In response to requirements for program flexibility and timetable changes within the university, the ANU School of Art & Design (SOAD) has opened many of its courses to students from other disciplines and faculties. This has given rise to larger class sizes and mixed ability groups, and has presented a number of challenges for traditional studio-based teaching practices. A notable change is the need for lecturers to devote a greater proportion of time to developing competencies in lower order cognitive and psycho-motor domains – for example finding the need to conduct repeat technical demonstrations – at the expense of higher order activities such as self-evaluation and critique of artworks, and, ultimately, the production of new or original works.
To address these challenges and ensure teaching can move beyond lower level learnings to address higher order understandings and abilities we are currently developing a set of teaching resources that provide for a broad range of practical experience within the student cohort. This development and testing has been supported by an ANU Vice Chancellor’s Teaching Enhancement Grant. Taking as a starting point the hierarchy of educational objectives presented in Krathwohl’s (2010) revision of Bloom’s taxonomy of learning, this paper discusses a case study set in a textiles printing class. This course is part of the Bachelor of Visual Arts Textiles first year course menu, but is also open to students from across the university as an elective without any prerequisite level of skill, knowledge or study. It is a popular course and always fills to capacity.