Teaching design from a distance: the deviantArt case of Virtual Design Studio

Irene Mavrommati, Panagiotis Fotaris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


For over 70 years studio-based learning (SBL) continues to have a powerful influence on the creation of environments for teaching and learning in art and design on an academic level. A similar philosophy is followed by the Virtual Design Studio (VDS), a form ofvirtualworkshop that addresses the needs of online design education. The increasing exploitation of social network platforms (SN) as instruments of learning has also lead to their integration into VDS, due to the fact that these technologies transfer communication, teamwork, social engagement, responsibility, and classroom interaction away from the design tutors to the participants. The present paper discusses a pilot use of thedeviantArtplatform - an open and dynamic online community that promotes artisticexpression,facilitates cross-culturaldialogue,and features work in a variety of disciplines - as a VDS environment. This allowed design work to be posted and commented on a public platform as a means to facilitate peer learning and distance assessment. The conducted study facilitated a distance learning course in Graphic Design of the Hellenic Open University (HOU). At the end of the academicyearan evaluation was carried out in order to assess its validity as a distance teaching method for design and identify its weaknesses, strengths and improvement opportunities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-26
Number of pages3
JournalIEEE Learning Technology Newsletter
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2012


  • Virtual design studio
  • social networks
  • technology enhanced learning
  • peer learning


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