High-Definition Screens for Architecture Studios: Digital Media Pedagogy Integration

Additional HD screens in studios will enable the integration of new media content into studio teaching and provide continued support for digital technology pedagogy and the reduction of student printing costs.


This project is a follow-up to a successful 2015-16 pilot program that improved and innovated architecture studio teaching through the use of portable high-definition screens in five selected architecture studios. The pilot program was made possible with funding from the ISU Computation Advisory Committee. Surveyed responses to the screens were extremely positive, with the 100 impacted students reporting increased use of digital media, improved classroom experience, enhanced learning outcomes, and savings on printing costs. When presented with these findings in January 2017 the twenty-seven Department of Architecture faculty present voted unanimously to develop a second CAC program in response to the successes of the pilot. The requested funding of $17,412.93 will be used to purchase seventeen additional sets of screens and presentation accessories. This will provide one screen for each architecture studio and will impact every student in the Department of Architecture: 301 undergraduate students and 63 graduate students in addition to about 30 interdisciplinary students taught by Architecture faculty for a total of around 400 students impacted by these funds.

Value Statement and Implementation Strategy

In order to be competitive and innovative future architects, it is imperative that Iowa State students develop a flexible skillset for communicating and designing across multiple media. Our 2016 pilot study demonstrated how movable high-definition screens enhanced student learning outcomes by increasing the range and sophistication of methods and media that students can learn and practice in their studios. We collected survey results from 89 architecture students across 4 years of the undergraduate program. 77% reported experimenting with different media as a result of the high-definition screens in their studio. In particular, 90% of students added video to their work and 68% added digital animations to their skillsets. Before the use of screens, this media was rarely used due to the inaccessibility of audiovisual equipment. Additionally, 47% of students used the screens outside of studio time to experiment and practice presentations; about a third of students (31.9%) used them at least once per day. Every student who responded to the question “did the screens improve your educational experience in studio” answered “yes.”

The architectural profession is continuously evolving in response to the latest technology. The pilot study demonstrated how the addition of high-definition screens supports the introduction digital technologies and visual communications skills as they are changing. With the proposed upgrades, other subjects such as history, theory, and building technology can be further integrated into design studio, increasing our teaching effectiveness and greatly improving our students’ learning experience. These upgrades will further impact student learning by allowing more faculty to introduce and experiment with instructional technology in their studios. Bringing a screen into every studio will help Iowa State University continue to lead among design programs through innovative curricula that engages with students through developing technologies.

The screens will be introduced in the Fall 2017 semester followed by a new evaluation and analysis of their impact upon curricula and student learning. This new study will utilize classroom observations, student surveys, and interviews to judge the impact of the screens on classroom culture and student learning outcomes. We will produce a new report on our findings which will be presented to the department and Dean of the College for the consideration of similar upgrades for other Colleges. Based upon the successful 2016 pilot, the Department Chair is prepared to provide additional funds for future purchases.

Supporting Webpages and Documents:

Proposed by: Nicholas Senske
Created: 14 Feb 2017
Last Updated: 20 Feb 2017
In Discussion
Funding Path:
Yes - Computer Advisory Committee (CAC)
Likes: 64 ( like )
Volunteers: 1 ( volunteer )
Followers: 18 ( follow )
Share: http://www.techstarter.iastate.edu/89


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0 Andrew Gleeson 20 Feb 2017

These would change the student's and teacher's lives for the better. They would be an invaluable asset to the studio environment, encouraging a more open flow of engagement.

0 Alyssa Mullen 16 Feb 2017

Screens would be extremely useful both because we have limited review spaces and because a lot of resources are wasted printing media that often gets thrown away the same day. The use of screens helps to facilitate a visual and collaborative environment, both of which are very important in the fields of architecture and education.

0 Sharon Wohl 16 Feb 2017

Really helpful for both teaching and for student exploration/ experimentation.

0 Ulrike Passe 15 Feb 2017

I am highly supportive of the proposal. Architecture design studio pedagogy requires one to one and small group interactions. I teach with energy and daylighting performance design tools, which require many timebased iterations and I have spent many hours looking with students in desk critics at their small laptop screens. It is essential for our design education to be able to directly interact with a student's work on a screen of larger size than the laptop. it is also important to walk a group of students in studio through a workflow for energy and daylighting performance tools. A screen would greatly benefit my design studio teaching in my required ARCH 601 sustainable design studio.

0 Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco 15 Feb 2017

Architecture is a visual discipline, the use of these screen is fundamental to our field.

1 Nicole Becker 15 Feb 2017

These screens would highly impact the potential our studios have. Having used these screens, I can agree that they advance the collaborative environment and allow for a better way of presenting and sharing information with ease as well as keeping with the technology we will find upon entering the profession.

1 Shelby Doyle 15 Feb 2017

Having large format screens in the studio and seminar space improved integration of technology and new media into the design process. It is important that students are exposed to developing technologies and that they have the opportunity to practice presentation skills in a format they will use throughout their careers.

1 Atalie Ruhnke 15 Feb 2017

The ability to communicate and share our ideas and content digitally is a skill that is increasingly valuable, not only in the academic setting, but in the profession as well. Learning to use the screens and developing our digital skills throughout our education is crucial to prepare us for professional careers.

1 Nicholas Raap 15 Feb 2017

Utilizing these screens in 3 different courses has drastically benefitted the way each course has transpired. The screens have allowed us more freedom in multiple aspects of our daily studio activities such as quickly presenting information both at critiques and informally (e.g. precedent or tutorial presentations) saving both time and money, as well as many other ways. There is no reason not to implement these screens into the current teaching infrastructure here at the College of Design.

1 Evan Harrison 15 Feb 2017

The ability to learn computer applications and design software requires visual learning. Having additional screens and monitors in the studio would help make the learning process much easier than the current method of gathering around a single computer screen.

1 Andrew Suiter 15 Feb 2017

This is important. Screens mean less time and money spent on printed media. Further integration and experience with digital presentation skills best mimics what is being done in the professional practice right now. These screens afford students the valuable opportunity to be prepared for the types of presentation situations they will experience regularly post-graduation. Are they 4K?

1 Megan Zeien 15 Feb 2017

The large format screens add a level of accessibility to design education. Sharing ideas quickly and effectively with these screens helps the collaborative studio environment that is now more digital-oriented. The presentation and flexibility aspects of this technology are very beneficial to my design communication skills.

1 Christopher Perez 15 Feb 2017

The implementation of these screens is vital to the success of the architecture department. In the age of digital communication, these screens will allow students to better develop the communication skills needed to better succeed.

2 Roman Chikerinets 14 Feb 2017

I highly support this idea; I often find it is extremely useful for communication with students during studio time and for them to be able to communicate their ideas as well.

1 David Cordaro 14 Feb 2017

I was skeptical at first if these screens would actually benefit my education, but after completing two courses with them, I can say that every class should have them. From saving students and professors printing time/money, creating a more collaborative/team based environment, and overall ease of use over a projector, these LCD screens really help to produce better student work and a better studio environment.

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