Study of Design Practical Lab Session Needed – Times of India

Today, a hybrid format of learning-learning is being hailed as the future of education. However, in the case of courses like design, which require regular lab sessions and hands-on training, students and teachers are waiting for the resumption of offline classes.

To shift

Praveen Nahar, director of the National Institute of Design in Ahmedabad, says, “During the epidemic, the institute adopts a hybrid mode with remote facilities including students’ own context, remote access to institutional organizations and much more. Whenever the situation was good, we also provided optional access to workshops / studios / labs.



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Aditi Srivastava, President, Pearl Academy, New Delhi, explains, “With the shift towards the concept of hybrids, the goal was to ensure that students were not deprived of experimental education. Many practical ideas, such as a pattern draft, were taught through online classes. If students did not understand something, they were supported with a recording of a live lecture. Manisha Mohan, dean of the University of Design at Petroleum and Energy Studies (UPES) in Dehradun, said the last 18 months have given a new look to the way various design modules have been taught. “Early time students and teachers were managed to get comfortable in online classes. We also used courses to help students with additional materials, ”he added.


Tackle challenges

Nahar says the transfer was a challenge for both teachers and students. “The hybrid concept has pushed us to re-examine pedagogy and develop new assignment / teaching methods within limitations. Innovative use of technology has increased the level of re-skills for all,” he said.

Srivastava said providing adequate practice materials to the students at home was a big problem. “During the lockdown, even online distribution of relevant raw materials was not possible. As such, we have sent tool kits to each of our students’ homes so that they can continue their hands-on learning, ”he says.


Mohan asked the students to learn based on the materials that are easily available at home. “During our color session, we asked the students to collect different colored red items around their house. These items became the basis of that lecture, ”he says.

More art insights

Srivastava says that due to the transition to a hybrid model, the number of national and international interactions between students and industry experts has increased.


Mohan explains, “Typically, logistics and costs limit the interaction of industry / experts involved to just a few per year. Thanks to the hybrid mode, international masterclasses have almost tripled, while the national sessions have doubled the number we used to contain pre-epidemics.”

Coworkers need interaction

Since students had limited opportunities to interact with each other, there was a sporadic process in the hybrid method of teaching during participatory group search and learning, Nahar said.


There is no substitute for peer learning, especially in a subject like design. “We have given group assignments for which the students have to keep in touch. We believe it has taken away the edge of not being able to meet regular friends, ”Srivastava said.

Mohan feels that the lack of communication with peers affects the mental health of many students. “Because there was no interaction with peers, students could not learn to read body language or facial expressions, which affected their learning. Thus, we have received counseling requests from many students,” he says.

Practical sessions are required


Nahar said, “The organization plans to run new sessions in a hybrid mode through remote facilities and online communication. At the same time, different batches and branches will be allowed to enter the campus as per the need to use the workshop / studio / lab.”

Srivastava said make-up, styling, weaving and printing are some of the courses that require practical sessions. “A recent innovation of the academy is Parlex Studio, which aims to provide training to students of different ages in the form of interactive sessions, including art projects,” he added.

Mohan says that in the absence of lab sessions, sketching and drawing as well as soil modeling suffer the most. “We have moved some modules later in the year, hopefully everything will be normal and the training of the students will not be harmed. We will ask students to go to our alumni labs for training in their workshops, ”he said.

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