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Community of Practice: Interdisciplinary Co-design and Teaching for an Ageing Society

A dynamic interplay between interdisciplinary co-design and teaching to craft effective ageing solutions was brought to life when 35 individuals from diverse backgrounds came together to delve into co-design principles, share their expertise and engage in hands-on activities at the Taiwan Multidisciplinary Innovation Alliance Of Pioneer University (MIAOPU) Interdisciplinary Co-design and Teaching for an Ageing Society workshop! Supported by The Ngee Ann Kongsi, the event ignited much palpable energy and creativity to the delight of all participants, under expert facilitation by coaches from the universities in Taiwan.

Associate Professor Carol Ma
A warm welcome to participants to kick off the workshop.

Professor Hsieh, Shang-Hsien

Professor Hsieh Shang-Hsien, Computer-Aided Engineering Division of the Department of Civil Engineering at National Taiwan University (NTU), Taipei, Taiwan. expressing his gratitude for the opportunity to co-organise the workshop in Singapore.

Group photo of the MIAOPU coach team

The MIAOPU coach team reflecting on the success of the workshop.

Empathy icebreakers spark collaboration in Design Thinking 1

'Empathy' ice-breakers spark collaboration in design thinking.

To kick off the session, ice-breakers and group activities were introduced to create a friendly atmosphere. Participants were then paired together to share crazy stories, allowing them to get to know their partners better and enhance their course interaction and collaboration. 

Empathy icebreakers spark collaboration in Design Thinking.
‘Empathy’ activities spark collaboration in design thinking.

Participants continued with a classic design challenge rooted in design thinking, setting the stage for a hands-on, iterative learning journey. The first highlight was a wallet-designing activity, emphasising the importance of empathy within a human-centric approach. Following this, coaches from Taiwan demonstrated innovative applications of design thinking in the fields of medicine, finance and history. The segment ended with a case study on the muscle-care toolkit, designed to address sarcopenia in the elderly. 

Design Thinking 4D concepts 
Applying the design thinking of 4D concepts to cross-disciplinary course design

Taiwan MIAOPU coaches showcase dual-teacher feature
Showcasing the dual-teacher feature of the Taiwan MIAOPU coaches.

The highly-anticipated afternoon session soon continued with a unique dual-teacher feature, a hallmark of the Taiwan MIAOPU team's starter workshop, which enabled participants from diverse backgrounds to swiftly identify exciting curriculum topics for joint exploration. Through three cross-disciplinary curriculum posters that the coaches have been working on for the past ten years, this hands-on experience enabled individuals to leverage one another's strengths and design perspectives, fostering collaborative curriculum creation.

Shanice Loke, student of SUSS
Our participants working together to brainstorm and ideate.

Participant 1
Participants unveiling the custom-designed posters for the two-day course, highlighting their unique strengths and specialties alongside their newfound partnerships.

Participant 2
A participant sharing enthusiastically about the Taiwan MIAOPU team's approach and content as his absolute favourite. 

Group photo of the participants with SUSS organising team and MIAOPU coaches

SUSS organising team and MIAOPU beaming with joy as they wrap up the enriching workshop.

Reflecting on this workshop, Thomas Kuan, Founder of U 3rd Age, remarked, “Design  learning is useful for the development of memories or reminder tips for seniors.”

Shanice Loke, SUSS Master of Gerontology student also praised and expressed her appreciation for this workshop. “A good introduction to design thinking and how to apply the process practically. Thanks for organising!”

 Visit here to learn about our Gerontology programmes!

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