Date of Completion


Document Type

Open Access Capstone

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

First Advisor

Peter Taylor


The subject matter explored was a result of my curiosity as to why clients have a tendency to fixate over specific details once a design solution is proposed. Through the enlightenment of a personal experience of implementing an “educational session” for a client as part of the design process, this synthesis addresses the benefits of and ways to further develop better communication through improving relationships. Specifically the themes of engagement, dialogue, language and value are examined. These themes are essential contributions to encouraging communication and understanding between a designer and their client. Design firms effectively using these concepts will be highlighted as examples. In order to further understand how society views the design profession, why misconceptions exist and how these misconceptions interfere with current client/designer relationships will also be discussed. Future developments of this subject matter, place the initiative on the design profession and educators. Approaches to use in the classroom as well as in the boardroom to implement the themes of engagement, dialogue, language and value will be introduced. Design professionals need to take the initiative to develop the relationships needed to place design as a strategic entity in the minds of business.


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