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International 2015 Materials Education Symposium

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Resources and Methods of Materials Teaching for Industrial Design

Dr Hengfeng Zuo | Tsinghua University, China

Resources and Methods of Materials Teaching for Industrial Design

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Materials education for art and design (e.g., industrial design) students encounters a few difficulties and challenges, such as: 1. students being unfamiliar with technical terms and languages; 2. students having different thinking ways; 3. lack of technical facilities and experimental conditions with materials in some art and design schools; 4. lack of dual-expertise with both materials knowledge and design experience in some schools etc. According to my practice and experience in the Academy of Arts & Design of Tsinghua University (China), I think the most important aspects of delivering an effective and efficient materials teaching to industrial design students include the following: 1. Utilising various thinking methods (logic thinking, lateral thinking, analogical thinking etc); 2. Introducing materials resources (various websites, software e.g. CES EduPack, textbooks etc); 3. Encouraging materials exploration via experiment (for a particular purpose according to a particular design brief); 4. Establishing a sensation and aesthetics based material database as an additional support (this database corresponds to a physical material library with real material samples); 5. Tutorial of materials with real design examples from both tutor's own design practice and other design professionals' practice, which showcase wise and successful application of materials. This talk will address materials teaching resources and methods for industrial design course, with emphasis put on materials exploration via experiment. Such experiments include: 1. multi-sensory interaction with materials to produce either a sensory harmony or sensory incongrency or Synesthetic effects; 2. exploration of materials function to meet design requirements etc; 3. materials dimensions and form exploration; 4. material surface finish or decoration exploration. I will share the experience of materials teaching and showcase the design work with innovative materials application in domestic products and aero-industrial products from both our undergraduate students and master students of industrial design at the Academy of Arts & Design.