Photo of Kevin Woolley

Kevin Woolley

Assistant Professor
Patti and Rusty Rueff School of Visual and Performing Arts/PAO
kwoolley@purdue.edu 

Dr. Kevin H. Woolley is a professional designer, professor, and interdisciplinary scholar coming to Purdue after working for 10 ½ years internationally at Virginia Commonwealth University's overseas campus in Doha, Qatar. Kevin's role as Assistant Professor of Interior Design has provided a wealth of teaching and administrative experience. Kevin received his PhD in curriculum and instruction from New Mexico State University, MS in instructional technology from Utah State University, and BFA from Brigham Young University. Kevin’s research area focuses on the intersections of knowledge, social responsibility, and design. His current research interests center on harnessing creative intelligence for holistic learning and integrative development across the design disciplines.

How would you describe your research agenda?

Truly eclectic. That's my nature. My dissertation in 2013 was about a constructivist application of the heuristic design process. More recently, I am intrigued by how humans process what they know into viable solutions to “wicked” design problems, ergo the interest in creative intelligence, synthetic thinking, and cognitive tools (Mindtools). These are all mechanisms for describing what we know and how we apply this knowledge to design problems/opportunities.

How did you decide to research that area?

I began by observing that after 16 years of practice, design education had not really changed a whole lot. Seriously, over the past 5-6 years, my research has coalesced around the general topics of design cognition, critical pedagogies, and professional proficiencies. Everything I bring to the classroom must have relevance to what is going on globally. This includes a keen interest in bridging the gaps between understanding the “what?” of design into a holistically sustainable system that will benefit student’s short term - and more importantly - long term contributions to the field of design.

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