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2023/24 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

CIVE5840M Design Studio 4.1

30 creditsClass Size: 40

Module manager: Mr Justin Lunn ARB

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

Pre-requisite qualifications

The standard qualifications (or equivalent) set by the School of Civil Engineering for entry to any of its JBM accredited UG programmes.

Module replaces

CIVE5855M - Architectural Engineering Design Studio 4.1 (Concept)

This module is not approved as an Elective


This module will demonstrate the students' ability to create architectural designs that satisfy both aesthetic and technical requirements.

Knowledge developed in this module includes appreciation and understanding of advanced theoretical design concepts as applied to practical design consideration; further development of an understanding relating cultural and technological context to the built environment; a wider understanding of building types and precedent. There is also knowledge gained relating to statutory regulations including the processes of planning policy and building control, as well as a critical appraisal of structural, building physics and construction approaches.

Learning outcomes
Students completing this module will have gained the knowledge, understanding, skills or abilities that contribute to achieving the following ARB General Criteria for Part 1:
1. prepare and present building design projects of diverse scale, complexity, and type in a variety of contexts, using a range of media, and in response to a brief; GC1.1.
2. the application of appropriate theoretical concepts to studio design projects, demonstrating a reflective and critical approach; GC2.3.
3. the need to critically review precedents relevant to the function, organisation and technological strategy of design proposals; GC7.1.
4. the need to appraise and prepare building briefs of diverse scales and types, to define client and user requirements and their appropriateness to site and context, GC7.2

Skills outcomes
Team working and collaboration in a creative context, individual graphic presentation skills, hand drawing, CAD modelling, building information modelling (BIM) and physical modelling skills. Site appraisal and precedent research skills.


Students undertake a short series of building design studies, in a given site context. Students undertake a context study to include an extended site analysis of a given urban area, including physical characteristics, social and policy setting and urban design analysis. A precedent study is carried out to investigate the characteristics and background to two different building types, typically a small scale public function such as a library, art gallery or community resource building.

Working individually, students investigate two building designs in sequence, for different building types on different given sites. Each design explores design proposals and presents interpretations of the given brief as outline building designs, so that form, layout, materiality and relation to context are shown, as well as explaining the theoretical concepts used to underpin the design schemes. Students produce drawings, models and illustrated reports to describe and explain their proposals.

Typical reading materials for this module include:
Ching, F. (1975 on). Architectural Graphics. Wiley.
Ching, F. (2007). Architecture – Form, Space and Order (3rd edition) Wiley.
Frampton, K. (1995). Studies in tectonic culture. MIT Press.
Braham, W. and Hale, J. (eds). (2006). Rethinking Technology: a reader in architectural theory. Routledge, London
Mallgrave, H. F. and Contandriopoulos (eds). (2008). Architectural Theory, Volume 2: An anthology from 1871–2005. Oxford, Blackwell
Szokolay, S. V. (2010). Introduction to architectural science. The basis of sustainable design (2nd edition). Oxford: Architectural Press, Elsevier.
Popovic Larsen, O. and Tyas, A. (2003). Conceptual structural design: bridging the gap between architects and engineers. London: ICE publishing.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Group learning24.008.00
Private study hours270.00
Total Contact hours30.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)300.00

Private study

Individual and group research for background studies, including: informal site surveys, precedent gathering from online, journal or book sources. Group and individual collation, analysis and critical evalulation of information. Group and individual development of creative design ideas, presentation materials.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Through regular small group and individual (1-to-1) tutorial sessions. Also through an interim review of the student's work carried out by the supervisory team of staff and students.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
ReportDesign report (individual submission accompanied by a physical model and sketchbook)80.00
Group ProjectSite analysis presentation10.00
Group ProjectPrecedent Study Presentation10.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Resit: 100% report.

Reading list

There is no reading list for this module

Last updated: 28/04/2023 14:52:56


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