“Everything comes together”: Students’ collaborative development of a professional dialogic practice in architecture and design education

Jacob Davidsen*, Thomas Ryberg, Jonte Bernhard

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Previous studies of engineering and design students found that they are less competent than professionals in managing iterative processes, working with ill-structured problems and integrating objects and materials into their design process. Accordingly, there is a broad interest in understanding how students learn to design collaboratively and how they are becoming professionals. In this paper, we explore how a group of architectural engineering students are collaboratively developing a dialogic practice, which resembles how professionals work. We base this analysis on video extracts of a group of students preparing for a formal design review session by asking: What are the characteristics of students’ dialogic practice in a collaborative design project? Does it develop into a professional dialogic practice? Based in embodied interaction analysis of the video extracts, we show how this professional dialogical practice is developed using bodily, material and historical resources, rather than only being manifested in verbal discourse. We argue that mastering these dialogic practices is an important part of becoming a professional. Our analysis shows that the students are oriented to the tactile and kinaesthetic aspects of their collaborative work, they engage in collaborative embodied design activities and they integrate the history of the design process by repurposing materials in their current activity. We also argue that our methodological orientation to the students’ interactional work allows us to see how they develop a dialogic practice better than existing studies using protocol analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100678
JournalThinking Skills and Creativity
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2020

Bibliographical note

Part of special issue: SI: Dialogic pedagogies
Edited by Eva Vass


  • Collaboration
  • Embodiment
  • Engineering education
  • Problem Based Learning
  • Professional dialogic practice


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