As an educator, practitioner and researcher in the field of Communication Design I am dedicated to the education of design students within a liberal arts setting. This multifaceted educational environment best supports the student’s need for developing critical problem solving skills, balanced with an exposure to multiple points of view and sources of information on a broad scale. Thinking critically requires influences from many directions. Provocative thought and inquiry comes from exposure to ideas and practices which make questioning and evaluation an important part of the creative process. As such, my role in the classroom is not merely to relay the determined content and approved techniques in my field of expertise, but also to surround this content with a discourse that questions and evaluates how and why such information is considered to be useful.

I position Communication Design within both a contemporary and historical context that informs its very evolution.

As a practicing designer, I bring to my students the practicality of experience balanced with a passion for seeking truly smart, evolutionary design solutions. This translates into a desire to see students develop into inventive thinkers — architects of information and form. As we continue to evolve culturally and technologically, society demands that there be sophisticated visionaries who can step into the role of creative problem solver. By creating cross-disciplinary opportunities which nurture the processes of search, discovery, implementation, and analysis the student is provided the tools with which to explore his and her own potential.  In my classroom this didactic environment promotes critical inquiry as an integral component of the design experience—skills which are further supported by the integration of human factors, social and cultural implications, technology and aesthetics. It is necessary that students understand not only the practical applications of formal design issues but also the greater role of design for social or cultural purposes—design for the sake of improvement, for a better way of doing, seeing, or understanding. What this proposes is a continual redefining of “designer” within society and as a result redefining how education evolves with the changing needs of the art and design student.

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