Intl J of Designs for Learning: Special Issue on Designs of Spaces for Learning (June 2013)

Theme: Designs of Spaces for Learning
Deadline for submissions: 1 June 2013

Environments for learning take diverse forms and include schools, colleges and universities, libraries, museums, and also virtual spaces where learning occurs.  Creating these spaces involves complex decision-making and significant process of thought and planning. You are invited to share your knowledge in an article to be published by the International Journal of Designs for Learning that describes your professional experiences in designing a space where knowledge is imparted and lives changed.

Guest Editor: Jill Pable, Ph.D.

The International Journal of Designs for Learning is a multidisciplinary, peer-reviewed online journal is dedicated to publishing descriptions of artifacts, environments and experiences created to promote and support learning in all contexts by designers in any field.

The IJDL Library of Congress ISSN is 2159-449X.

The journal provides a venue for designers to share their knowledge-in-practice through rich representations of their designs and detailed discussion of decision-making. The aim of the journal is to support the production of high-quality precedent materials and to promote and demonstrate the value of doing so. Audiences for the journal include designers, teachers and students of design and scholars studying the practice of design. This journal is a publication of the Association for Educational Communications and Technology.

Articles will be written as ‘design cases’. A design case is somewhat similar to a trade journal case study, but is more in-depth, more focused on an issue of interest, and written from the narrative perspective of someone who knows the project first-hand as a design participant or close, ongoing observer.

What is a design case?

Is a description of a real artifact or experience that has been intentionally designed. It describes a precedent element or situation that have the potential to offer teaching and learning opportunities.
Offers in-depth explanations of design rationales and actions taken within the parameters of the 5000 word limit of the text. Transparency of the design process through detailed description is important such that the reader can deeply understand and potentially empathize with the situation, realizing relationships to their own understanding. Detailed description asks and responds to questions which might include:

–What key decisions were made?
–At what points in the design process did these decisions arise?
–Who was involved in the making of these decisions?
–What was the rationale or reasoning behind these decisions?
–How were key design decisions judged to be useful or not?
–What key changes were made during the design process?
–Why was the proposed design solution believed to be the best?
–Addresses an element of the case that makes it particularly interesting and that is emphasized or covered in detail.
–Author is often a participant (instead of an outsider), and deeply involved in the design process as a member of the design team or as a solo designer. Or, if the author is not the designer, the author is immersed in the project while it is happening or via other means (such as study of its artifacts and records, discussions with stakeholders/ participants, and/or experiencing what has been designed) over a period of time. The degree of author involvement is clearly described.
–May discuss its parallels to a framework, theory or other guiding influence, but does not have to reference such a source, nor arise from it.

For an example of an architectural design-oriented design case, see
For further deep description of design cases from which the above description was derived, see Boling, E. (2010). The need for design cases: disseminating design knowledge. International Journal of Designs for Learning 1(1).
Smith, K. (2010). Producing the rigorous design case. International Journal of Designs for Learning 1(1).
Howard, C. (2011). Writing and rewriting the instructional design case: a view from two sides. International Journal of Designs for Learning 2(1).

Further design case articles on the topic of instructional technology and learning are located at

Writing and submitting a design case Author Guidelines are available at

Articles should be submitted using the article template available at Suggested headings or structure (recognizing these are not strict and can be evolved/interpreted with exception of abstract):
(adapted from Labov, W. (1982). Speech actions and reactions in personal narrative. In Analyzing Discourse: Text and Talk, edited by D. Tannen, 219-247. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 1982. & Dohr, J. & Portillo, M. (2011). Design Thinking for Interiors. NY: Wiley.)

–Orientation and context of the situation
–The design intervention or development narrative
–Evaluation, significance and meaning
–Resolution or outcome
–Coda, summation or relevance to readers
–References (optional)

Principal articles of 3000-5000 words, including notes and references, with up to 5 illustrations are invited, and should be submitted by June 1, 2013 to

Questions on submittals may be directed to Dr. Jill Pable at jpable@fsu.eduor 850-645-6831.


About Fil Salustri
I'm a design methodologist and Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada. Adjectives that describe me include: secular humanist, meritocrat, and long-winded. Some people call me a positivist too, as if that were a bad thing. Go figure. My real home page is

One Response to Intl J of Designs for Learning: Special Issue on Designs of Spaces for Learning (June 2013)

  1. Kahnge Raymond says:

    Thanks a lot for your informative post’s Prof. Fil, hope I get the chance to say so in person someday!

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