General part – Master’s Degree in Design, Art and Handicrafts – Internet-Based Workshops 60MASTGN

Course Objectives

Course unit 1: The Aesthetic Creative Area (30 ECTS)

Students will:

  • through documentation of creative activities, show understanding for aesthetic-visual, material and functional effects.

  • gain insight into design processes on the basis of various approaches and working methods.

  • develop skills in documenting and presenting newly acquired knowledge through practical, aesthetic and creative work.

  • develop insight into the special characteristics of aesthetic experience, and creative processes as a form of understanding.

  • acquire insight into the theory of the subject art, and be able to view their own creative work and that of others in an artistic and cultural perspective.

  • acquire experience in viewing their own and others creative work in didactic and research perspectives.

Course unit 2: The Pedagogical and Didactic Area (12 ECTS)

Students will:

  • acquire insight into the foundation of philosophy and didactics, and the principal concepts of the subject.

  • gain knowledge of general curricula theory and developments and gain insight into the relevant subject curricula.

  • acquire insight into cultural understanding, cultural transference and culture-building.

  • gain knowledge of the teacher’s tasks in connection with creative work and practice.

  • be able to justify, plan and assess given teaching and educational tasks.

Course unit 3: Scientific Theory and Methodology Area (18 ECTS)

Students will:

  • acquire insight into the various scientific traditions.

  • gain insight into the relevant research methods.

  • use research methods in relation to both theoretical and practical material.

  • develop their critical ability and be able to assess relevant research reports.

  • gain experience with systematising and documenting research and development work.

Course Description

Course unit 1: The Aesthetic Creative Area (30 ECTS)

Course unit 1 consists of two areas, which mutually enrich each other:

a Creative and artistic work

  • Creative and artistic work based on one or more forms of expression such as images, sculpture and installation, utility objects and design, architecture and the physical environment

  • Creative and artistic work viewed in relation to idea, content, function and context illustrated through studies of form, colour, space and composition, as well as materials and techniques

  • Strategy and methods for creative and artistic work:

    • Awareness of one’s own position

    • Self as a research instrument

    • Intuitive and analytical approaches

    • Problematisation, delimiting and documentation of process and product.

bArt theory

  • Various positions in contemporary aesthetic thinking

  • Art theory related to forms of expression during the contemporary period and chosen historical period

  • Main trends of contemporary art

  • Special characteristics of the aesthetic area:

    • Art as a form of cognition: understanding and experiencing art

    • Perceiving and thinking

    • The importance of beauty

    • Aesthetic communication: Experience, analysis and understanding

  • The special characteristics of pictorial art, aesthetic objects and utility objects and architecture related to knowledge of:

    • Form, colour, space and composition – forms of expression and use

    • Materials, techniques and tools – forms of expression and use

Course unit 2: The Pedagogical and Didactic Area (12 ECTS)

Course unit 2 consists of four topics:

a Basic didactic problems

  • Main pedagogical trends and basic didactic problemsAn examination of important concepts such as:

    • Experience and action

    • Basic skills in the subject area

    • Education, knowledge and cultural transference

    • Creative activity

    • Aesthetic education

bCurriculum theory and knowledge of the subject

  • Construction of curricula and implementation

  • Analysis of plans and practice

  • History of the subject in recent times

c Cultural understanding, cultural transference and culture-building

  • Cultural theory and cultural understanding

  • Cultural transference, and dissemination of art

  • Culture-building (creative) activities

  • The double didactic aspect and formation of identity

d The teacher as organiser of the meeting between cultural material and creative and artistic work

  • The teacher’s task in disseminating culture and as a leader of the pupils’ creative and artistic work

  • Relevant perspectives on learning

  • School textbooks and learning tools

  • Supervision and assessment

Course unit 3: Scientific Theory and Methodology Area (18 ECTS)

Course unit 3 contains three topics in which both scientific theory and methodology are related to the special characteristics of design, art and handicrafts as a field of research.

a Knowledge of the most important trends in scientific theory

This topic focuses on the various fields of science:

  • Research in the field of the natural sciences

  • Research in the field of the humanities

  • Research in the field of social sciences

An examination of various approaches:

  • Positivism

  • Hermeneutics

  • Phenomenology

b Knowledge of the principal methods of research within the subject field

  • The research methods for the relevant subject areas

  • Design, art and handicrafts as a field of research, strategy and use of methodology

  • Design in the research process: choice of research question, theoretical foundation, methodology, methods of analysis and forms of documentation

  • Elementary statistics

cExamination of, and experience using, chosen methodology in R & D project

  • Collection of material for the student’s R & D project

  • Examination of specific methodology for the R & D project

  • Knowledge pertaining to drafting and documentation of the student’s R & D project.

  • Critical analysis of a specific research report

Learning Methods

Organisation, teaching and learning methods

The study programme is Internet based. The students will be able to keep contact with Telemark University College from their homes using the web-based learning platform Classfronter, and other Internet facilities such as Skype and MSN to communicate/talk with. The first workshop starts in early August.

The general part of the course is taught during the first, second and third semesters. The three course units, which the general part consists of, are different in scope and nature. Consequently, the teaching and learning methods and the organisation is varied. The course units compliment each other, and should be viewed in relation to each other and/or integrated. The teaching of the course units is partly organised as projects and partly as subject themes.

The teaching and learning methods include: individual work with guidance, group project with counselling, study groups, seminars and lectures. All the teaching and learning methods can take place both on-line or face-to-face at the workshops. Through the digital classroom, Classfronter, synchronous web conferences will be held in which the teacher and students ‘meet’ and see each other as they speak, and view and comment on texts and / or presentations. In addition, exercises and texts may be published and downloaded by students and teachers (asynchronous communication). As a supplement to the study programme, Internet facilities such as Skype and MSN may be used for daily, individual communication.

The course alternates between practical, aesthetic and creative work and studies of a more theoretical nature.

Course unit 1: The Aesthetic Creative Area (30 ECTS)

Three project assignments based mainly on creative and artistic work.

Project assignments 1 will be undertaken during the first semester. Project assignment 2 will be carried out during the second and third semesters. Project assignment 4 is a pilot project for the Master’s Thesis and will be undertaken during the third semester. Theory of art will be integrated into the project assignments and also studied separately. Perspectives from the Pedagogical and Didactic Area and the Scientific Theory and Methodology Area will also be included in the project assignments.

The teaching and learning methods will also include experience with creative work using various materials and different forms of expression depending on which approach is taken. Insight that has been gained will be documented systematically through design processes, products and reports. The alternation and interplay between artistic work and theoretical approaches related to the theory of art aims at creating a fruitful synthesis.

The work will be carried out in workshops, first and foremost at the students' home base in guiding and joint discussions using the Internet, but also on campus during the workshops. The theoretical topics will be taught during lectures, seminars and discussions, and in the students work involving course material.

Course unit 2: The Pedagogical and Didactic Area (12 ECTS)

This course unit is taught mainly during the third semester in the form of lectures and seminars presented via the Internet. Part of the material in this course unit should be viewed in relation to the project assignments described in course unit 1 during the first, second and third semesters. The course unit provides the premises, justification and possibilities of design, art and handicrafts in relation to education and teaching. This includes theoretical studies, but also reflection regarding the practice of the subject and its possibilities in a society that is constantly changing. Teaching of this course unit consists partly of Internet-based lectures and discussions and partly individual study.

Course unit 3: Scientific Theory and Methodology Area (18 ECTS)

Lectures and seminars are mainly presented via the Internet during the first semester. Aspects of both scientific theory and methodology are related to creative and artistic projects. Parts of the course unit material may be viewed in relation to project assignments 1 and 2 described in course unit 1. In the first and second semesters, candidates will gain methodological experience through an R & D methodology project (project assignment 3). This project will be related to schools and/or other similar institutions. A seminar will also be held concerning a critical analysis of a research report. Knowledge from this course unit will be integrated into project assignment 4 (the pilot project for the Master’s Thesis described under course unit I).

Obligatory requirements

  • Workshop sessions on campus (2-3 per semester) are obligatory. In these workshops all the students will contribute to the professional development of the group. In the case of absence, students will be required to contribute to the group in other ways, for example, by completing a written report or similar work.

  • Introduction to, and subject-related feedback/summation, of the course units/projects and chosen subject topics. This will be described in the period plans.

  • Group work including study groups

  • Seminars

  • Study trips

  • Attendance (minimum 1 day) at Masters students' public exhibition (second or fourth semester)

Obligatory parts of the course require 80% participation.

Assessment Methods

Continuous assessment

Course unit: The Aesthetic Creative Area:

  • Project assignment 1. First semester. A part-assessment: Pass/fail.

  • Art theory: Individual written assignment, 3 days. Second semester. Part assessment. Pass/fail.

Course unit: Scientific Theory and Methodology Area

  • Project assignment 3, R & D project undertaken in groups: written report, visual and oral presentation. Second semester. part-assessment: Pass/fail. Seminar related to a critical analysis of a research report. Second semester. Part-assessment. Pass/fail.

Students will receive continual assessment of their assignments. The part-assessments must be assessed as passed by the subject teacher(s) before the candidate may take the final examinations.

Final assessment

The final examinations and assignments will provide the basis for the final grade which will be graded from A to F, where A is the highest grade and E is the lowest passing grade. Assessment criteria and instructions concerning the grade scale have been drafted into a document.

Course unit: Aesthetic Creative Area:

  • Creative and artistic work: Project assignment 2. Second and third semesters. 20%.

  • Creative and artistic work: Project assignment 4 (pilot project for Master’s Thesis), with oral examination. Third semester. 40%

Course unit: The Pedagogical and Didactic Area and Scientific Theory and Methodology Area:

  • Written assignment, 4 days, third semester. 40%.

A total grade will be given for a successfully completed general part in which each course unit must receive a passing grade. The final assessment represents 60 ECTS. This must be completed before work may be started on the Master’s Thesis.

Minor adjustments may occur during the academic year, subject to the decision of the Dean

Publisert av / forfatter Ella Melbye <>, last modified Ian Hector Harkness - 09/09/2010