Design in Decline: Breathing New Life Into an Industry Through Education

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The practice of communications design has undergone extreme and fundamental changes over the past several years to such a degree that it seems ‘traditional’ designers may become an endangered species. As technology progresses, certain responsibilities formerly ascribed to designers are now readily available—thanks to online resources—for anyone to access. Simultaneously, other activities are being undertaken by designers which did not exist a mere five years ago. The practice of design is changing and for its practitioners to remain relevant, they must evolve as well. As a result of this paradigm shift, many traditionally-trained design educators are struggling with the question of how to teach students to be successful in a profession that is not only different from the one they used to know, but is also constantly evolving in new directions. Can educators successfully prepare the next generation of designers by merely teaching the latest trends and software while focusing on the same design curriculum they have always taught? Educators will need to attempt to bridge the gap between the traditional and the unknown. Adaptability and entrepreneurship become all-important, and teaching these invaluable skills will require a curriculum that is responsive, collaborative and challenging in ways that reach beyond the visual problem-solving lessons of the past.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)41-52
Number of pages11
Journaldmi:Journal, Volume 13
Issue number1948-7177
StateE-pub ahead of print - Mar 18 2019
EventAcademic Design Management Conference
: Next Wave
- Ravensbourne University, London, United Kingdom
Duration: Aug 1 2018Aug 2 2018


  • design
  • Education
  • future
  • communications design
  • curriculum
  • AI
  • technology
  • higher education


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