Why hypothetical? Grounding “the guess” in experimentation

Mary Anne Beecher

Abstract


This exploratory paper discusses the advantages and disadvantages of the use of design experimentation to augment students’ approaches to speculative projects within the context of professional interior design education. By analysing student-based research as integrated into final comprehensive graduate-level design projects at a major North American university, the potential for experimentation to inform design process is articulated. Although the results of such acts are not always easily assessed within the constraints of real-life criteria, it is optimum for generating innovations in design process and hybrid theoretical frameworks that ultimately challenge the profession to define its boundaries in new ways.

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