Various challenging students assignments : cases of creations realized on festivals and events

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A most effective way of learning is to intrinsically motivate students by challenging concrete tasks; this paper describes a number of cases (11 in total) in which students were challenged to design, elaborate technical and practical features, and actually built, too. All cases have a similar approach: the initial development of a concept is an individual assignment for all students (to generate as much ideas as possible), then the most promising concept is selected (often part of a competition) and continued with technical and practical elaboration by a group of students. This group becomes in most cases a wider group when the actual realization takes place.
A valuable source of challenging assignments can be found in contributions to festivals and events. Festivals offer ample opportunities, because most of the festivals are developing activities in addition to their core business of "music and food". Contributions to festival are preferred because it really doesn’t require much to inspire and motivate students for this kind of assignments. The demand for a distinctive structure, that stand out in a festival is motivating in itself, the intention to actually realize the project helps a lot, too. There is also an additional opportunity, offered by the limited duration of a festival (1-5 days). This provides a great scope for experiments and innovations. Combined with the challenge to develop an integral object within technical and pragmatic constraints provides a good basis for attractive education to students.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBuilding our Future : Proceedings of the Integrated Design Conference ID@50, 29 June - 1 July 2016, Bath, United Kingdom
EditorsS. Emmitt
Place of PublicationBath
PublisherUniversity of Bath
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)978-0-86197-192-3, 10: 0-86197-192-2
Publication statusPublished - 29 Jun 2016
EventIntegrated Design Conference ID@50 - Centre for Advanced Studies in Architecture, Department of Architecture and Civil, Bath, United Kingdom
Duration: 29 Jun 20161 Jul 2016


ConferenceIntegrated Design Conference ID@50
Abbreviated titleID@50
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • design-based learning
  • DBL
  • proof of concept
  • integral design
  • Teamwork

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