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In light of this week’s British Council Design in Education Week, what one thing could the education system do to better prepare design graduates for the workplace?

‘Encourage the teaching of design skills as transferable skills, so future graduates have more chances to succeed in fields other than ‘design’ in its purest sense. Graduates should be encouraged to look for those different opportunities and promote their problem-solving, creative and communication skills, not just their ‘design’ skills.’

Andrew Summers, Chief Executive, the Design Council

‘On our lecture tours we always find that universities are crying out for industry knowledge and live briefs. Wouldn’t it be great if a designer from every company in the Design Week Top 100 survey spent one day a year working with design and design management courses? In my opinion, it would be a learning curve for both.’

Paula Carrahar, Director, Major Players

‘Collaboration, in its broadest sense, is key. It is essential that students work with other design disciplines and outside bodies in industry as much as possible to benefit from different perspectives. Young designers must be taught that, once they leave, they will not be designing in their own private ‘bubble’, but will be working closely with a wide range of different people.’

Simon Bolton, Product Design Course Director, Central St Martin’s College of Art and Design

‘Accustom them to justifying their work to a sceptical and potentially violent crowd (not their mates). Ten per cent of their working life will be spent doing; 90 per cent explaining why.’

Brian Eeley, Creative Director, Lambie-Nairn

‘I think that it should be mandatory for students to spend three months doing their thing in the industry. Failing that, how about www.youwannagetoutmoremate.com – a 24-hour Web cam in every design business – then students would get the real picture.’

Matt Frost, Design Partner, The Team

‘I think that students should be allowed the space to be truly creative, and not just encouraged to simply copy their design heroes in the hope of getting a job.’

Michael Johnson, Creative Director, Johnson Banks

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