New Uses of Instagram in Design History Education


Social media, alassroom archive, industrial design history, Instagram student presentations, Instagram search


Last year we initiated the use of Instagram into our design history course at an introductory level. This year we explored further integration of Instagram as an academic tool. This study included twenty-two undergraduate participants who prototyped five new classroom uses of Instagram: posting full student presentations, utilising Instagram desktop view as the primary in-class presentation tool, employing templates enabling a cohesive visual identity and a simple search process, and methods to enhance student comments. We surveyed course participants mid-semester asking students about their personal Instagram use, the value and purpose they felt Instagram had in the course, and on the usefulness of the presentation templates. We learned that while the majority of students use Instagram in their daily life, few of them make comments on personal or course posts and will only do so for credit. We also learned that while students might not enjoy using Instagram in the course, they find it of value and highly meaningful. Finally, the students prefer using formatted templates over an open style like PowerPoint to build their presentations in. These templates enabled the students to post their full presentations and created a visual cohesiveness for the account while providing a rudimentary search process for individual posts. We will continue using Instagram in future courses with the exception of requiring comments. We believe that students will reference their class posts in years to come, and as they do, it will re-enforce their design knowledge and provide evidence of their personal growth.

Original Publication Citation

Howell, B., Siebert, J., & Hill, M. (2019). New Uses of Instagram In Design History Education. Conference proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Engineering and Product Design Education; Towards a New Innovation Landscape, (E&PDE19), Glasgow, UK, September 11-13.

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Peer-Reviewed Article

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Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology



University Standing at Time of Publication

Associate Professor