Assist. Profs. Christensen and Sosa-Tzec to introduce a design communication rubric at Surface, the 2022 AIGA Design Educators Community Conference

Ellen Christensen and Omar Sosa-Tzec, Assistant Professors of Visual Communication Design, have developed a rubric to evaluate the presentation and communication of design projects by undergraduate design students. The two professors will present this rubric at the Surface, the 2022 AIGA Design Educators Community Mini-Conference, which takes place as one of the events within the National AIGA Design Conference of this year.

Christensen and Sosa-Tzec developed this rubric by assessing work from students of the School of Design and using experiential knowledge, design pedagogy scholarship, and the communication rubric elaborated by the American Association of Colleges and Universities. They engaged in this project as part of the Core Competency and GE Assessment Program of the SFSU Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning division, intending to help students become more articulate in their project presentations and strategic regarding the use of writing, imagery, and even non-verbal communication or any possible mode of communication to stand out and be persuasive.

  • Christensen and Sosa-Tzec invite everyone in the School of Design to utilize this rubric.
Rubric to evaluate design communication in the classroom by Ellen Christensen and Omar Sosa-Tzec

    This rubric comprises six communication design dimensions

    • Design Situation - the student's ability to describe the problem to address through design
    • Design Process - the student's ability to describe the different phases and iterations that led to the design solution
    • Design Rationale - the student's ability to describe the effectiveness of the design outcome
    • Design Language and Vocabulary - the student's ability to describe discipline-specific concepts that informed the design process
    • Design Evidence - the student's ability to provide significant visual or multimodal content that shows design work and process
    • Design Writing - the student's ability to provide written content that explains design work and process
    • Design Competency and Knowledge - the student's ability to describe the learning and takeaways from carrying out the design process

    Each dimension is scored as follows:

    • Beginning - 1 point
    • Developing - 2 points
    • Competent - 3 points
    • Accomplished - 4 points
    Ellen Christensen and Omar Sosa-Tzec

    Assist. Prof. Sosa-Tzec member of the AIGA DEC Design + Writing Fellowship 2022

    The AIGA Design Educators Community (DEC) introduced a new design and writing fellowship for 2022. Assistant Professor Omar Sosa-Tzec was selected along with another 15 design faculty across the United States to form this fellowship's first cohort. From January to June, these design faculty worked individually and collaboratively to discuss and investigate the visual essay. Dr. Sosa-Tzec utilized sketchnoting to reflect on the nature of visual essays and explore theoretical approaches that could facilitate their production and peer-review––namely, poetics, semiotics, rhetoric, and aesthetics. 

    Posters showcasing the fellows' projects will be exhibited at Surface––the AIGA DEC Mini-Conference––which takes place during the events of the 2022 AIGA Design Conference. Below is Prof. Sosa-Tzec's poster.


    Poster by Omar Sosa-Tzec to be presented in the AIGA DEC Conference