Based on the authors teaching experience, this essay presents an example of how the traditional design studio might
be modified so as to foster democratic participation and egalitarian communication between the participating students
and instructors. Open communication in the studio is seen as the key to incorporating important values such as collaboration,
community and respect for the every day environment into the studio's hidden curriculum. The essay begins
by discussing the potentials for and obstacles to meaningful communication in the studio. This discussion is followed
by a description of a modified studio project that included continuous role-playing on the part of the students. The
final discussion outlines and evaluates how these modifications enabled students to use previous knowledge and everyday
language and permitted the discussion of topics not usually debated in the studio. The students, in their assumed
roles, became critics, clients and members of a team of designers. Hence these changes influenced the distribution of
power in the studio and the students gained more control over their learning experience.
Keywords : Design Studio, Collaboration, Communication, Power, Everyday Environment.
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