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Teachers in Residence at ELSE

Davina Yalley a teacher from St Clement Danes in Hertfordshire took part in a Teachers in Residence placement at Else, a design consultancy in London. This case study delves into the insights that she gained, and her reflections on the programme.

Initial Impressions  

Davina’s initial encounter with Else included a warm welcome and introduction to the team by Greig who is Head of Delivery & Operations at Else. She found the setting of the London-based design studio to be chic yet quirky with a friendly atmosphere.

Tasks and Activities

During her placement, Davina was immersed in Else’s design processes and methodologies. The team provided insights into various roles within the consultancy, emphasising collaboration and user-centred design. She found the focus on digital design and applications particularly intriguing and was able to see potential in applying their design methodology in a classroom setting.

Learning and Skill Development

Through interactions with the team and exposure to new software like Figma, Davina’s knowledge of the design sector and understanding of current industry practices was expanded during the placement. She identified opportunities to integrate her learning into her teaching, especially in teaching students about collaboration and the diverse roles within design teams.


Reflecting on her experience, Davina appreciated the structure and duration of the programme. She acknowledged the need for a balance between immersion in industry practices and the demands of teaching. She found the three-day placement was the perfect amount of time to gain a good introduction to the studio.

Future Collaboration

Davina expressed interest in future collaborations with Else, particularly in facilitating workshops or guest lectures for her students. She recognises the value of bridging the gap between industry and education.

Davina’s Teachers in Residence placement at Else provided her with insights into the world of design consultancy. From enhancing her understanding of industry practices to identifying opportunities for student engagement, the experience enriched her teaching approach. As she returns to her classroom, Davina remains eager to integrate her learnings among her students.

Being able to offer Teachers in Residence with the D&TA is hugely important to us in order to transfer over methods and skills from the design industry back into classroom teaching. The enthusiasm shown by the teachers is always encouraging and makes for a really inspiring and rewarding few days for everyone.

Dave Dunlop

Chief Design Officer & Partner, Else