There have been many debates and discussions suggesting that there are issues with how the public perceives Interior Design as a Profession. There is a critical need in educating the public and future generations on what the profession is, and how it benefits the public’s health, safety, welfare, and quality of life. In order to connect with the public new digital tools are used as a medium of facilitating the creative design process.
The presentation discusses two community outreach projects. First, the 4H Roundup: an annual event where 4-H youth (~10-16 years) come to campus and participate in a variety of workshops and competitions. In the program described, the students were taught how to use sketchup for Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) as well as 3D printing. The second program was Grandparent University. Grandparent University is an annual event where members of the alumni association (grandparents), bring legacies (grandchildren, 8-13 years) to campus and participate in a variety of intergenerational workshops and campus activities. In our two day workshop, they looked at how to model with skethcup, and used that model in AR, VR and 3D printing. As the culmination, they were given a small design exercise where they designed the interior of a dorm room. (gpu.mxrlab.org).
Research is an integral part of our profession as educators. The mixed reality lab (mxrlab.org) at Oklahoma State University was established with the primary goal of facilitating research that use tools such as AR, VR, 3D scanning, Motion Capture technology and 3D
prototyping. The Lab is housed in the College of Human Sciences, and is affiliated with the Department of Design Housing and Merchandising. Research carried out in the lab ranges from technology related research on older adults, technology use in design education and design practice. In one of the projects that we are conducting at the moment, we are developing an AR
mobile application for older adults with cognitive disabilities. In another project, we are looking at how virtual reality can be used in assessing the cognitive load imposed by colors and textures used in hotel rooms. We have also conducted research on how the creative design process is affected by the use of VR tools as compared to AR tools.
In the presentation some examples of how these digital tools are used in educating interior design students are shown. The examples are focused on using 3D printing and VR technology in design. The intention of the educational exercises was to experiment with methods of using these new digital tools through cost effective solutions such as google cardboard. Our research has shown that the tools used, improve the students learning experience, as well as enhance the creative design process.
We have collaborated with the community and tried to educate the community of the importance of creativity as well as interior design and connect with them through digital media. As mentioned in the presentation “creativity is contagious” and the medium that we used to transmit creativity is through digital media.