SCOOL OF SCIENCES AND TECHNOLOGIES OF DESIGN
The studies at the University of Sciences and Technologies of Design last five years after the baccalaureate of the secondary education. This educational system has started since the university year 2000_2001( year of school creation).
These studies are into two academic cycles. Meanwhile, a short section of three years of studies, specialized in furniture design, has been equally set up since the university year 2001_2002.
The first cycle of five year system includes theoretic and practical courses divided into two other levels. The first year of the general common-core syllabus is mainly a year of initiation and exercise to the fundamental modes of specific expression. During this year, students should acquire how to deal with proportions, in short it is a stage of familiarization with essential tool of design. The second year of the specific common-core syllabus is meant to deepen the knowledge already received during the first year and that’s by making the study approach much more functional.
In fact, through the initiation workshops dealing with the different skills of design: picture, space and product design, we have put into practice exercises and programs so as to attribute a functional and useful character to our studies.
Moreover, this second year is a very important step since it represents a year of orientation. At the end of this year students are oriented according to their competences and skills to the different specialties of our school.
The second academic cycle includes theoretic and practical courses divided into three levels: the 3rd year is based on putting into practice the conceived ideas, as for the 4th year it is rather the step of a complete execution of what our students have learnt so far.
The 5th year of studies includes two semesters, the first one is kept for the end of studies project and research paper which reveal the profile and the competence of the future designer, as for the second it is devoted to a 3-month professional training.
Indeed, professional training is considered as one of our priorities once the students are graduated and that’s because it in not only complementary to our studies but it also enhances a strategy of professional partnership, and then increases the opportunities of immediate integration of our students in the professional life.
Our school of sciences and technologies of design was founded in 2000, and it counted at that time 220students and 18 teachers. During the university year 2007_2008 the students number reached 2400 and our teachers number increased to become 130.
We are proud to mention that we are at the forth generation of graduates with a remarkable employment rate relatively equal for all our specialties.
Far from being a profile linked to factory work, this formation seeks out the qualification of a profile characterised by the necessary skills for the mastery. This mastery is linked to different constructive phases of the production chain starting from the projection until it reaches the production, going through the fragmentation, the fabrication, the assembly, the finish etc…(a formation for functional studies, methods and fabrication)
The first year of this formation is a year of introducing students to the speciality basing on the general knowledge of technical and methodological order. As for the second and the third year , the students are offered a highly specialised technical formation that allow them to acquire an easy professional integration and to be highly linked to the market. This formation is crowned with a project of studies end and a professional training strictly adopted organism either in Tunisia or abroad.
Apart from the programs perfectly adopted for the actual needs of the market and the need for the elaboration of highly skilful university profiles, the success of such formation that is applied to different skills of design, cannot exist without the presence of a true strategy of partnership generating a professional insertion in addition to the foundation of doctoral academic studies which in turn leads to the improvement of university teacher’s level.
By the academic year 2008-2009, the LMD system was introduced with three main specialities in Image Design, Space Design and Product design. The value of 2/3, 1/3 was widely respected among applied licences (in audio-visual publicity, graphic publicity, interior architecture, scenography, industrial creation, artisanal creation, packaging and furniture) which cover 75℅ and the fundamental licences (in Image Design, Space Design and Product Design) covering 25℅.
The first semesters of studies are common initiation into the specialities and the concerned domain. Then, starting from the second semester and putting into consideration the national criteria for the validity of this process, the student is oriented towards his speciality. The applied licences in design aim either at an academic and professional formation for an immediate insertion into the market or at the extension of studies in professional mastery. The research mastery will expect a rate of 10℅.
The fundamental licences allow the student to be inserted into the market and to acquire a formation that is essentially analytic and reflexive. Thus the student will eventually be permitted to continue his studies either in research mastery and doctorate or to be among the 10℅ of professional mastery students.
Partnership strategy and professional insertion
Right at the beginning of the second cycle, in other words, since the first year of specialisation, all the projects of application that are related to speciality workshops, should directly contact real public or private institutions (professional organisms) under the medium of partnership.
Such strategy not only allows the student to be more motivated by confronting them with real problems of amelioration, innovation but it prepares him for the future professional life. Such direct confrontation, stimulates the very particular interests for projects development, hence the progress of different profiles that are formed at school. One should note that this fact will facilitate the professional insertion of the students and provide them with a clear idea about the real situation of the market which is witnessing a perpetual mobility.
In the public field, we have adopted a series of conventions and partnerships with public institutions and state organisms. This enterprise has favoured the genesis of a complete acknowledgment envisaged by the designers in the economic as well as the social and cultural level. Besides, it has reached national as well as regional and local dimensions.
The influence of this acknowledgement lies also in the number of partnership projects which rose clearly from 20 projects in 2003 to 692 projects in 2007-2008.
In fact, this rapid growth has generated a high employment rate for the students that are graduated from this school. Actually, we are optimist thanks to this professional insertion guarantee which is in deed, important not only for the students themselves but for the interest of national community.
The founding of doctoral studies
The High School of the Sciences and Technologies of design, which was created in the year 2000, should respond to the new needs of the students, that are expressed by the new disciplines of higher formation in design. These disciplines, that should ensure a good quality of teaching, require an important number of university teachers. Since we are really aware of the mission that was put on our shoulders, we will do our best to:
-Ensure a good quality of formation in the best conditions.
-Favour the opening of the school onto the Tunisian socio-economical, industrial and cultural environment.
- Answer to the requirements the country development by providing an atmosphere where competencies in design domains, arts and craftsmanship are developed.
-Encourage the Maghrebian and the Arab cooperation either in the formation level or the supervision of studies and researches.
-Stimulate the scientific and the international and technological cooperation by focusing on partnership arrangements.
In fact this system has been taking place since the university re-opening of 2001-2002.It’s a kind of a specific doctoral formation of skills and technologies of design. This formation includes currently mastery in sciences and technologies of design and a preparation for the doctorate thesis in different disciplines, mainly, Image Design, Space Design and Product Design.
The objective of this doctoral formation is the apprenticeship of researches in different domains of design. These domains of specialisation were selected among other different disciplines representing design mostly. For that reason, a real attraction and a great demand have existed in diverse sectors in the economic activity. The opening of such formation, either in the research or in the industry, was in deed numerous and diverse.
The studies for obtaining the mastery during three successive semesters are scheduled as follows:
-One semester is devoted for technical teaching and management.
-Two semesters are devoted for the preparation of thesis and pedagogical apprenticeship.
Thus, the student preparing the mastery in sciences and technologies of design in one of the three suggested disciplines of the ESSTED, practice researches including practical and artistic experimentation which are related to research teams, both at school and in the associated laboratories(Tunisian as well as foreign) and tackling adopted reflexive approaches.
The studies of the first semester of mastery include a teaching of twelve hours a week, distributed into four modules. The first was entitled “Design and Technology” (three hours a week). It is devoted to profound knowledge in both applied art and in developing the critical spirit of researches. While the second module is reserved for applied arts history (two weekly hours) aiming at widening the knowledge about the subject and orienting the research towards contemporary arts. As for the third one which is related to research methodology ( 3 weekly hours), it aims at familiarizing the student with the main concepts and notions of research.
As for the third (module) focusing on the methodology of research (3 hours weekly), it tends to familiarize the student with the main concepts and notions of research. It also aims at leading this student to found his choices and define the presupposed theories of his research without forgetting to initiate him to the objectivity in his studies and if necessary to the formation of a judgement.
The last module is interested in the methodology applied on the projects about one of the three field proposed for the mastery. It is ought four hours a week, so it aims at initiating the student to the approaches and methods of fundamental projects applied to design.
In this frame, the question of teachers for the doctoral formation was necessary. The staff charged with the studies of the doctoral formation is mixed; they are teachers from Tunisia and from abroad. The Tunisian ones are permanent at school.
As for the foreign teachers, the doctoral formation necessitated the invitation of foreign teachers to insure the course or part of it.
On the other hand and in the framework of “mastery”, school has called contractual Tunisian have always been part of the Arab and Tunisian skills at sabbatical holidays.
Till now, the “mastery” has brought about a great number of teachers (assistants) newly-recruited by different national commissions of recruited as an “assistant”. These “assistants” are employed either at school or in other similar institutions in Tunisia. They are equally inscribed in doctoral thesis in sciences and Technologies of design (the first doctors were 2 in 2007 – 2008 and the second ones were 5 in 2008-2009)