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The Practice of Designing Architecture

  • Module code: AR6002
  • Year: 2018/9
  • Level: 6
  • Credits: 30
  • Pre-requisites: None
  • Co-requisites: AR6001, AR6003, AR6004

Summary

An architect synthesises a complex range of issues, design aspirations and inspirations within the design of a project. The successful integration of ethical, social, regulatory, contractual and procedural issues within a developing design process, alongside an awareness of building economy, is fundamental to making a successful work of architecture. This process of synthesis requires discipline, critical self-reflection, iteration and team work.

This module integrates such professional issues within a final thesis design project, a capstone project, and prepares students for their initial period of professional practice.

A thesis design project is a design portfolio with a theoretical foundation that demonstrates a critical and individual line on inquiry that results in a unique architectural proposition. This capstone project is the culmination of learning throughout the course.

Aims

  • To develop and apply knowledge, techniques and skills which will enable students to work within the professional, regulatory and procedural context within which architecture is created;
  • To enable the development of a final thesis project with a level of complexity, which is rigorously tested and refined through multiple iterations in response to critical appraisal;
  • To enable students to understand how professional requirements are fundamental and potentially creative factors within the development and resolution of propositional work.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:

  1. Articulate the professional, social and ethical responsibilities which inform the practice of architecture, including relationships with other members of the design team;
  2. Apply an understanding of the regulations, procedures and the professional and practical stages of a process of procurement, in relation to a design project;
  3. Demonstrate an ability to critically appraise and reflect upon their own working practices and those of others, whilst working individually or as part of a team;
  4. Analyse and critically appraise a brief for a design proposal, establishing programmatic and end user requirements in relation to a given site and context
  5. Critique propositional work through a number of iterative cycles, representing and evaluating these and reflecting upon the reasons for change;
  6. Respond to the professional, regulatory, social, environmental and ethical issues within the context of a design project.

Curriculum content

  • The profession of architecture and of other construction professionals;
  • The legal system as it relates to architecture and other construction professionals, including contractual relationships;
  • The procurement of construction projects;
  • Regulations, procedures and work stages of construction projects;
  • Effective self-management and reflective learning skills;
  • Peer assessment and review skills;
  • Analysis of the requirements of the inhabitants and community of a design project;
  • Critical analysis skills to appraise and develop a design brief on a specific site;
  • Iteratively testing and refining a project in response to feedback and self reflection;
  • Recording the development of the design process;
  • Responding to the professional, regulatory, social, environmental and ethical issues within a design;
  • Oral communication and presentation skills.

Teaching and learning strategy

The module has two supportive/contextual based elements (Coursework) and one design based element (Design Portfolio). The Coursework and the Design Portfolio parts of the course are taught in relation to each other through a combination of studio based projects, lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops and study visits.

The School employs various learning technologies to support the teaching and learning strategies. Canvas is used to support teaching and learning in all modules, and other aspects of the courses and School as a whole. It is used at a modular level as a repository for all module documentation, such as the module guide, briefs, lecture handouts, support material, and links to web-resources. It is also used for tutorial and workshop sign-up lists and discussion forums where appropriate.  Students should check this site on a daily basis.

All courses based in the Kingston School of Art offer students free access to the online video tutorial platform Lynda.com. This provides a wide range of subjects to choose from, many with downloadable exercise files, including software tutorials covering photography, graphics, web design, audio and music, CAD and Microsoft Office software, as well as courses on Business and Management skills. Some of these are embedded in the curriculum and offer additional self-paced learning, others may be taken at will by students wishing to broaden their employability skills in other areas.

Breakdown of Teaching and Learning Hours

Definitive UNISTATS Category Indicative Description Hours
Scheduled learning and teaching Studio-based projects, lectures, workshops, study visits, tutorials, seminars. 75
Guided independent study 225
Total (number of credits x 10) 300

Assessment strategy

Assessment for this module has three elements of assessment. The Coursework consists of two assessed elements and these are 'Coursework Assessment 1' and 'Coursework Assessment 2'. The 'Design Portfolio' is a separate element and is synoptically assessed across all 4 modules.

Within the Coursework elements, feedback/feed forward is given in different forms depending on the nature of the work. However all will offer the opportunity for at least one group or individual tutorial and formal written feedback following submission, within the prescribed timescale.

Within the Design Portfolio element ie. in Studio the following strategies for feedback/feed forward apply:

  • Weekly tutorials, either group or individual as appropriate to the project stage
  • At least one formal presentation and review, with written feedback, within each teaching block
  • Formative feedback on a submitted portfolio at end of teaching block 1
  • Formal written feedback on a submitted portfolio at end of teaching block 2

Coursework Assessments (30% in total):

The Coursework consists of two elements and these are 'Coursework Assessment 1' and 'Coursework Assessment 2' which are reflected in Learning Outcomes

1-3. The 'Coursework Assessment 1' element on this module is a group project which consists of a Planning and Regulatory Context study, which includes a 12-minute presentation and a 1.5 minute lumière film (15%).  This assignment is carried out and is assessed as a group.  The 'Coursework Assessment 2' element on this module is a Value and Management Report (15%). This assignment is carried out and is assessed individually.

Design Portfolio (70%):

The assessment for the Design Portfolio element of this module is a Workbook which relates to the iterative development of the Thesis Design Project and its integration into wider professional and regulatory issues. This illustrated and graphically presented submission relates to aspects of professional architecture practice. This is reflected in Learning Outcomes 1-6.

Mapping of Learning Outcomes to Assessment Strategy (Indicative)

Learning Outcome Assessment Strategy
1) Articulate the professional, social and ethical responsibilities which inform the practice of architecture , including relationships with other members of the design team; Coursework Assessments (Planning & Regulatory Context study and a Value and Management Report) and Design Portfolio (Workbook)
2) Apply an understanding of the regulations, procedures and the professional and practical stages of a process of procurement, in relation to a design project; Coursework Assessments (Planning & Regulatory Context study and a Value and Management Report) and Design Portfolio (Workbook)
3) Demonstrate an ability to critically appraise and reflect upon their own working practices and those of others, whilst working individually or as part of a team; Coursework Assessments (Planning & Regulatory Context study and a Value and Management Report) and Design Portfolio (Workbook)
4) Analyse and critically appraise a brief for a design proposal, establishing programmatic and end user requirements in relation to a given site and context; Design Portfolio (Workbook).
5) Critique propositional work through a number of iterative cycles, representing and evaluating these and reflecting upon the reasons for change; Design Portfolio (Workbook).
6) Respond to the professional, regulatory, social, environmental and ethical issues within the context of a design project. Design Portfolio (Workbook).

Elements of Assessment

Description of Assessment Definitive UNISTATS Categories Percentage
Coursework Assessment 1 (Planning and Regulatory Context study) Practical examination 15%
Coursework Assessment 2 (Value and Management Report) Coursework 15%
Design portfolio (Workbook) Coursework 70%
Total (to equal 100%) 100%

Achieving a pass

It is a requirement that the elements of assessment for Coursework are passed on aggregate and it is a requirement that the element of assessment for the Design Portfolio is passed separately in order to achieve an overall pass for the module.

Bibliography core texts

RIBA Plan of Work 2007 & 2013

3DReid, 2008, Architect's Job Book. 8th ed. London: RIBA Publications

RIBA, 2009, A Clients Guide to Engaging and Architect: Guidance on hiring an darchitectur for your project. London: RIBA Publications

ARB Code of Conduct

HSE, 2007. Managing Health and Safety in Construction. London: HSE Books

Bibliography recommended reading

Studios will provide specific recommended reading lists relevant to each project.

Speaight, A. 2010. Architect's Legal Handbook. 9th ed. Oxford: Architectural Press

Halliday, S., 2007. Green Guide to the Architect's Handbook. London: RIBA Publishing

Polley, S., 2011. Understanding the Building Regulations. London: Spon Press

Tricker, R. and Alford, S., 2012. Building Regulations in Brief. 7th ed. London: Routledge

Dijksman,K., 2008. The Planning Game. Ovolo

Sinclair, D., 2011. Leading the Team: An Architects Guide to Design Management. London: RIBA Publishing

Cave,A., 2007. Legislation Maze: Inclusive Accessible Design. London: RIBA Publishing

Barker,A., 2006. Improve your Communication Skills. London: Kogan Page

RIBA Good Practice Guides - various

Centre for Accessible Environments (CAE) guides - various

Planning portal (planning and building regulations)

Gov.uk (planning and building legislation)

HSE (Construction, Design (Management))

Architects Registration Board - (code of conduct)

Royal Institute of British Architects

Professional Experience and Development Record

Lynda.com

Studios will provide specific recommended reading lists relevant to each project.

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