For Patrick Langer, studying the Master of Design is a case of the teacher becoming the student.
He’s been teaching for the past decade and currently heads up the Arts and Design department at a Canberra secondary school. Some projects relating to innovative design processes and design education he’s been part of in the last few years sparked his interest in furthering his postgraduate education.
Patrick decided on the ANU School of Art and Design after researching relevant programs around Australia. Apart from the convenient location, he was won over by the Master of Design convenors.
“I felt they had a very unique and progressive approach to the area of design, where they balanced craftsmanship, philosophy and research,” he says.
“I also think it is pretty exciting to be part of the future of the School of Art and Design with its new Design program.”
One unit Patrick has taken which has really challenged him in a positive way is Multiples and Production. It’s made him rethink his approach to design.
“As a designer you often forget to see the bigger picture of what you do and the potential impacts and at a range of levels,” he explains.
“For example, you might feel like your responsibilities end when you finish or resolve your designs.
“This subject makes you examine your role in this context, particularly in terms of social and ethical responsibilities at all stages of the design’s life cycle.”
Patrick foresees that he’ll keep teaching when he completes his Masters degree: “I intend to do exactly what I’m doing now – just a little bit better.”
He’s hoping that the knowledge he gains will push his teaching into new and innovative directions.
“I am always trying to become a more effective and knowledgeable teacher each year, and I know this program is allowing me to do that.”