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Home » Staff Directory » Jim Dawkins

Jim Dawkins

Published August 25, 2014

Jim Dawkins poses in front of live oak trees on a sunny Florida day. He is wearing a grey suit jacket.

Chair and Associate Professor

Department of Interior Architecture and Design
Curriculum Vitae (CV)


Areas of Responsibility

Areas of responsibility include teaching select classes of upper level undergraduate and graduate students in interior architecture and interior design project solutions, graphic techniques for quick sketching, design ideation, project brainstorming and client work sessions. Dawkins chairs and is a member of MFA thesis committees.


Dawkins’ research and original creative work progress along two separate but frequently overlapping paths: 1) the analysis of and instruction in hand sketching skills through the cognitive framework of expertise theory relative to the idea of thinking through drawing, and 2) drawing as a means to access memory and confirm moment; the attempt to recover the ephemeral visual links of a past connected to the soul of a place once occupied. Research with colleagues involves design thinking based upon empathy in combination with emotional intelligence as a measuring device to determine stronger emotional investments in the act of drawing and the drawings (representing creative ideation) themselves. Previous research explored the perceptions, motivations, and expertise of why some architects choose to practice interior design. He is a registered architect in several states, having earned his BA in Design and Master of Architecture degrees from Clemson University prior to practicing for twenty years as an architect, designer and corporate officer with design firms in Atlanta, GA and Vail, CO.


Master of Architecture, Clemson University, 1988
Bachelor of Arts in Design, Clemson University, 1986

Teaching Areas

Graduate and undergraduate interior design studios, graphic techniques studios (hand sketching and hybrid hand/digital drawing), experimental graphics, and internships.

Research Areas

Dawkins’ primary research interest focuses on the notion of thinking through drawing – graphic facilitation, communication, and mediation of ideas through hand-drawing techniques and their realization in traditional hand and digital hybrid forms of computer aided design. Secondary research currently involves the analysis of and instruction in hand sketching skills through the cognitive framework of expertise theory.


Dawkins is a member of the university’s Undergraduate Policy Committee and the Academic Honors Policy Appeals Committee. He is also the co-sponsor of the Interior Design Student Organization.


Select Scholarly/Creative Works & Awards

  • Dawkins, J. D. (presented 2020, January). Narrative Drawing as an Agent of Memory Re-Collection and Retention. Presentation at Experiential Design – Rethinking relations between people, objects and environments, Architecture, Media, Politics, Society, Florida State University. (International) Retrieved from
  • Dawkins, J. D. (presented 2019, March). Agents of Retrieval, Re-Collection and Retention: Sketching and Its Role in Memory-Making. Presentation at 2020 Interior Design Educators Council Conference, Interior Design Educators Council, Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA. (National)
  • Dawkins, J., & Pable, J. (2018). Sketching Interiors at the Speed of Thought, Second Edition. New York, New York: Bloomsbury Publishing.
  • Dawkins, J. 2018 DCA Juried Design Communication Exhibition. Three drawings exhibited; 39% acceptance rate. Martha Van Rensselaer Gallery, Cornell University, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY: Design Communication Association.
  • Dawkins, J. (presented 2018, February). Is it Me (f)or a Moment? Reconciling Past and Present with Time Windows. Paper presented at Design Communication Association Conference 2018, Design Communication Association, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, USA. (International)
  • Dawkins, J. (2017, September–November). 27th Annual All Florida Juried Arts Show. Two drawings exhibited; 10% acceptance rate. Court House Cultural Center Gallery, Stuart, Florida: The Arts Council of Martin County.
  • Dawkins, J., & Webber, S. (presented 2016, September). Emotional Intelligence in Sketching: Framing the Process with Expertise Theory and Emotional Intelligence. Paper presented at 2016 Design Communication Association Biannual Conference, Design Communication Association, Montana State University, Bozeman, Montana, USA. (International)
  • Dawkins, J. (presented 2014, October). Student Sketching Viewed Through the Framework of Expertise Theory: The Advanced Beginner. Paper presented at 2014 Design Communication Association Biannual Conference, Design Communication Association, Southern Polytechnic State University, Atlanta, GA. (International)
  • McLane, Y., & Dawkins, J. (2014). Building of Requirement: Liberating Academic Interior Architecture. Journal of Learning Spaces, 3(1), 9 pages total. Retrieved from
  • Dawkins, J., & Pable, J. (presented 2013, October). Sketching at the Speed of Thought: Weaving Expertise Theory with Drawing Automaticity. Paper presented at Interweavings: The 3rd International Conference on Drawing, Cognition and Education, Thinking through Drawing and the Drawing Research Network, Teacher’s College at Columbia University, New York, NY. (International) Retrieved from