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MA - Design Practice in Design in Education

Pathway : Design in Education

People with a high level of personal mastery live in a continual learning mode. They never ‘arrive’…. Personal mastery is not something you possess. It is a process. It is a lifelong discipline. People with a high level of personal mastery are acutely aware of their ignorance, their incompetence, and their growth areas. And they are deeply self-confident. Paradoxical? Only for those who do not see that ‘the journey is the reward.” - Peter Senge

Future learning spaces -‘A Pattern Language’ (Inspired by Christopher Alexander’s): Visual Thinking.

In the rapidly changing world of the 21st century, emerging paradigms of learning and education are providing an urgent impetus for professionals to re-define themselves and their practice. Today and tomorrow’s professionals face new demands and expectations in how they navigate complex realties and opportunities to spearhead both transformation for themselves and within the world of learning.

How do we nurture within ourselves a consciousness to adapt, embrace uncertainties, become facilitators, and leaders of transformation?

How can a design disposition enable an imaginative inquiry into educational practices?

How do we go beyond personal and professional schisms, discourses of scale, efficiency and outcomes?

We envision the specialisation in Design in Education as a learning opportunity for education practitioners who seek to meet the dynamic and changing needs of learning societies and a vehicle for supporting their critical and reflective practice. Therefore, the vision is to develop professionals in education and allied fields of learning who are:

  • lifelong inquirers about their self and practice
  • designers of new learning worlds
  • creative innovators within emerging educational paradigms and frameworks
  • active and networked members in communities of reflective practitioners and
  • seekers of personal mastery.

This course conceives of a future of learning that is foregrounded in ideas of complexity & systems thinking, slowness and contemplative practices. It is conceptualized to provide opportunities for professionals to nurture a design sensibility in the new and emerging areas such as maker spaces, digital media learning within universities and colleges who are providing design-based degrees, and as a stepping stone for individuals wanting to lead NGOs, CSRs and other institutions that intersect development and education.

The course is relevant to anyone currently working in areas concerned with communities of learning be it government and civil services, education providers, policy makers, foundations working with CSR, edupreneurs both in formal and non-formal sectors, teachers and heads of department in schools and colleges, educational start-ups and NGOs. It includes practitioners in allied educational fields such as museums, interpretation centres, galleries, zoos, publishing houses and content designers for textbooks and other educational materials.

Practising Discernment: Profession, Practice, Skill, Vocation & Personal Mastery.

Key Values

"Life will not be a pyramid with the apex sustained by the bottom. But it will be an oceanic circle whose center will be the individual always ready to perish for the village, the latter ready to perish for the circle of villages, till at last the whole becomes one life composed of individuals, never aggressive but ever humble, sharing the majesty of the oceanic circle of which they are integral units."
- M. K. Gandhi

The specialisation in Design in Education course is rooted in the following core values:

  • Openness and Unlearning
  • Slowness and Wholeness
  • Empathy and Resilience
  • Participation and Collaboration
  • Mindfulness and Introspection
  • Equality and Diversity

Contemplative practices include introduction to different forms of meditation, art therapy and journaling to unfold inquiry & slow thought

Who should apply for the pathway in Design in Education course?

The pathway in Design in Education is especially designed for individuals from the following arenas of work:

K-12 Sector (national and international schools): Teachers, institutional leaders, curriculum designers and instructional designers. Also, for specialists, advisors, educational consultants, innovators and entrepreneurs who work with schools.

Higher Education Sector: Design educators in design schools, lecturers, professors, institutional leaders, curriculum designers and instructional designers.

Non-formal Education Sector: Content developers, program developers and facilitators in formal and informal learning centres, art & craft collectives, environmental organizations, publishing houses etc.

Corporate/for-profit education sector: Content developers, institutional designers, instructional designers, trainers from publishing houses, training units, entrepreneurial ventures in the fields of digital platforms & applications

Modes of Learning offered by the pathway in Design in Education

The pathway in Design in Education course is a full time research based course that allows practitioners (both novice and experienced) to develop and extend their professional practice. It is offered in four modes of participation of onsite studios and tutorials with practice based research in a field project.

Click on image for enlarged view.

Notes on modes of participation:

1. Course Work

Participation in full time coursework through 2 years
This mode is designed for those practitioners who seek onsite guidance through studios, workshops and short projects on a regular basis. Field practice will be encouraged through internship as well as guided research within the learning units.

2. Practice Based

Option 1: Two weeks per semester of induction followed by guided practice based study
This mode is designed for practitioners with a strong inclination for independent study and for whom periodic short-term intensive onsite study period is most viable. Practitioners would need to plan for two weeks of study at Srishti, Bangalore at the start of each semester. This period includes a course overview, introduction to Phase 1 of the semester along with guidelines for practice based research and field based assignments.

Option 2: Five weeks OR seven weeks per academic year of induction followed by guided practice based study
This mode is designed for practitioners for whom one longer intensive period of onsite study each academic year is preferable. Those who choose 5 weeks of onsite participation will complete the first phase of the odd semester and obtain an introduction to the even semester learning units along with guidelines for practice based research and field based assignments. Those who select the 7 week mode can avail of two weeks of workshop at Srishti towards their course electives.

Option 3: 9 months of coursework commencing from the inception of the course followed by project or guided practice based study
This mode is designed for practitioners from international settings. It is also open for practitioners from India. The design facilitates the completion of coursework of the first semester along with Phase 1 of semester 2. In addition, practitioners will be encouraged to find and work on a project. Guidelines for practice based research and field based assignments for the subsequent period will be provided.

Course Structure

  • Disciplinary Studies
  • Trans-disciplinary Projects
  • Theory and Understanding Units
  • Practice
  • Self-Directed Inquiry/Research
  • Knowledge Enhancement (Ability or Skills)

Learning Approaches

The specialisation in Design in Education foregrounds pedagogies such as Slow Design, Play and Story, Mindfulness and Making. It is designed to cater to diverse learning styles and draws upon principles of Universal Design for Learning both in its core components and learning experiences for students. The course is designed for students to experience the potential and power of:

  • Making, Mindfulness and Reflective Practice
  • Compassionate, Critical and Collaborative Learning Communities
  • Interdisciplinary and Trans-disciplinary Approaches
  • Personal and Professional Mastery

This course will provide opportunities for educators to be facilitators, designers, DIYers (do-it-yourself) and DIWOers (do-it-with-others), curators, hackers, gamers, artists, digital natives, storytellers, travellers and critical and creative thinkers.

Capability Sets


  • Generative learning (e.g. conceptual sketches, prototypes, journals, discussion forums, digital platforms, podcasts, videocasts, construction of proto-theory etc) through questions, drawings, play, dialogues, reason, imagination, beauty and aesthetics.
  • Adapt and self- revitalise by seeking new experiences, engaging with diverse traditions of thought, experiment and reconfigure own practice
  • Go beyond vulnerabilities by setting & sustaining personal purpose, goals & vision pertinent to own reality, in formal and informal settings
  • Practice inclusive and humanising pedagogies through participative approaches (facilitation, co-design, co-create & DIWO) and emergent and wholeness disposition versus end driven

Framing Practice- Hoshin Kanri (Setting directions/compass) process to develop portfolio of practice and capstone proposal


Graduates of the specialisation in Design in Education course will be equipped to work:

Within the K-12 Sector (in national and international schools) as

  • Teachers/Institutional Leaders
  • Curriculum Designers/ Instructional Designers
  • Specialist/ Advisors/ Educational Consultants
  • Innovators/ Entrepreneurs

Within the Higher Education Sector as

  • Design Educators in Design Schools
  • Lectures/ Professors/Institutional Leaders
  • Curriculum Designers/ Instructional Designers

Within the Non-formal Education Sector (in formal and informal learning centres, art & craft collectives, environmental organizations, publishing houses etc) as

  • Content Developers
  • Program Developers
  • Facilitators

Corporate/for-profit education sector (publishing houses, training units, entrepreneurial ventures in the fields of digital platforms & applications) as

  • Content Developers
  • Institutional Designers
  • Instructional Designers
  • Trainers

Alumni Learning Experiences

Links below offers a snapshot into the learning experiences of students currently enrolled in the program:

Aparna Vinod : and

Bindu Chandana :

Junuka Deshpande :

Kavita Arvind : 

Preethi Vaidyanathan : 

Riya Banik :

Sonia Jose :

Tulip Sinha :

Vibha Iyer :

Alumni Profiles

Our alumni Alisha and Lopa have forged innovative and brave initiatives in Design in Education. We are proud to share some of their work here.

Alisha Panjwani is a design educator and STEM Teacherpreneur. After graduating from Srishti, she went on to do her M.S in Media Arts and Science from the Lifelong Kindergarten Group, MIT Media Lab. Alisha currently runs her own studio lab SEEDS at the Acera school in Winchester, Massachusetts. She has also co-founded Duct Tape Network which is a hands-on maker club that encourages children to use open creation and make meaningful design. Alisha has won awards and fellowships for her innovative approach to both design and education.

Lopa Shah is on the Board of Academic Council and heads the Dolphin International School in Kashmir. A designer of learning, facilitator, educator and artist, she is driven to designing educational experiences for a range of socio-economic communities. Lopa has also founded and runs a practice-based research initiative ‘Native’ which designs and executes educational programs.

Disciplinary Intersections

This specialisation is informed by the following learning disciplines: