Reading Educating the Reflective Practitioner (Schon, 1987) and came across this piece of text which sums up beautifully how difficult all this design education business is :
"The paradox of learning a really new competence is this: that a student cannot at first understand what he need to learn, can learn it only by educating himself, and educate himself only by beginning to do what he does not yet understand."
But at the same time, we know that it is possible and (for me) Schon comes closest to describing the 'thing' we try to do by quoting an imaginary studio master :
"I can tell you that there is something you need to know, and with my help you may be able to learn it. But I cannot tell you what it is in a way you now understand. I can only arrange for you to have the right sorts of experiences for yourself. You must be willing, therefore, to have these experiences. Then you will be able to make an informed choice about whether you wish to continue. If you are unwilling to step into this new experience without knowing ahead of time what it will be like, I cannot help you. You must trust me."
So I wonder whether we should maybe inscribe this above the doors of U101?
But it is also a two-way pact. At the same time, the trust placed by the willing student must be respected and repaid by the teacher. Shcon, quoting Quist :
"It has to be a kind of contract between the two. The teacher must be open to challenge and must be able to defend his position. The student, in turn, must be willing to suspend his disbelief, to give the teachers suggestion a chance ... "
Here endeth the lesson...
Schon, D. A. (1987). Educating the Reflective Practitioner (First., p. 345). San Francisco: John Wiley and Sons.