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Teaching and learning design through the web

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posted on 2008-06-27, 14:45 authored by Osnat Dagan, Yoel Rothchild
“…The students will deal with technological contents which focus on problem solving processes based on human needs.” (The syllabus for science and technology in lower secondary school in Israel, 1996) ORT Israel Middle School is leading the implementation of new concepts in technology education. A model of a design process is used as a systematic and organised tool for teaching and learning technological problem solving. The ORT Israel Research and Development Center has developed a variety of materials to promote design education: 1. a book – Everything Starts with Design 2. video activities – an educational kit that fosters design education 3. Internet site – a virtual learning environment. The Internet site is linked with classroom activities. The teacher in effect acts as the tutor for problem solving skills – the design process. Each group of students chooses a problem from a bank of everyday situations and follows the process through the site. In every design step the students are exposed to another aspect of the process through an example and interactive activities. Every stage can be documented using a portfolio template that can be downloaded, printed, completed and evaluated. The site is supported by a virtual teacher whose main task is to help groups from different places to collaborate and share ideas about the same problem as a community. The site was launched in September 1998. The course was offered to schools through the ORT Israel virtual school. Fifteen classes (20 students each) studied a model of a design process through the net. Through the presentation we are going to report, following the first two years, about the advantages and the current dilemmas of using the virtual course. The website (which was translated to English) will be introduced with the didactical concepts and a discussion will raise some intermediate conclusions based on our experience.



  • Design

Research Unit

  • D&T Association Conference Series


DAGAN, O. and ROTHCHILD, Y., 2000. Teaching and learning design through the web. IN: Kimbell, R. (ed.). Design and Technology International Millennium Conference. Wellesbourne : The D&T Association, pp. 38-42.



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