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"ACM SIGCHI General Interest Announcements (Mailing List)" <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 18 Jan 2008 01:59:55 -0600
Ingbert Floyd <[log in to unmask]>
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Ingbert Floyd <[log in to unmask]>
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Mapping the Design Space of Design Education in iSchools
A brainstorming wildcard session to be held at The Third Annual
iSchools Conference, February 28-March 1 at UCLA.

Details of the wildcard:

***We also invite online participation from people not attending the
conference, and from people interested in design issues in education
who do not happen to be based in an iSchool.***

Apologies for cross-posting

iSchools have already established a reputation for rigorous
multidisciplinary analysis of how individuals, groups, and communities
use information technologies. However, many of us not only do
analysis, but also do design informed by that analysis. We have the
feeling that the kind of design practiced in iSchools is somewhat
different from that practiced in other disciplines such as computer
science, art and design, mechanical and industrial engineering, or
indeed the emerging group of schools of design (dSchools). There seems
to be something of an iSchool 'accent' to design. However, we aren't
completely sure what it is or what it should be. It seems to us that
iSchools have a special, perhaps unique, take on design activities
which comes from our history of studying not just the design of
information systems and how people use them, but also from taking a
step back and studying the information behavior of individuals and
groups, thus taking a more holistic view of design. Despite this long
tradition, we rarely engage with explicitly teaching design to our

We would like to invite you to join us at the iConference for a
brainstorming session on the practice and potential of doing design in
both teaching and research in an iSchool. We hope to consider a number
of issues, including but not limited to the following:

* What makes design activities from an Information Science perspective
special/unique? How can we communicate and demonstrate this to our

* How can we integrate the (often) observational research done in
fields such as Information Behavior, the ethnographic side of
Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) and  Computer-Supported Cooperative
Work (CSCW), and Organizational Studies more explicitly into our
design activities? What kinds of hands-on activities can we develop
for the classroom so that it becomes second-nature for our students to
approach design from this perspective?

* How can we mobilize perspectives on design from many different
disciplines, including but not limited to Architecture, Urban
Planning, Industrial Engineering, Art, and Computer Science? How can
we recruit students from these different disciplines into our classes
so that we create a multidisciplinary experience in our classes?

As designers ourselves, we are aware of the dangers of locking in on
particular ideas too early in the design process.

1) We envision this Wildcard session as the beginning of a persistent
conversation surrounding design education in iSchools. To that end, we
have set up electronic infrastructure including a wiki and a Google
Group to allow people to start the conversation now, and to continue
the conversation after the iConference is finished. See:

2) We will be utilizing various techniques for brainstorming design
during the Wildcard session. We encourage you to vote for particular
techniques you favor or would like to try at the wildcard session on
our wiki:

We would be delighted to have you join us at the iConference - please
indicate your interest in attending on the wiki
(  Also, sign up
for the DesignEd Google Group
( to get involved in the
discussion of design education in iSchools. We plan to maintain both
the wiki and Google group beyond the iConference, in an effort to
establish an on-going, public dialog about design, design research,
and design pedagogy. If you cannot attend the iConference we still
welcome your participation in the online discussion.


Cameron Jones ([log in to unmask],
Ingbert Floyd ([log in to unmask],
Michael Twidale ([log in to unmask],
Piotr Adamczyk ([log in to unmask],

Ingbert Floyd
PhD Student
Graduate School of Library and Information Science
University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign     ||     (217) 721-3171     ||     skype: spacesoon

Check out the unofficial GSLIS Wiki:

"Dream in a pragmatic way."
-Aldous Huxley

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