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Department of

Interior Design

Professor Emerita

Dorothy Fowles

Professor Emerita, Interior Design

Mailing Address

Interior Design Department
158 College of Design
Ames, IA, 50011

Contact Information

Dorothy Fowles joined the faculty in 1980. She previously taught at the University of Iowa and Oklahoma University. She normally teaches architectural lighting design, and contract design studios focusing on retail and hospitality design and research methodology. Service projects are regularly integrated into her studios. Her courses emphasize creative problem solving that addresses functional needs, user concerns including universal design and sustainable design in the context of dynamic visual responses. Dorothy, as a 2005 recipient of the edison Price Lighting Fellowship, is focusing research on the practice and perception of lighting design. Her professional residential and hospitality design projects have received numerous design awards. She has been internationally recognized for her service contributions to both the interior design profession and interior design education. These contributions have included the editor of JIDER,  president/chair of IDEC; advisor/mentor for universal design education project; founder of Interior Design Continuing Education Council, FIDER accreditation site visit chair; ASID STEP workshop leader. Her publications include seminal work on design education.


BA, Northwestern University, 1961
MA, Cornell University, 1964
PhD, University of Missouri, 1979

Research Interests

Lighting design; institutional design; behavioral-based design; user attitudes, preferences, tradeoffs in physical aspects of dwelling and work environments with an emphasis on lighting and cultural differences; development of the interior design profession and education

Current Projects

Restoration of 100 years old barn in as a museum and loft residence.