Rethinking materialities in higher education

Maarit Mäkelä, Teija Löytönen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Art, craft and design activities are fundamentally creative in nature, requiring the
implementation of ideas in the form of materially embodied artefacts. Within art and design education, initiation to the creative process is usually enhanced via a studio model where material experimentations are an integral part of learning processes.This case study explores materiality in learning from a relational perspective where material forces are at play in constituting learning: how learning is entangled with or an effect of the engagement with the materiality of places, environments and (organic) matter. We base our enquiry on an MA course called Design Exploration and Experimentation organized at Aalto University, Finland. The experiences of three students discussed in the article form the key data of the case study. By describing the relations between the experiences, environments and creative outcomes, the case study sheds light on the relevance of materiality in learning, especially in higher education.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241-258
Number of pages18
JournalArt, Design and Communication in Higher Education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • curriculum
  • design
  • education
  • experimentation
  • learning
  • material


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