I own "The Education of a Graphic Designer" by Steven Heller. It's a great collection of essays to help teachers reflect about graphic design education. I've yet to find other similar works however.

Are there other works exploring the philosophy of graphic design teaching? I'm not looking for books that teach graphic design, but books that strive to deepen a graphic design teachers' reflection or position about their teaching.

  • 1
    I'm not sure if this would be of interest, but I've always enjoyed "How to be a graphic designer without losing your soul". It may be more for designers vs. teachers however...
    – Benneb10
    Jul 25, 2017 at 14:29
  • Look at the creative aspects as this is key beyond the skills (composition, typography, colour etc) My art teacher's advice: "pick up a pencil and do it' - whilst simplistic, there is truth here. It's a personal exploration that gets better with use / experience like playing a musical instrument. Encourage passion, drive and commitment in students. Check out The Graphic Language of Neville Brody and The End Of Print - Works of David Carson. Carson was largely self taught, re-invented the work of Jamie Reid ((Sex Pistols) for a 90's audience. Dada, collage, found objects, image and text as one Jul 31, 2017 at 15:49

3 Answers 3


I know is not a book that explains how to teach or related, but as a student bought "how to be an illustrator" by Darrel Rees, was the best book I read, I'm still reading it every year, it's lessons helped me not only on illustration, but graphic design, business administration and my personal life. Worth the read, you might get some inspiration.


Design is a Job by Mike Monteiro

Don't Make me Think by Steven Krug

And the Pricing & Ethical Guidelines

Beyond this articles in How magazine

.. All things which speak to cursory or tangent concepts -- how design is seen, how design is interacted with, how design can support you or cause your failure, how to deal with clients, how to price, business ethics, etc... nothing really about "this is how to design". (Except maybe the Krug book to a degree.)


It just so happens that a few days before I posted my question, a really relevant book was published "Teaching Design" by Meredith Davis. I got my hands on it last week and it's quite in-depth and intended for educators. I think it can definitely help bridge a bit of a gap considering a lot of college/university educators are not necessarily trained in teaching, especially with regards to assessment. We've also been undergoing curriculum assessement where I teach and she pinpoints multiple issues that we've been facing, such as choosing whether to hire generalists or experts.

Davis goes through:

  • The history of design education and how this has affected the current system
  • How to design effective curricula
  • The types of pedagogy used in design education and how they relate to various projects

  • Interdisciplinarity and teaching

  • Assessing student performance and the curriculum overall
  • How design itself can contribute to teaching

  • Strategies for teaching through design

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