Re-conceptualizing the role of tutor(s) in research-based education: the tutor(s) as the curriculum

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The paper presents readers with an effort to explore and to better understand the educators’ task in conditions of uncertainty and high complexity on the occasion of a postgraduate urban design studio redesign. The case study examined here illustrates how rethinking the studio’s content, objectives and layout gradually led to the re-conceptualization of the tutors’ own involvement in the learning process. Course curriculum was devised as an open and evolving network of the tutors’ own resources and design research practices and those employed by their affiliated researchers from within or outside the setting of the academy. All were chosen for their value in reading or managing urban phenomena. The mosaic consisted of different individual research and design practices that are problem-focused and context-specific, communicated directly to students by the very people responsible for their conception and development. Learners were required to investigate the instrumentality of these practices according to their own personal pursuits; to make their own networks of connections, and were even encouraged to create their own personal schemata of design research. The second major shift of the rethink lay in recognizing learner autonomy and diversity, thus establishing a new operational framework for the two to prosper. An amalgam of interconnected learning spaces provided the conditions necessary for all these networks to co-exist and interact. The paper describes the different aspects of the tutors’ involvement and contributions in the design and implementation of this model, as they assumed a number of roles, but most importantly, as they became learners themselves. It also brings about the critical role of the tutors’ hunch in both designing and managing a design studio’s learning experience.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Externally publishedYes
EventPractice of Teaching | Teaching of Practice: the Teacher’s Hunch - University of Antwerp, Antwerp, Belgium
Duration: 28 Jun 201929 Jun 2019


ConferencePractice of Teaching | Teaching of Practice: the Teacher’s Hunch
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