A community-based learning program to improve wellbeing and design student success

M.R.K. van den Bergh, M. van der Bijl-Brouwer, R.A. Price

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

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While the Pandemic has increased awareness towards student wellbeing in higher education (HE), it also exacerbated existing challenges. Specifically, students pursuing their master graduation thesis often find themselves isolated and overwhelmed due to the individualistic nature of their project and the pressure to create a ‘masterpiece’. In this paper, we provide insight into how designing for community can positively impact thesis design students’ motivation, sense of community and wellbeing, which we identify as drivers of student success. We discuss and evaluate a community-based learning (CBL) program we designed and implemented to improve student success during the master thesis journey of 92 students at the Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, XXXX. Our findings from the program are that; (1) facilitating connections between students generates a sense of community; (2) a customizable program supports student agency which in turn drives motivation; (3) a focus on student success instead of performance improves wellbeing.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings DRS 2022
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - 2022
EventDRS 2022 - Bilbao, Spain
Duration: 25 Jun 20223 Jul 2022


ConferenceDRS 2022
Internet address


  • design education
  • community-based learning
  • student wellbeing
  • pandemic


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