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Frequently Asked: What are Design Labs?

general announcement

Design Labs meet every 90 minutes every Monday, Wednesday and Friday to meet four primary goals: 

  • Engage students in authentic, complex, interdisciplinary challenges in their communities 
  • Foster active, experiential learning that moves past theory to application 
  • Model project-based learning through inquiry, collaboration and deep understanding 
  • Develop design thinking as a habit of mind 

During the six weeks students follow the design thinking process of  

  • Building Empathy: Learn about a specific challenge in the community and deeply understand the multiple perspectives that inform this challenge 
  • Defining: Narrowing research to a core question or challenge 
  • Ideating: Brainstorming all the possible solutions, and then working collaboratively to identify the solution that best meets the challenge 
  • Prototyping & Testing: Actively experimenting with ways create the solution, testing, getting feedback and revising 
  • Sharing & Implementing: Presenting learning to peers, staff and experts, and putting the solution in place 

Embedded in this work are content skills and knowledge, so students are learning, applying and adapting these skills and knowledge in a meaningful way. 

After six weeks, students move to the next design challenge. Check out our catalog to see what students are designing right now: 

Do you have a Frequently Asked Question? Submit it here:  

  • General Announcement