Jen Irish

Julie Irish

  • Assistant Professor
  • Interior Design
ArtID 569E


Contact Info

578 Design
715 Bissell Rd.


ArtID 569E: Inclusive Environments 


Case Study

As a practicing interior designer for many years, I specialized in creating inclusive environments, interior spaces that were accessible to a wide range of people. This focused on design for people with disabilities, but people can be excluded for many reasons, including gender, race, and poverty. This work has carried over into my research, where I am particularly interested in the design of the environment to support people with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

The new course I created aims for students to explore these issues and think about their role as inclusive designers in the future. I like to teach using a variety of methods, such as lectures with an active learning component that students can do some hands-on work. I found that using a variety of OER reading material provided students with different perspectives to promote discussion. Since the course is about inclusivity, I am also aware that many students are on a budget and believe it is important to offer them the affordability of OER materials for their schoolwork. I do not want a student to be put off taking my course because they could not afford the expensive textbook!