Harvard: Into Practice

Pushing students to confront limits by transforming the abstract to physical form

Harvard Office of the Vice Provost for Advances in Learning Into Practice (December 10, 2018) feature on teaching methods for liberal arts college undergraduates interested in design.

In her Transformations course, Assistant Professor of Architecture Megan Panzano uses architectural design methods and concepts, and a workshop approach for giving feedback, to engage undergraduates from a wide range of concentrations. When students translate abstract ideas into physical form through a variety of materials and fabrication techniques (see photos), they confront limits, question assumptions, and expand their problem-solving capacity…

By working within material constraints, generating new options, and learning together, students’ perspectives are transformed. “This process is a micro-version of translating observations of the world into the world.”

student work:  Lia Mondavi, Weaving + Yuke Zheng, Packing | Panzano spring 2018 HAA 96A Transformations studio

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