is based on an empirical study using a qualitative, case study approach. A situated perspective on design learning and knowledge was adopted, and a strong focus on studio discourse developed. An analytical method based on respondents' use of metaphor in practice-oriented discourse evolved, providing an interpretive framework for the study.

Findings: The paper describes the difficulties involved in undertaking research into design classrooms, outlining how these were resolved to allow the unique learning activities of the design practicum to be identified. It discusses the lack of recognition of design pedagogies, and considers their characteristic strengths and weaknesses. Key metaphorical discourses structuring design learning, teaching and practice are identified. Shared discourses in use across graphic design education and industry suggest the alignment of these contexts, providing a perspective on them as overlapping “circles of practice”. Conclusions are drawn about the effectiveness of graphic design vocational education.

Originality/value: The study suggests a means of researching practice-oriented discourses and activities across a range of settings. It offers ways of considering the alignment of educational and professional contexts by using a modified “situated” perspective on learning. This perspective allows for recognition of types of learning that do not meet traditional, “academic” criteria and of the vocationally-referenced pedagogies that promote them.

Item Type: Article
Journal / Publication Title: Journal of Workplace Learning
Publisher: Emerald Group Publishing Ltd
ISSN: 1366-5626
Departments: Professional Services > Academic Quality & Development (AQD)
Depositing User: Insight Administrator
Date Deposited: 03 Feb 2011 13:31
Last Modified: 11 Jan 2024 19:30
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