ARCT10090 History & Theory of the Designed Environment I - Perspectives on Architecture

Academic Year 2019/2020

The purpose of this course is to introduce the student to the various ways of approaching and learning about the history and theory of the designed environment. It is intended to build a common knowledge base for future architects, designers, landscape architects, planners and others involved in the procurement and management of the designed physical environment. Notwithstanding this perspective, it is accessible to all. It is an introductory course that covers several perspectives on architectural, urban and landscape forms. The narrative embraces a number of themes that embody cultural contexts, the impact of science and technology, and the work of individual designers, architects and patrons within a predominately European context. This course also seeks to indicate the relationship to other material cultural artifacts and explore cultural exchanges beyond Europe. Central to the course is the development of an understanding of how traditions, images and ideas have been assimilated to create new forms that respond and adapt to new requirements.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of this module students should be able to:
1. Describe the physical form of significant buildings, settlements, cities and designed
landscapes in a predominately European context;
2. Analyse, through various approaches and perspectives, how buildings, settlements, cities and designed landscapes over this period responded to functional, aesthetic and structural criteria;
3. Discuss the way in which societies and cultures convey meaning through the artefacts of the designed
4. Reflect on how architecture, settlements and landscapes have evolved over time borrowing from tradition to solve problems and create new forms.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours


Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
This module emphasises the development of critical, independent thinking in the undergraduate curriculum. Students are asked to observe architecture (broadly conceived to include buildings, landscapes and structures) in person and learn to describe them with clarity and objectivity. Group assignments focus on building teamwork and writing, as well as editing skills. Research methods are introduced through assignments. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.  
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Examination: Reflective and Analytical Essays 2 hour End of Trimester Exam No Graded No


Assignment: Formal Analysis Unspecified n/a Graded No


Assignment: Observational Analysis Unspecified n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Remediation Type Remediation Timing
In-Module Resit Prior to relevant Programme Exam Board
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Group feedback is given after completion of the first two assignments. Informal feedback sessions are also incorporated in class workshops and small writing assignments throughout the semester. Students are encouraged to give informal feedback to their peers through group tasks.

Timetabling information is displayed only for guidance purposes, relates to the current Academic Year only and is subject to change.  
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - Autumn: All Weeks Wed 11:00 - 12:50