Abstract

This paper aims to disclose undercurrents of in-class interactions and provide a deeper understanding of the social interactions and performances in the design studio. With adopting an ethnographic approach, this study attempts to explore the participants’ activities and dynamics behind them. The chosen subject environment for this study is a first year basic design studio at a selected School of Architecture and Design. The setting is taken as a social environment and observed using ethnographic methods; then the observations were tried to be interpreted through Erving Goffman’s metaphor of drama (1959). This study is not primarily interested in the materials used in the class; similarly, maintaining a certain standpoint for the methodology of the education is out of concern. Rather, it uses such subjects as mediums to understand participants’ behaviour in the design studio. Being an on-going descriptive work, focusing on social interactions, this study delivers insights from the design studio and provides social explanations which can form a basis for developments in design education in the future.

Keywords:

design education, design studio, ethnography of design, drama metaphor

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
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Jul 9th, 12:00 AM

An ethnography of the design studio: Exploring social interactions and performances in studio environment through Goffman’s dramaturgical approach

This paper aims to disclose undercurrents of in-class interactions and provide a deeper understanding of the social interactions and performances in the design studio. With adopting an ethnographic approach, this study attempts to explore the participants’ activities and dynamics behind them. The chosen subject environment for this study is a first year basic design studio at a selected School of Architecture and Design. The setting is taken as a social environment and observed using ethnographic methods; then the observations were tried to be interpreted through Erving Goffman’s metaphor of drama (1959). This study is not primarily interested in the materials used in the class; similarly, maintaining a certain standpoint for the methodology of the education is out of concern. Rather, it uses such subjects as mediums to understand participants’ behaviour in the design studio. Being an on-going descriptive work, focusing on social interactions, this study delivers insights from the design studio and provides social explanations which can form a basis for developments in design education in the future.

 

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