Drawing to Learn

Why does drawing matter?

Drawing and other visual methods such as collage have an important role to play in every discipline, not just those such as art and design with which they are usually associated, but in science, social sciences, clinical education and many other subjects.

Some of the most common potential functions of drawing include:

  • Observational drawing – to sharpen perception and make rapid and accurate records of key data in almost any situation.
  • Conceptual drawing and diagramming – helps students visualise ideas and processes, compare their understanding and develop critical thinking skills;reinforces memory.
  • Collaborative drawing and image making activities – can develop communication skills,  encourage reflection on experience, professional and personal development planning.

Drawing for Wellbeing

During the pandemic, we have all had to adjust to the practical and emotional challenges of remote working and social isolation. Finding creative ways to approach this situation is even more important than usual. Do try out some of the suggestions in our collection of ideas and tips from staff and students  on the theme “Drawn to Life: Creativity and Wellbeing” – originally published as part of our Big Draw at Brighton 2019 celebration,  For instance, you could try keeping a visual diary of this very unusual time, make mini-zines to help capture key ideas or just take 5 minutes a day to focus on something new.  If you are also looking after children, they may enjoy the activities as well. We hope you find them helpful. There are also many relevant ideas in the general Drawing to Learn resources below.

Drawing to Learn Booklets

book coversWe published a set of four booklets to support the use of drawing in higher education.

Each title is addressed to a broad cluster of disciplines and offers a brief introduction to the ways in which drawing and other visual methods may be used to support undergraduate and postgraduate learning and research.

You can download the booklets via the links below.

We hope the ideas and examples will encourage lecturers and supervisors to explore the possibilities in their own teaching. Please contact Pauline Ridley p.ridley@brighton.ac.uk if you would like to discuss this in more detail.

Other resources

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