Do you work in an academic school and often find yourself as a minority subject fighting for students? Do you find that even though you have very talented design students coming into the Diploma years they often in the end do not choose Design Technology as it will not help them get into University or parents even persuade them it is not a useful subject? Well how about this for a quote to get people thinking:-

Lawyers. Accountants. Computer programmers. That’s what our parents encouraged us to become when we grew up. But Mom and Dad were wrong. The future belongs to a very different kind of person with a very different kind of mind.

There are obviously many pertinent points to make regarding this, and very important to use past sucesses of students entering excellent Universities and going onto great success after being inspired by their Design Technology couse. However it is also important to stress research and other resources that highlight above anything else the importance of creativity and design in the changing world of work in 2014. This summer I read a book by the well known author of ‘Drive’, Daniel Pink called ‘ A Whole New Mind’. I was surprised to find this book was written almost ten years ago – but it is a fantastic advert and persuasive argument for the importance of ‘design’ as one of six elements that will determine the success of students in the new competitive world of work:-

1. Not just function but also DESIGN. It’s no longer sufficient to create a product, a service, an experience, or a lifestyle that’s merely functional. Today it’s economically crucial and personally rewarding to create something that is also beautiful, whimsical, or emotionally engaging.

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The book gives a fabulous explanation of the ‘SATisation’ of the examination system and that design and creativity are hardly measured. I would argue that in fact the IB Diploma and a number of subjects in the Diploma can and do enhance creative thought unlike in any other exam programme that I know of – however none more so than Design Technology I believe.

So definitely a worthwhile read – maybe even as part of the options process do a parent workshop discussing this book and its implications – they provide a great worksheet / discussion guide that would certainly open up a great deal of students and parents minds as to what is and should be one of the most important subjects on their IB Diploma option choice list!