Student-Driven Campus Design
This project was a student driven project where in the end the goal was for us freshman to design a new school that we would potentially move into Senior year. This was a joint project, combining all of our core classes(Humanities, Physics, and Math). In each classroom were four groups of students from any class. Using the Design Thinking Process, each group would pick a shared space of the new school that they would like to focus on. Examples of this could be designing a new Commons, or designing what the classrooms, offices, or even campus would look like. The sky was the limit for this project, and it really showed.
The human centered design process has a lot of trial and error. From experience in this project I learned that the design process can go many different ways. There actually are different types of design thinking and prototyping. There is a type called matrixing, where you form one or multiple questions, and for three minutes jot down as many ideas as you can. There are also concept posters(which were our end products), and many other types. The design process has many stages to it.
The first stage is “Divergent Thinking”. We start generating any ideas in our head, no matter how ambitious they may be. From there we start taking out the ideas that either: will have no impact, not realistic, or too hard for us to complete. Now we would have ideas that are possible to go forth with. We choose one idea that we want to stick to and we start with our first prototype. It can be any prototype you want, but you can only use it once. When we get feedback and refine your prototype you have to choose another one for your second draft. These prototypes can include 3D models, and sketch ups. Once all the feedback is gathered from the second draft, you can start with your final concept poster which is what we all created(you can view ours at the top of the page).
What stood out in our group was probably the way we worked with each other. When we came across challenges, which there were a lot of, we always assigned assignments for each other, we help each other, and we had great communication between ourselves. I however would have changed the amount of work time I contributed to in the beginning. I had a tendency to rush through work and disappear in the first 2 weeks of the project. Our first couple prototypes were not as professional as we would have wanted due to the amount of ties I disappeared. But after enough time of the group asking me to contribute more I snapped and contributed so much with my group through the middle and end of the project. This project has been the one that really fixed the way I look at collaboration. Even though I have been able to collaborate before. I was always to impatient and I didn't have good communication. But this project taught me that better collaboration leads to a much better outcome. In your project and relationships with group members. This shows in our poster. We each had a piece of the poster to work on. I was in charge of the abstract. Grady was in charge of the renderings. Susan was in charge of the blueprints. And Delaney was in charge of the budget. We all helped each other with each piece while balancing the amount of time we put into our own and it really turned out for the better.
I do feel like it is important for the students to have say in what they want their campus to look like! We, the students are ones who want to grow our education in school. But we can't really do that if we are in a school that looks, and acts like a prison at some times. I feel like if the students always have say, they will create a campus that they know they will be able to be free with our creativity in. In all of the freshman's final prototypes you can see the crazy, creative, and freedom based designs they created. This shows that the student body knows what they want to learn in. And in the new designs it will also be welcoming to new students to the school or project based learning in general. I feel like this project will be the start of something amazing for all schools in the future.