In order to improve pedagogical effectiveness, this study aims at gaining an insight on architectural studentsi problem framing activities using digital versus paper media. The role of problem framing in design process and its contribution to design learning has been variously studied. Laboratory experiments were conducted to investigate the role of problem framing under three settings namely online co-located, online remote and paper-based co-located. Students were asked to spend 40 minutes in solving a wicked design problem collaboratively. The results show that in the online remote setting the activities of problem framing are significantly different compared to those in the other two co-located settings. We find more density of framing activities happened in the online remote setting than in the other two settings. We also find there is no significant difference of problem framing between online co-located and paper-based colocated settings. Through this study we suggest that multiple design tools need to be considered to support design learning and teaching.