Using design charrettes in interior design education to improve learning outcomes and collaboration with professionals

Linda N. Nubani, Suk Kyung Kim, Hebatalla Nazmy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Research shows that interior design graduates who join the workforce are not properly prepared to collaborate with professionals, even though the ability to collaborate is one of the most sought-after skills among employers. Therefore, the importance of collaboration with related professions has been increasingly emphasized in interior design education. This study discusses the use of different strategies that focus on building the collaborative skills of students in interior design programs. It also focuses on whether building design charrettes into interior design studios is the best way to address issues within the discipline, increase collaboration with professionals, and improve the quality of students’ work. The target of this study was the capstone project for an accredited interior design program at a university in the United States. The program has developed a partnership with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to meet three objectives: (1) offer students the opportunity to work on real projects, (2) interact with students during site visits and midpoint and final presentations, and (3) participate in a one-day design charrette in which staff members from the department with different areas of expertise give feedback on students’ work. Students’ experiences and perceptions were evaluated using a post-charrette questionnaire. Statistical analysis using descriptive statistics and regression models showed that students’ preparedness for and satisfaction with the design charrette were interrelated. The effects of the design charrette were evaluated positively. The findings also suggest that design charrettes should be actively integrated into interior design studios to improve collaboration; enhance students’ confidence in specific knowledge about building structure, accessibility, and creativity; and improve the quality of students’ work. Recommendations for future work are presented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)218-234
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Architectural and Planning Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Sept 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This project was funded by the Michigan DNR for the MSU-DNR Sustainable Park Planning Partnership. This partnership has been ongoing since October 2011.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, Locke Science Publishing Company, Inc.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Architecture
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Urban Studies


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