Design Studio Learning Environments

Peter Scupelli and Bruce Hanington

Studio-based design education is changing to include multidisciplinary design teams, geographically distributed teams, information technology, and new work styles. The design studio in universities is a physical place, a cultural place, and a social place. Activities are characterized by five factors: co-location, learning-by-doing, continuous access, integrative learning, and mimicking practice (Lawson & Dorst, 2009). A studio-based education ecological framework includes observable components, or “tools”, and pedagogical approaches used to construct design knowledge (Brandt, Cennamo, Douglas, Vernon, McGrath, & Reimer, 2011). In this ongoing research we are investigating the role of the design studio in design education.


Scupelli, P., & Hanington, B. (2014). An Evidence-Based Design approach for function, usability, emotion, and pleasure in studio redesign. Proceedings of the Design Research Society.