Article | PATT 26 Conference; Technology Education in the 21st Century; Stockholm; Sweden; 26-30 June; 2012 | A Passion for Designing

Title:
A Passion for Designing
Author:
Stephanie Atkinson: Faculty of Education and Society, University of Sunderland, UK Angela Sandwith: Faculty of Education and Society, University of Sunderland, UK
Download:
Full text (pdf)
Year:
2012
Conference:
PATT 26 Conference; Technology Education in the 21st Century; Stockholm; Sweden; 26-30 June; 2012
Issue:
073
Article no.:
004
Pages:
39-46
No. of pages:
8
Publication type:
Abstract and Fulltext
Published:
2012-06-18
ISBN:
978-91-7519-849-1
Series:
Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings
ISSN (print):
1650-3686
ISSN (online):
1650-3740
Publisher:
Linköping University Electronic Press; Linköpings universitet


“Passion is the energy that comes from bringing more of you into what you do” (Rosengren; 2004)

In the school based subject of design and technology (D&T) a fundamental element is designing and making functional products using critical and creative thinking whilst developing skills in the use of a variety of processes and materials. The links between creativity; intrinsic motivation and passion have been well researched (e.g. Amabile; 1997; Leonard and Swap; 1999; Polanyi 1966). Goleman et al (1992) speak of creativity and intrinsic motivation as the urge to do something for the sheer pleasure of doing it rather than for a prize; and refer to passion’s importance in the mix as “ …the element that really cooks the creative stew is passion” (p.30).

Teachers of the subject need to be more then just ’enthusiastic’ about the process if they are to develop enthusiasm in their pupils that will sustain them through the exciting but sometimes arduous and difficult process required to achieve outcomes of which they and their teachers can be proud. The polemic work of Polayni (1958) and that of the psychologist Frijda (2000); closely link joy with intellectual passion; supporting the assertion that positive passions affirm that something is precious and that passion can be used as a determinant of what is of higher interest and great.

The intention of this research project; using an initial sample of forty-nine students and a non-probability purposive sample of ten students studying to become D&T teachers was to tease out the factors which appear to enable some students to be passionate about creating a product to a given brief; described by Csikszentmihalyi (1990; p.4) as “the state in which people are so involved in an activity that nothing else seems to matter; the experience itself is so enjoyable that people will do it even at great cost; for the sheer sake of doing it” whilst others from similar backgrounds and expectations; given the same brief; and in the same learning situation; do not reach this level of enthusiasm.

The data collection method used was an attitude scale and semi-structured interviews which were qualitatively analysed using HyperReasearch software in order to identify factors involved; with the intention of informing and improving the way we teach our students; to design; and about design; with the additional aim of improving their teaching of that activity once they become D&T teachers. Within the full paper results are discussed and tentative conclusions drawn.

Keywords: Designing; Passion; Design and Technology; D&T Teacher Training

PATT 26 Conference; Technology Education in the 21st Century; Stockholm; Sweden; 26-30 June; 2012

Author:
Stephanie Atkinson, Angela Sandwith
Title:
A Passion for Designing
References:

Amabile; T. M. (1997). “Motivating Creativity in Organizations: On Doing What You Love and Loving What You Do” in California Management Review 40; No. 1; p. 39-58.


Atkinson; S. (1997). Identification of some causes of demotivation amongst Key Stage 4 pupils studying design and technology; Ph.D. thesis; Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Newcastle University.


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Atkinson; S. (2003). ‘The relationship between learning style preference; attitude to learning; appropriate prior knowledge and achievement in the context of computer aided learning in electronics’ in: S. Armstrong et al (Eds.) Bridging Theory & Practice – European learning Styles Information network 8th Conference; Hull: Hull University; 29-40


Atkinson; S. (2007). ‘A study into Attitudes of D&T Teacher Trainees at Sunderland University to Cultural Diversity and Pluralism’. Sunderland: University Research Conference


Atkinson; S. (2009). ‘Are Design and Technology teachers able to meet the challenges inherent in the theme for this conference ‘D&T – A Platform for Success’?’ in: E. Norman (Ed.) Design and Technology Education: International Journal; 14 (3) 8-20


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Czikszentmihalyi; M. (1991). Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience. New York: Harper Collins.


Department for Education and Science and the Welsh Office; (1989). Design and Technology for Ages 5 to 16: Proposals. London: HMSO


Frijda; N. H. (2000). “The Psychologists’ Point of View” in Lewis; M. and Haviland-Jones; J. M. (eds). Handbook of Emotions (2nd ed). New York: The Guilford Press; pp. 59-74.


Goleman; D.; Kaufman; P. and Ray; M. (1992). The Creative Spirit. New York: Penguin Books.


Leonard; D. and Swap; W (1999) When Sparks Fly: Igniting Creativity in Groups. Boston; MA: Harvard Business School Press.


Likert; R. (1932) ‘A technique for the measurement of attitudes’; Archives of Psychology; 140


Miller; J. (2012) What is wrong with D&T? London: Royal Society of Arts. accessed March 2012 http://www.thersa.org/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/409507/RSA_Whats-Wrong- With-DT.pdf


Polanyi; M. (1958). Personal Knowledge: Towards a Post-Critical Philosophy. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.


Polanyi; M. (1966). The Tacit Dimension. New York: Anchor Doubleday.


Rosengren; C. (2004) The Occupational Adventure Guide: A travel guide to the career of your dreams. e-book accessed October 2011. http://www.passioncatalyst.com/oag/

PATT 26 Conference; Technology Education in the 21st Century; Stockholm; Sweden; 26-30 June; 2012

Author:
Stephanie Atkinson, Angela Sandwith
Title:
A Passion for Designing
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