Damian Chapman

MPhil work

An investigation into the factors that hinder and enhance learning within online and digital contexts from a design perspective.

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Engagement in online communities is changing dramatically, from a generation of desktop computer-users to mobile online-users engaging with new forms of collaboration and interaction. Consequently, there is a gap in knowledge and a growing need for innovation in contemporary online learning design. It is within this area that my doctoral research seeks to intervene. Commencing with a comprehensive assessment of factors that hinder and enhance learning within online/digital contexts, it will go on to consider what Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) might have to learn from game design, thereby offering original insights into how online interface design and usability can be improved.


Contemporary game design is increasingly defined by a range of visionary narratives and fully realized story-worlds that stimulate players, and by the imaginative navigation and graphic interface design utilised to guide users around their environments. Highly sophisticated interaction design is essential to the behavioural and responsive user-experience conversations in this context. In comparison, traditional and current online learning environments are rarely remarkable in terms of their interaction design, way-finding or user experience. By redesigning online and mobile educational courses in the light of insights gleaned from game design, we may be able to dramatically enhance user experience, with a view to improving learning and engagement.


On the basis of a critical evaluation of how communication technologies and practices have evolved to date, and informed by near-future indications in respect of those currently developing, I seek to anticipate and problematise new ways of communicating, and to pursue the possibilities they may afford. This includes how these new communication environments, (narrative-based interface design, augmented reality and others) will complement each other and impact experiences and conversations around interaction.


Recent advances in TEL software have supported shifts in mobile learning through the building of a more visual culture to connect and engage students in new learning communities. I aim to research and build on new insights in both these fields through the development of a ‘designerly’ approach to elicit new knowledge about Higher Educational learner cultures, using social media and game design as initial channels for changing the experience of the digital student. The research begins with an initial review and assessment of the potential to advance existing platforms, followed by the identification of requirements for future interface and interaction design to enhance learning. I aim to develop a holistic approach that considers a range of sensory inputs, how these combine ­using cognitive models of the observer - and how they eventuate in user-responses through outgoing language and gestures.


Using a human-centered approach, I will break down the research into co-design phases. These will be created initially through participatory design workshops that will enable the building of a series of case-studies to develop conversations that build new knowledge to establish interaction toolsets. These in turn will be tested and applied to a learning environment to enable new forms of interactivity, build imaginative navigation, graphic interface design, enhance online narratives and build stimulating experiences for future communities of learners.


Key terms:

Human-centered approach, Online learning, Game theory, Interaction design, Circularity.

Info

  • MPhil

    School

    School of Design

    Programme

    Global Innovation Design, 2016–

  • Design is a defining human achievement and the operating system of human understanding and advancement.

    Damian Chapman has a lifelong ambition and dedication to Design education’s ability to profoundly change people’s lives and their future potential.

    Evidenced in the unceasing creation and management of design educational policies and undergraduate and masters programmes at University of the Arts, London, University for the Creative Arts, and University of West London. Including MA Advertising, Branding and Communication, MA Luxury Design, Innovation and Brand Management.

    Currently and in synchrony with being UWL’s Head of Design, Damian is engaged in doctoral research at the RCA in the School of Design. Pursuing disruptive and future design educational technologies in the form of 'An investigation into factors that hinder and enhance learning within online and digital contexts from a design perspective’ - Supervised by Dr. Jonathan Edelman and Dr John Stevens.

    Using a Human-centered approachhe is breaking down the corpus of the research into co-design phases. These will be created initially through participatory design workshops that enable the building of a series of case-studies to develop conversations. These build new knowledge and establish new interaction toolsets that in turn will be tested and applied to a learning environment and enable new forms of interactivity, build imaginative navigation, graphic interface design, enhance online narratives and build stimulating experiences for future communities of learners.

    Previous research includes User-driven Design Strategies. London School of Film, Media and Design Research (2016) and Translating Medical Intervention via a Cloud-based Design Framework (2015)

    As a Design professional and working with long term colleague and friend Ian Forsyth, they have created numerous campaigns for advertising and design projects spanning 20 years – including fashion imagery to still-life, drinks and brand focused FMCG campaigns working with a range of international design agencies including: Allied International Designers, Design Bridge, Fitch, Landor, Siebert Head and Wolff Olins

    Damian believes that creativity, energy and value-driven design thinking are the key to new initiatives and creative campaigns that can change attitudes and connect a contemporary public through socially responsible and sustainable ideas.

  • Degrees

  • MA Fine Art, Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, University of the Arts London, 1999; PGCert Teaching, Learning & Communication, University of the Arts London, 2005; BA Hons Fine Art: Printmaking & Photomedia, Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, University of the Arts London, 1996
  • Experience

  • • Deputy Head of School / Head of Design: London School of Film, Media & Design, University of West London, 2013 to present; • Design Consultant: UX & UI Specialist, STEM Research Collaboration between Eamus Halpin at Horizon Strategic Partners, Southampton University’s Complete Fertility Unit in the Department of Medicine and Cardiff University’s School of Psychology, 2014–15; • MA Programme Leader for Epsom Campus, University for the Creative Arts 2007–13; • MA Coordinator: PGT Design & Comms Portfolio, Farnham Campus, University for the Creative Arts, 2005–7; • Art Director/Photographer/Designer, IFD Studio, 1987–2007; • Pathway Leader, PGC in Fine Art: Printmaking, Central Saint Martins College Of Art and Design, University of the Arts London 2003–5
  • Conferences

  • (2016) Damian Chapman and Mark Owen, 'User-driven Design Strategies', London School of Film, Media and Design Research and Doctoral Symposium; (2015) 'Translating Medical Intervention via a Cloud-based Design Framework', Ealing School of Art, Design & Media Symposium; (2013) "Leveraging the fuzzy front end: Encouraging radical innovation", 7th International Conference on Design Principles & Practices, Chiba University in Japan, with Dr Cameron Watt, Damian Chapman & Waris Misbah. Radical Innovation; (2013) Chair & Producer, ‘Seeds’ PG Symposium at University for the Creative Arts, Epsom; (2012) 'Customer Value and Lean Operations in Masters Education', with Dr Cameron Watt, Jannis Angelis and Damian Chapman.; (2012) 'An Enterprise Intervention in Arts Education – the Creative Challenge' with Uwe Derksen and Damian Chapman, The European League of Institutes of the Arts: Teachers’ Academy Porto, Portugal; (2012) 'Added Value: Informing Employability and Entrepreneurship Through PDP Research in the Creative Industries', UCA Learning & Teaching Conference, British Library; (2011) 'A Service Approach To Course Development' with Dr Cameron. Watt, Dr Philip Ely & Damian Chapman, The International Conference on Engineering and Product Design Education, City University, London; (2011) “Research, What's in it for You?', UCA Learning & Teaching Conference, British Library, London