The Process of Thinking and Making in the Beginning Design Studio
MetadataShow full item record
Based on the results of numerous studies, researchers have found that metacognition, or the ability to "think about thinking," plays a significant role in students' design education. Educators are increasingly focused on metacognition in design education, not only with the subject matter, but also with the development of metacognitive skills for self-regulated and lifelong learning. Since the early 2000s, there have been an increasing number of studies on the role of metacognition in education. However, there is a lack of research on the nature of metacognitive processing in design education and how metacognitive strategies develop in design students. This study focuses on the process of learning, in terms of design thinking, and specifically on the role of metacognitive learning. The purpose of the inquiry is to extend metacognitive theory to design learning and uncover the factors and influences of metacognitive thinking and learning during a student's first year in the Design Lab. In this study, the researcher probed the students' metacognitive ability in different design learning-tasks. The research frames metacognitive aspects of students' learning based on evidence obtained from students while they were working in the Design Lab. The evidence is as follows: verbal description (oral or written), experiential (videos or notes about people in action) and artifactual objects of the learning process (sketches and models). The field studies utilized a constructivist paradigm to examine the various forms of thinking in action, and the actions that occur during a learning-task. Verbal protocol analysis of video recordings of students engaged in selected learning design tasks was used to uncover the metacognitive thinking that develops during the execution of the learning-task. The researcher used a thematic data analysis process to develop an understanding of the data and identify common themes that arose from the investigation. Themes were generated through the interpretation of the data in light of the literature reviewed, the research questions, and the researcher's personal knowledge and intuition. The cyclical process of metacognitive thinking for design students was examined based on three main categories: Reflective process knowledge, reflective process monitoring, and reflective process control. The research reveals that metacognitive thinking plays an important role in design idea generation and development, and is an important part of the creative process in design. As one would expect, based on metacognitive theory, the differences between high-performing and low-performing students are well explained. High-performing students focused more on metacognitive thinking, especially monitoring their design process, while low-performance students were more concerned with cognition, or doing the task. The findings have added new knowledge to the fields of metacognition and self-regulated learning by identifying the conscious thinking process that occurs when students engage in design learning in the first year Design Lab. This knowledge will be helpful to design educators in formulating design learning-tasks for students in their labs in tandem with fully utilizing the environment of their school.
- Doctoral Dissertations