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Design Theory and Pedagogy Opens Exhibition Exploring Institutional Histories

This November, students pursuing SCI-Arc’s MS in Design Theory and Pedagogy opened their midterm exhibition in one of the school’s galleries representing the culmination of their first semester of work in the program. Organized by Anthony Morey, SCI-Arc alumnus, design faculty, and executive director and chief curator at the A+D Museum, the exhibition featured video interviews and a selection of informational brochures containing research gathered by the students into the histories and pedagogies of various cultural and educational institutions.

As part of the initial fall semester studio in the Design Theory and Pedagogy program, students in the current class displayed monitors screening video interviews conducted with a diverse cross-section of SCI-Arc’s student body responding to four questions (What was a pivotal moment in your education? What made you decide to come to this institution? How do you think the future of learning will change? What is your methodology of learning and how has it changed over time?), as well as printed pamphlets containing institutional profiles based on research compiled by the students on institutions and organizations such as Apple, Museo Nacional de Antropología in Mexico, University of Tehran in Iran, Saatchi Gallery in London, and even SCI-Arc itself.

In this studio, students were led by Morey to conduct historical and pedagogical research on various institutions, so that the students could first gain an understanding of the positions that exist so they could then begin to develop their own in the form of course syllabi. These syllabi eventually encompass design briefs conceptualized within core B.Arch, M.Arch, and vertical studio curricula, that are then implemented during the spring semester.

"Mapping the historical and current pedological methods across various disciplines allowed us to understand how the foundations of so many disciplines have been fundamentally changed over time,” says Morey of the exhibition. “[Comparing] corporations like Amazon to educational structures such as SCI-Arc allows us to understand how the future of pedagogies may evolve and shift. The project here is a culmination of these studies by researching and investigating a large cross-section of pedagogical systems while also interviewing those who participate in these systems—the students."

Design Theory and Pedagogy Coordinator Marcelyn Gow adds, "Through their curatorial approach to an exhibition at SCI-Arc on institutional pedagogies, this class of 2020 provides us with a relevant and compelling model for how to spatially materialize theoretical discourse and diverse pedagogical positions."