During the recent shift in design education fueled by pandemic, it became clear that academia – along with the industry – needed to adapt new methodologies. On one hand, the design education endured a variety of setbacks and challenging impositions that were caused by the pandemic. On the other hand, the ‘new unknown’ or the uncertainty for what the future holds for design education and the design students also provided some opportunities to experiment with. This research is intended to focus on the latter. There was a remarkable integration of online education and virtual interaction opportunities during pandemic-driven education shift. Academia needed to implement efficient and adaptable environments with all the hardship of not being able to interact in-person. These hardships brought new perspectives to the academics as well as the design students to cope with different drawbacks by implementing new or revised methodologies in design thinking, problem-solving, collaboration and interaction. Academia-industry collaborations play a huge role in this effort. As a major part of design education, staying progressive and innovative require a dynamic outlook that keeps morphing rapidly through these times of setbacks. Embracing new movements and trends within technological, social, and cultural domains are becoming key factors to the progressiveness of academia. Shifting or changing social norms, trends and requirements affect the learning processes and outcomes. New models with better utilized interactions would diminish these shortcomings and will be creating a more immersive collaboration opportunities which all together would be able to revitalize the design education. This research aims to analyze various methodologies which could benefit a transitional design education model to adapt to the changing educational needs of the designers and it is intended to be an educational resource to provide academic models as a supportive framework for designers and educators.
Asst. Professor Mekin Elçioğlu is an Industrial Designer; He also taught studio and other classes before moving to United States to pursue other dreams. He started working in NYC as a design consultant in a private company with a focus in furniture design. He then moved on to a Fine Jewelry Company where he became Head Designer for many years before joining K-STATE. His recent academic area of research and practice, his doctorate dissertation, was on Product Semantics and Affordances. His master’s thesis was on Automotive Design. He is also a pilot, a musician and an avid rider.