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By : Nisha A. Fernando

This paper presents an example of a pedagogical model based on combining knowledge and creativity and how the model was applied to teach an upper-level undergraduate studio in an interior architecture program. The model is established on the conceptual paradigm that the design process is more crucial than the final design products in a studio learning experience. Diverting from the normative approaches and instilled by environment-behavior research, the studio projects are based on both a knowledge/thought-building process and a design/idea-building process. Students involve in a research project to collect information on the user preferences and then translate the information into design concepts on which they build the final design. The systematic phases of the design process expose students to recognize that design decisions are not made randomly or as expressions of self, but rather as carefully thought out responses to socio-cultural needs of people. The model enables students to generate socially and culturally sensitive design ideas and to think outside of the 'architecture-as-art' box.
Keywords : Environmental Design Research, Critical Thinking, Creative Applications

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