Week 12 Reflection

What did I learn in this unit?

This week we learned about milestones, backcasting, and critiquing future scenarios critically. In order to learn these futurist techniques we dove deeper into Arnold Wasserman’s 2050 education plan. We also listened to Adam Gordon’s overview of critiquing futures. Backcasting is a futures studies method that takes a desirable future and works backwards in order to identify policies and programs that will connect that future to today. Today in class when my group started to imagine what education will be in 2050, we first agreed upon a few different desirable ways of learning in the future. From there we worked top down and tried to determine different established systems, structures, and regulations that effect education today. By identifying these we were able to come up with different ways to alter them in order to reach our preferred future. Our group sees a future of collaborative learning in a shared knowledge economy. We want students to be able to switch places with other people in the world that they have an educational interest in (trade, research, geographic location, language, etc). Anything that they want to learn from that person. We want to rid of typical school establishments and make a facility that is open for resources and mentorship. However, we started critiquing this type of future by considering what will happen if someone misuses our system and hacks the swap-learning model. Additionally, we considered how we will keep people motivated to learn and hold them accountable. Overall, this week encouraged me to take the issues I have with the current education system and create a new future of learning. I am excited to see our concept resolve and use my designer tool kit to communicate our idea.

How will this apply to a design project?

This can apply to my independent study that I am doing for digital drawing. I have spent this mini learning how to draw on a wacom cintiq tablet. I will be able to take what I’ve learned this week about futures and explain them with a sketch. I want to learn how digital drawing can be used to story board desirable futures.

How will this apply to my design practice?

This week will apply to my design practice because I can now be more critical about the things I am designing in terms of how well they will fit into the future. I also now have the knowledge to imagine a future where one of my designs can play an important role. By identifying an ideal future for one of my projects I can assess the forces that make up society today and decide how they need to change in order for my product to thrive.