Robin Vande Zande is an Associate Professor in Art and Design Education at Kent State University. Earlier in her career, she taught art and design as an elementary, middle and high school teacher. The enthusiasm shown by her young students to the design lessons led to her dissertation study on the history of design education in K-12 schools in the United States from 1870-2000. Since that time she has researched and published many articles on design education.
Her upcoming book, Design Education: Creating Thinkers to Improve the World, will be co-published by the National Art Education Association and Rowman & Littlefield in 2016. Robin has served as Chair of the Design Issues Group (DIG) of the National Art Education Association, as an education committee member on the National Building Museum, Washington DC, and the Fallingwater Museum, Pennsylvania.
During 2013-2014, she oversaw a writing team of 30 educators in design-related areas from around the United States. The team was organized during the June 2013 DESIGN-ED conference held at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. The writing team report later became the basis for a study funded through a National Art Education Foundation grant conducted with Doris Wells-Papanek. The result of that study is the Framework for Design Education Principles, Practices, and Strategies.
Dr. Vande Zande was the recipient of the 2014 National Design Educator of the Year, presented by DIG, and a finalist for the Distinguished Teaching Award at Kent State University. She chaired the 3rd International Design Research and Education Conference, 2015, hosted by the School of the Art Institute in Chicago, co-sponsored by DESIGN-ED, DRS, and CUMULUS.