Numerous attempts have been made to develop formal design methods with -the purpose of increasing the predictability, consistency and dissemination of the design process and improving the quality of the objects produced. The ill- structured nature of design, and the perception of design activities as intuitive and experience dependent have frustrated many of the efforts to structure these process. The growing complexity of the built environment and advances in technology have led to a more rigorous effort to understand and externalize creative activities. Computer aided design tools have recently been playing an important role in the evolution of the design process as a rationally defined activity. The use of- computers for drafting, analysis, and 2 or 3 dimensional modelling is  rapidly becoming an accepted method in many design schools and practitioners. A next logical step in the externalization of the design process is to endow the computer with the ability to manipulate and critique parts of the design. Under this scenario, the “terminal crit” is redefined to mean critiques that are carried out by both the designer and the computer. The paper presents the rationalization of the design process as a continuum into which CAD has been introduced. The effects of computers on the design process are studied through a specific incorporation of CAD tools into a conventional design studio, and a research project intended to advance the role of CAD in design.