Is Design Education Failing Our Students?

28 feb 18

Is design education failing our students?

How big is the gulf between education and Industry – and are millennial graduates equipped with the know-how to enter the working world?

A recent article about the relevance of a degree on saw interesting questions raised surrounding design education and how some believe that it’s failing the creative industry. One theme which always appears when this question is presented is that ‘education doesn’t correlate with experience’.

Josh Hudson, 3fD’s current design intern and second year product design student at Coventry University had an interesting take. Having been at 3fD for nearly a year on our internship programme, Josh feels he’s discovered what it’s really like to be challenged in the industry and we asked him if his education so far had prepared him for the opportunity.

"Overall, university gives me a platform for my curiosity to thrive and my skills to follow. It helps develop my enthusiasm and passion for the design environment. However, I would like more science-focused teaching to prepare me for the manufacturing requirements of the industry. This is something I am and will be exposed to in the future but haven’t been educated on as part of my degree".

Filmmaker and author Paul Wyatt, who is an advocate of real-world experiences in education, says: There isn't anything wrong with design education, it's just that it can't replicate the motivating fear of a client deadline, or the experience of working in an industry with people of different ages, abilities and opinions.

So are design degrees preparing students enough for a world outside of education, where they’ll have to work in a highly demanding and every changing Industry? 

What are your thoughts? Is design education failing the creative industries?