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MA Professional Practices


Pathway : Design in Education

“Reflection in action is a rigorous professional process involving acknowledgement of and reflection on uncertainty and complexity in one’s practice leading to ‘legitimate form of professional knowing.” - David Schon

Building wireframes for a digital platform to promote conversations amongst educators, parents and public in general, in the context of NEP 2020: A design challenge to initiate reading and interpreting educational policies for advocacy.


Professional Practices-Design in Education will meet the dynamic and changing needs of learning societies by developing and enhancing professionals, researchers and practitioners in education and allied fields of learning to be designers and facilitators of new learning worlds.

Professional Practices-Design in Education responds to the expectations placed on educators, education providers and allied fields: for creative and contextual practice, to build and expand design sensibilities and to serve the dynamic learning needs of communities.

MA Professional Practices and Design in Education envisions to support professionals in education and allied fields of learning to be:

  • 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

The program’s underpinning questions are:

  • How can a design disposition enable a creative inquiry into educational practices?
  • How do we go beyond personal and professional schisms, discourses of scale, efficiency and outcomes?
  • How do we reimagine and revitalise our own practice?

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, technology as a tool for thinking etc.  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.

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

The pathway in Design in Education course 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/Design Colleges: 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

Public Sector: Government and civil services officials, decision and policy makers

Modes of Learning offered by the pathway in Design in Education course

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 two modes of participation of onsite studios and tutorials with practice based research in the field.

Notes on options for Practice based modes of participation

M1: Two weeks per semester onsite 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 Manipal, Bangalore at the start of each semester. This period includes an overview to the course and its specific units of learning during the semester along with guidelines for practice based research and field based assignments. An introduction to second phase of each semester: guidelines for project based research and field based assignments that can be conducted on site or in field is also provided during this induction. One can expand on own competencies by signing in for workshop (electives) by staying on for two more weeks onsite (Srishti Manipal). The final semester is a capstone project requiring 2 weeks of onsite engagement to finalise project proposal followed by mentored field practice and research.

M2: Five weeks or seven weeks each academic year onsite followed by guided project based study

This mode is designed for practitioners for whom one longer intensive period of onsite study each academic year is preferable. Onsite participation will enable the completion of the first phase of the odd semester and obtain an introduction to project for the odd semester as well learning units for even semester learning along with guidelines for practice based research and field based assignments. Those who select the 7-week mode can also avail of two weeks of workshop at Srishti Manipal towards their course electives. The final semester is a capstone project requiring 2 weeks of onsite engagement to finalise project proposal followed by mentored field practice and research.

M3: 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. The final semester is a capstone project requiring 2 weeks of onsite engagement to finalise project proposal followed by mentored field practice and research.

Unfold inquiry and cultivate slow thought: Handmade Journal; Building a Manifesto for Practice as Mastery.

Course Structure

  • Disciplinary and Interdisciplinary studios
  • Workshops
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Lines of Inquiries (Field work, Case Studies, Investigations, individual or Group Projects, Transdisciplinary Research)
  • Theory and Understanding
  • Independent Study
  • Open Elective
  • Practicum
  • Master classes/webinars
  • Exhibitions
  • Culminating Performances of Understanding (Portfolio, transdisciplinary research, projects, colloquium, capstone/dissertation)
  • Knowledge Enhancement (ability or skills)

Learning Approaches

Learning at the postgraduate level is driven by published lines of inquiries that is enacted through studio-based learning, workshops, theoretical reflections and field work. This approach is grounded in setting and pursuing a personal vision towards practice as mastery.

Program learning approaches include:

  • Philosophical inquiries and theoretical reflections to build critique
  • Compassionate, Critical and Collaborative Learning Circles
  • Staying with the Problem: Reimagining & Redesigning
  • Convivial Research Practices
  • Making, Mindfulness and Reflective Practice
  • Practice as 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, portfolios, 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


Graduates of 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

Within the 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

Within the Public Sector

  • Policy and decision makers
  • Human resource developers
  • Public education government officials



Disciplinary Intersections

This pathway is informed by the following learning disciplines:

Research and Collaboration

The pathway in Design in Education course offers its students opportunities to connect with artists and designers from a range of research and practice labs and centres based at Srishti Manipal. These include:

Students will also have opportunities to intersect with partner organizations working in areas such as environmental conservation, tangible and intangible cultural heritage, stories and place as pedagogies, oral histories and more.



Design in education is concerned with how design thinking and design tools processes and tactics can be used to inform professional practices in education. This has implications on how we rethink the role of experiences, mind, materials, technology and methods in learning programs, enterprises, spaces, relationships and more.

The program in Design in Education is different to the traditional B.Ed. or M.Ed. program in its curriculum and approach to educational practices. This program is strongly anchored in ideas of design and draws upon learning frameworks such as construction, universal design for learning, critical making, story as pedagogy etc. 
The curriculum of this course will focus on:

  • Tools, strategies and methods for understanding learners, their needs, environment and learning experiences
  • cultivating professional inquiry as design disposition through reflection in action and creative explorations into curriculum design
  • The value and use of tools of thinking including technology and mindfulness practices that can unfold new meanings of thinking; visual ways of learning, representation of information
  • Designing learning experiences that draw upon the power and potential of: story and storytelling; art and science of making; ill-defined problems; real-world contexts; digital platforms, new media and technology.

This course primarily uses a studio-based approach where doing, thinking about, reflecting and critiquing what you do are important. It will include opportunities to learn via workshops, tutorials and seminars. There will be individualized learning opportunities and forums for peer learning. Developing transdisciplinary approach as well as practice-based research is critical in this program. Independent study sustains learning. Students will also develop a portfolio of their own learning over a two-year period.

This program will be relevant for anyone currently working in an area concerned with learning. All applicants must have an undergraduate degree/diploma from a recognized university. Please refer to eligibility criteria listed on the admissions page.

This course prioritizes practice-based learning. You should have at least some regular opportunities to connect and apply your learning and experiences from the course in an environment where you can engage with people who are learning or with developing processes or artifacts for learning.

You must have access to good broadband connectivity at frequent intervals (at least) in order to submit course assignments. While you may be able to download and complete some assignments, there will be those that require you to be online with others.

Students will receive feedback and be assessed on assignments they complete from time to time. Their portfolio of work, participation and contribution to seminars/webinars will also be assessed. At end of the program students will submit a dissertation based on practice, research and field work, pass a viva voce and participate in a graduate conference.

This course will provide you with an opportunity to enrich your own professional practice through the use of design research approaches and by becoming conversant with important pedagogical principles and practices.

You will find unique opportunities in all types of educational institutions, public institutions and outreach organizations, educational start-ups and enterprises, NGOs doing educational programming and more.

With growing value of design in the country, universities and design schools are seeking design educators with a masters or PhDs. This program provides the platform during the capstone to also develop a proposal towards doctoral research; this will enable build critiques and new knowledge that can inform design practices.