decolonisation

Contesting the Decolonisation Narrative: Towards an Entrepreneurship Based Graphic Design Curricula

Reinventing design teaching in an era of exponential growth

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Design Education Strategy

Students across the globe are demanding a change in education.  In South Africa, the call is for ‘decolonisation’ of higher education.  Initially, the call was for free higher education, but students then demanded a significant overhaul of higher education; from the removal of symbols celebrating white supremacy, to a change in the selection criteria and policies to promote applicants on more indicators than academic aptitude alone.

Object Biographies as a method for Communication Design students to construct knowledge in the Design Studies classroom

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Media & Communications Design

This paper reports on the use of object biography writing as a method for Communication Design students to construct knowledge in the Design Studies classroom. Students used a guideline constructed around the stages of the birth, life and death of an object to write an object biography on a mass-manufactured object of their own choice with a focus on how the object is used by individuals to construct and express gender identity.

“Community” as the basic architectural unit: rethinking research and practice towards a decolonised education

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Architecture & Built Environment

As a contribution to the decolonisation debate, we need to develop theoretical frameworks that are better suited to diverse contexts, specifically Africa, and we need to elevate local knowledge systems, thinking that originates from the African continent and architectural theory from African scholars. It also demands a shift from documentation (which we tend to do when studying Africa) to interpretation and the development of new theories and new methodologies of research and practice.

Slow Design (Into Eyilwe Ngokwendeleyo): The Potential for a Decolonized Space Through Graphic Design

Research Sleeping Dogs in Fashion Design Departments of South African Universities: A Decolonisation Obstacle?

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Fashion, Jewellery & Textile Design

South African universities are exploring strategies to decolonise higher education in response to student’s calls. This manuscript investigates research sleeping dogs in fashion design departments of South African universities.  Research sleeping dogs are defined as academic staff who do not have a doctorate qualification, resulting in their inability to fully perform research related activities. Through 2015 data sets sourced from CHET (2017) and Mbatha & Mastamet-Mason (n/d), a benchmark was done of the academic qualifications of staff in fashion design departments of South African universities against national academic qualifications of staff.

Don’t Touch Me on My Discipline! Decolonisation, Disciplinarity and the Problem of Curricular Coherence

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Design Education Strategy

Since the mid 1990’s, recurriculation efforts in South Africa have been marked by ideological complexity. Although there is general agreement, post-apartheid, that curriculum should contribute to the construction of a just, equitable and democratic post-apartheid society, the question of how to get there is not straightforward. Broadly speaking, in the new South Africa, curriculum reform has been oriented around a liberal democratic notion of transformation.

The Benefits of Incorporating a Decolonised Gaze for Design Education

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Graphic Design & Visual Art

Although calls to decolonise education can be seen as threats to replace existing curricula they can also be seen as an opportunity to scrutinise what is valued in design education and how this might be impacted by calls to decolonise. In this paper, which makes use of Legitimation Code Theory (LCT) (Maton 2010a, 2014) to identify the underlying knowledge-knower structure of graphic design assessment, the significance of a specialist gaze for disciplines such as design is outlined. The gaze (Maton 2014) provides knowers with access to the valued knowledge of the discipline and in disciplines such as graphic design is essential to being able to recognise good and bad design and to make the decisions required in the design process.

Student Perceptions on Curriculum Change: Art and Design Theory within a New Bachelor of Visual Arts Degree at Nelson Mandela University.

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Design Education Strategy

This paper seeks to describe changes made to the Visual Studies course at the Nelson Mandela University in light of calls for the decolonisation of curricula, and to assess the impact of these changes by reviewing student responses to the revised curriculum. Using this course as a case study, the paper   reflects on students’ experiences of attempts at decolonisation, and seeks to contribute directions for further change.

Role with the Students: A Social Constructivist Decolonising Teaching Strategy for Visual Literacy in Fashion Design Programs

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Fashion, Jewellery & Textile Design

Visual literacy is a core competency required to express and reinforce cultural identity through clothing in the realm of fashion, and is therefore important within the context of decolonising fashion design education. Traditionally, curricula focused on the Euro-centric concept of fashion and accordingly, teaching methods and design products expected from students were mostly applicable within this context. Nevertheless, in South Africa, due to political and educational reform, the demographics of students in fashion design programs in Universities have changed radically over the past two decades to include diverse African and South African cultures.

Academics are trying to rid South Africa’s universities of the procedures, values, norms, practices, thinking, beliefs and choices that mark anything non-European and not white as inferior. Professor of English Language Teaching and Literacy Development, Rhodes University discusses the issue.

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