Course specification and structure
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PIPSARC2 - Professional Diploma in Architecture (RIBA 2)

Course Specification


Validation status Validated
Highest award Professional Diploma in Architecture Level Masters
Possible interim awards Graduate Diploma, Graduate Certificate
Total credits for course 240
Awarding institution London Metropolitan University
Teaching institutions London Metropolitan University
School The Sir John Cass School of Art, Architecture and Design (The Cass)
Subject Area Architecture
Attendance options
Option Minimum duration Maximum duration
Full-time 2 YEARS  
Part-time 3 YEARS  
Course leader  

About the course and its strategy towards teaching and learning and towards blended learning/e-learning

The overall aims of the course are to provide an advanced architectural education for students already qualified at degree level with exemption from RIBA (Part 1). The course forms the second part of their five year (full-time or part-time equivalent) programme of academic studies, before embarking upon, what is normally, the second part of a total two year period in practice, leading to final professional qualification in Architecture, RIBA (Part 3).

The educational strategy of the course is rooted in three important principles: the commitment to a deep understanding of architecture; a high degree of personal motivation; and the experience of a shared culture of learning.

Understanding and motivation are vital to the production of the good quality design work, demanded by the discipline. The shared culture of learning is important to our student body, with its broad range of cultural viewpoints.

Characteristic of design education is the process of learning based on activity and experience, particularly through project work. Knowledge and understanding are acquired in a multi-dimensional way with a high degree of personal involvement. The popularity of design education is partly based upon its teaching and learning techniques, and many of them are common to both undergraduate degree and postgraduate education. The main differences between the levels may be found in the greater sophistication of postgraduate study, its emphasis on independent learning and self-motivation, depth of knowledge, research and professional skills and the synthesis of complex issues.

Course aims

The aims are equivalent in scope and achievement to the ‘Criteria for Validation’ 2011, issued by the Royal Institute of British Architects and the Architects Registration Board.

They are summarised, as follows in sub-headed areas:

Aims

Students will qualify at (Part 2) level to enable them to continue their professional architectural training at (Part 3) and registration as an architect with ARB.

Design Education

Provide a high quality design-based education which allows a student to:

  • Understand the requirements of, and develop methods of engagement with, building users and procurers, in order to develop an appropriate and relevant brief which takes into account social, political, economic, ethical and cultural issues.
  • Develop a sophisticated design process, which answers the requirements of the brief and generates a clear and precise conceptual rationale, against which design proposals can be tested.
  • Develop a complex design scheme which is clear about how it can be realised technically, politically, economically and over time, and which integrates knowledge gained in the other key areas of the curriculum below.

Design, Technology + Environment

Understand and demonstrate within a design proposal, an ability to integrate knowledge of:

  • Structural, constructional and material strategies within the design and the construction techniques and processes necessary to realise the design.
  • Principles of visual, acoustic and thermal environments, and relationship to climate.
  • Relationship between the design and the wider environment in terms of energy consumption, sustainability and ethical development issues.
  • Provision and integration of building services.

Practice, Profession and Context

Understand the full range of responsibilities, within the remit of the professional architect, in terms of:

  • Legal, statutory, economic, management ethical, social and political obligations.
  • Understanding of methods of procurement and delivery of architectural projects
  • Development of methods of negotiation and team working with all individuals encountered within the practice of architecture; from members of the user group, to client, to specialist consultant, to contractor.

Understanding of the histories and theories of architecture, and urbanism that guide and support the design.

Development of an attitude toward these many and various obligations within project design work and integrate this knowledge into the design proposals.

Culture

  • To provide a lively and energetic environment which encourages students to get involved with, and to contribute to their subject through events, exhibitions, visiting individuals and groups, action research and international links.
  • To emphasise socially committed design practices in design project work and to encourage students to engage with the ethical dimensions of architecture, through the Faculty’s strong links with the local area and community.

Course learning outcomes

By the end of the course, students will, through their academic portfolio, demonstrate that they have met the ARB & RIBA (jointly held) criteria for Part 2 and the student attributes at Part 2. Course learning outcomes are fully mapped against the ARB/RIBA General Criteria and the Graduate Attributes at Part 2, within the Part 2 Module Mapping document (as validated by ARB and RIBA in 2012).

11.a Knowledge and Understanding

By the end of the course, the student is expected to:

  1. Acquire and develop comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the social, political, economic, environmental and professional contexts that guides architectural practice and the built environment, and be able to situate design decision-making within these contexts through engagement with, and response to a wide range of stakeholders within the built environment.

  1. Develop a deeper knowledge and understanding of appropriate, advanced and sophisticated theoretical and research methods / techniques for application within their own design process and formulate and communicate relevant, direct and well founded conceptual frameworks that underpin and provide a rationale for a design proposal.

  1. Acquire a deeper and systematic understanding of historical and theoretical frameworks and complex cultural traditions that guide the discipline of architecture.

  1. Demonstrate a critical understanding of how knowledge is advanced through research to produce clear, logically argued and original written work relating to architectural culture, theory and design.

  1. Acquire a deeper and systematic knowledge and understanding of structural, constructional and environmental solutions, strategies and techniques and how these can be manipulated and applied to coherent architectural design.

11.b Cognitive Skills/ Intellectual Skills

By the end of the course, the student is expected to develop higher order skills that are reflected in their ability to:

1. Develop design ability through an iterative process which tests, communicates and negotiates ideas and propositions through critical and self-reflective processes.

2. Construct effective design processes that can be used to test concepts and evaluate initial proposal. Direct and manage a complex and specialised design process and present this to a high standard using visual, verbal and written methods, which are accessible to a wide audience of both professional and lay audiences.

3. Demonstrate, within design work, technical expertise and the ability to devise appropriate structural and constructional strategies and innovative solutions to address particular problems.

4. Develop the ability to manage and negotiate the implications of ethical dilemmas with respect to design proposals and formulate possible solutions. Undertake specific and appropriate analysis of complex and contradictory situations within all stages of design project work.

11.c Practical Skills

By the end of the course, the student is expected to:

  1. Understand the use of management structures, other professionals, consultants and organisational infrastructures within the profession of architecture, and develop tactics and responses in situating individual design process and propositional work within this environment. Develop effective means of group or team working, both with other students and outside parties, involving negotiation, decision- making and problem solving.

  1. Demonstrate an ability to evaluate and apply a comprehensive range of visual, oral and written media to test, analyse, critically appraise and explain design proposals.

  1. Demonstrate ability to evaluate materials, processes and techniques that apply to complex architectural designs and building construction, and to integrate these into practicable design proposals.

  1. Understanding of the context of the architect and the construction industry, including the architect’s role in the processes of procurement and building production, and under legislation.

  1. Demonstrate problem solving skills, professional judgment, and ability to take the initiative and make appropriate decisions in complex and unpredictable circumstances.

  1. Demonstrate an ability to identify individual learning needs and understand the personal responsibility required to prepare for qualification as an architect.

11.d Key/Transferable Skills

By the end of the course, the student is expected to:

  1. Communicate effectively in writing and representational drawn techniques and in oral presentation of complex design concepts and propositions.

  1. Apply research and design skills appropriately and be able to transfer techniques from one field of architecture to another.

  1. Work as a member of a team.

  1. Manage time and resources.

  1. Learn independently, with open mindedness and in the spirit of critical enquiry.

Course learning outcomes / Module cross reference

Knowledge & Understanding

11a1 Acquire and develop comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the social, political, economic, environmental and professional contexts that guides architectural practice and the built environment, and be able to situate design decision-making within these contexts through engagement with, and response to a wide range of stakeholders within the built environment:

AR7030 Design: Subject & Context,
AR7021 Design: Process & Proposal
AR7023 Advocacy, Practice beyond Aesthetics
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning & Urban Design
AR7052 Urban Design
AR7P24 Design Thesis project: Specialisation + Proposition
AR7P25 Design Project: Resolution

11a2 Develop a deeper knowledge and understanding of appropriate, advanced and sophisticated theoretical and research methods / techniques for application within their own design process and formulate and communicate relevant, direct and well founded conceptual frameworks that underpin and provide a rationale for a design proposal:

AR7030 Design: Subject & Context,
AR7021 Design: Process & Proposal
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning & Urban Design
AR7052 Urban Design
AR7P24 Design Thesis project: Specialisation + Proposition
AR7P25 Design Project: Resolution

11a3 Acquire a deeper and systematic understanding of historical and theoretical frameworks and complex cultural traditions that guide the discipline of architecture:

AR7004 Cinema and the City
AR7006 The forgetting of Air
AR7049 The Problem of Irony
AR7051 Writing about Architecture
AR7061 The Soundscape of Modernity
AR7001 Histories
AR7002 Theories
AR7003 Interpretation
AR7070 Planning and Urban Theory
AR7026 Integrated Design Study

11a4 Demonstrate a critical understanding of how knowledge is advanced through research to produce clear, logically argued and original written work relating to architectural culture, theory and design:

AR7049 The Problem of Irony
AR7004 Cinema and the City
AR7045 Concepts of Space
AR7006 The Forgetting of Air
AR7051 Writing about Architecture
AR7061 The Soundscape of Modernity
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11a5 Acquire a deeper and systematic knowledge and understanding of structural, constructional and environmental solutions, strategies and techniques and how these can be manipulated and applied to coherent architectural design:

AR7022 Applied Technology in Architecture
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

Cognitive Skills/ Intellectual Skills

11b1 Develop design ability through an iterative process which tests, communicates and negotiates ideas and propositions through critical and self-reflective processes:

AR7030 Design: Subject and Context
AR7021 Design: Process + Proposal
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning & Urban Design
AR7052 Urban Design
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11b2 Construct effective design processes that can be used to test concepts and evaluate initial proposal. Direct and manage a complex and specialised design process and present this to a high standard using visual, verbal and written methods, which are accessible to a wide audience of both professional and lay audiences:

AR7030 Design: Subject and Context
AR7021 Design: Process + Proposal
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning & Urban Design
AR7052 Urban Design
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11b3 Demonstrate, within design work, technical expertise and the ability to devise appropriate structural and constructional strategies and innovative solutions to address particular problems:

AR7022 Applied Technology in Architecture
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11b4 Develop the ability to manage and negotiate the implications of ethical dilemmas with respect to design proposals and formulate possible solutions. Undertake specific and appropriate analysis of complex and contradictory situations within all stages of design project work:

AR7022 Applied Technology in Architecture
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

Practical Skills

11c1 Understand the use of management structures, other professionals, consultants and organisational infrastructures within the profession of architecture, and develop tactics and responses in situating individual design process and propositional work within this environment. Develop effective means of group or team working, both with other students and outside parties, involving negotiation, decision- making and problem solving:

AR7023 Advocacy: Practice beyond Aesthetics
AR7022 Applied Technology in Architecture
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11c2 Demonstrate an ability to evaluate and apply a comprehensive range of visual, oral and written media to test, analyse, critically appraise and explain design proposals.:

AR7030 Design: Subject and Context
AR7021 Design: Process + Proposal
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning & Urban Design
AR7052 Urban Design
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11c3 Demonstrate ability to evaluate materials, processes and techniques that apply to complex architectural designs and building construction, and to integrate these into practicable design proposals:

AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11c4 Understanding of the context of the architect and the construction industry, including the architect’s role in the processes of procurement and building production, and under legislation:

AR7023 Advocacy: Practice beyond Aesthetics
AR7022 Applied Technology in Architecture
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11c5 Demonstrate problem solving skills, professional judgment, and ability to take the initiative and make appropriate decisions in complex and unpredictable circumstances:

AR7030 Design: Subject and Context
AR7021 Design: Process + Proposal
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning & Urban Design
AR7052 Urban Design
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11c6 Demonstrate an ability to identify individual learning needs and understand the personal responsibility required to prepare for qualification as an architect:

AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

Transferable Skills

11d1 Communicate effectively in writing and representational drawn techniques and in oral presentation of complex design concepts and propositions:

AR7030 Design: Subject and Context
AR7021 Design: Process + Proposal
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning & Urban Design
AR7052 Urban Design
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11d2 Apply research and design skills appropriately and be able to transfer techniques from one field of architecture to another:

AR7030 Design: Subject and Context
AR7021 Design: Process + Proposal
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning & Urban Design
AR7052 Urban Design
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11d3 Work as a member of a team:

AR7030 Design: Subject and Context
AR7021 Design: Process + Proposal
AR7022 Applied Technology in Architecture
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning & Urban Design
AR7052 Urban Design
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation +
Proposition
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution
AR7P26 Integrated Design Study

11d4 Manage time and resources:

AR7030 Design: Subject and Context
AR7021 Design: Process + Proposal
AR7022 Applied Technology in Architecture
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning & Urban Design
AR7052 Urba

Principle QAA benchmark statements

QAA Architecture Benchmark Statement

Assessment strategy

The module assessments take place on completion of the module. The timetable of assessments is published at the beginning of each academic year, allowing students to plan their time and set their priorities. The Subject Studies modules and Design Studies modules have different forms of assessment.

The Design Studies modules are assessed through the portfolio of design work, completed within the studio unit teaching group. The portfolio is a graphically based academic document, which contains a variety of different types of work arranged in projects. The portfolio is organised by the student, to demonstrate their learning processes and their achievements. Submissions are made up of drawings, models, photographic work, reproductions, CAD work, video, written text, reports and other media or techniques as appropriate.

All Subject Studies modules and components of modules are assessed in the first instance by the module tutors. Subject Studies modules and their components are second marked by one of the subject team and the assessments are made available, to the external examiner, following University procedures.

All taught modules and the Dissertation or Project module, are marked on a percentage scale. Post-degree Level modules (marked level 6) have a pass/fail threshold of 50%. Masters Level modules (Level 7) have a pass/fail threshold of 50%.

Based on the final aggregate of average percentage results, The Professional Diploma in Architecture (RIBA 2) awards are classified as: Pass (50 – 59.9%), Pass with Merit (60 –69.9%), or Pass with Distinction (70% plus).

Organised work experience, work based learning, sandwich year or year abroad

Work based learning is embedded within the course through engagement in live projects and exhibitions, where students are required to take on organisational and entrepreneurial activities to support the marketing and presentation of their own practice or a collaborative venture.

Course specific regulations

The Course conforms to University Academic Regulations; the Professional Awards Framework and Regulations.

The Professional Diploma is a vocational post-degree course which conforms to the requirements of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)/Architects Registration Board (ARB) so as to enable achievement of RIBA/ARB (Part 2) exemption on successful completion. These regulations are derived from the London Metropolitan University Professional Awards Framework and Regulations, but are adapted to take account of the fact that the Professional Diploma is a combination Level 6 and Level 7 course. In these regulations, the course is referred to as a 4th and 5th year programme (4, 5, and 6 or part-time students), because it is a direct continuation of the 3 years of undergraduate degree studies.

There are also specific assessment and award regulations for the course:

The Professional Diploma in Architecture shall be awarded to a student, who has passed modules equivalent to 240 credit points at FHEQ levels 6 and 7, within their approved programme of study.

Classification

Professional Diploma with Distinction shall be awarded to a student who attains an average mark of 70% or over in modules equivalent to 200 credit points (including AR7P24N and AR7P25N).

Professional Diploma with Merit shall be awarded to a student who attains an average mark of 60% or over in modules equivalent to 200 credit points (including AR7P24N and AR7P25N)

RIBA & ARB (Part 2)

A student who has completed and passed the Professional Diploma in Architecture - and who already has RIBA & ARB (Part 1) Exemption - is automatically eligible for RIBA & ARB (Part 2) Exemption.

A student who completes the course, but has not achieved RIBA and ARB (Part 1) Exemption, is not

eligible for the Award of Professional Diploma in Architecture.

Professional Bodies

The course is validated by the Royal institute of British Architects and is prescribed by the Architects Registration Board. As such, it offers exemption from the RIBA & ARB (Part 2) examination. Students entering the course should normally have RIBA & ARB (Part 1) Exemption. EU and Overseas students who do not have (Part 1) are required to apply directly to the ARB, for this exemption. If they do not apply or are not awarded, they will not be able to progress to fifth year and will not be eligible for the award of Professional Diploma in Architecture.

Modules required for interim awards

The course also offers an interim award of Post Graduate Certificate in Architecture, for students who achieve 60 M level credits and Post Graduate Diploma in Architecture for students who achieve 120 M level credits during one year of study.

Professional Statutory and Regulatory Body (PSRB) accreditations & exemptions

Our course is fully accredited by the RIBA and ARB. Upon graduation you will receive your RIBA part 2 qualification, the second stage of three in the professional qualification of an Architect in the UK.

Career opportunities

After securing a Professional Diploma in Architecture (RIBA 2), many students decide to study the Examination in Professional Practice (RIBA 3), following a period of practical experience. RIBA 2 also enables you to progress to a specialised Masters course.

Entry requirements

You will be required to have:

  • a good degree in architecture
  • passed RIBA Part 1
  • the ability to demonstrate your talent as a designer as well as your motivation to complete the course successfully

All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.

Selected candidates are asked to attend an interview with their portfolio, which should include a wide range of work.

Official use and codes

Approved to run from 2013/14 Specification version 1 Specification status Validated
Original validation date 01 Sep 2013 Last validation date 01 Sep 2013  
Sources of funding HE FUNDING COUNCIL FOR ENGLAND
JACS codes K100 (Architecture): 100%
Route code PSARC2

Course Structure

Stage 1 Level 07 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
AR6021 Design Level 4 Process and Proposal Core 20        
AR6022 Applied Technology in Architecture Core 40        
AR6023 Advocacy: Practice Beyond Aesthetics Core 20        
AR6030 Design Level 4 Subject and Context Core 20        
AR7004 Cinema and the City Option 20 CITY SPR TUE PM
AR7006 Forgetting of Air Option 20 CITY SPR TUE AM
AR7007 Poetry and Architecture Option 20 CITY SPR WED AM
AR7008 The Question of Technology¬† Option 20 CITY SPR    
AR7045 Concepts of Space Option 20 CITY SPR    
AR7049 The Problem of Irony Option 20 CITY SPR TUE PM
AR7051 Writing About Architecture Option 20 CITY SPR WED AM
AR7052 Urban Design Option 20        
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning and Specialism Option 20        
AR7061 The Soundscape of Modernity Option 20 CITY SPR    
AR7071 Economics of Place Option 20 CITY SPR WED EV
AR7072 Sustainable Communities and Governance of Place Option 20        

Stage 1 Level 07 January start Not currently offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
AR6021 Design Level 4 Process and Proposal Core 20        
AR6022 Applied Technology in Architecture Core 40        
AR6023 Advocacy: Practice Beyond Aesthetics Core 20        
AR6030 Design Level 4 Subject and Context Core 20        
AR7004 Cinema and the City Option 20        
AR7006 Forgetting of Air Option 20        
AR7007 Poetry and Architecture Option 20        
AR7008 The Question of Technology¬† Option 20        
AR7045 Concepts of Space Option 20        
AR7049 The Problem of Irony Option 20        
AR7051 Writing About Architecture Option 20        
AR7052 Urban Design Option 20        
AR7053 Research for Spatial Planning and Specialism Option 20        
AR7061 The Soundscape of Modernity Option 20        
AR7071 Economics of Place Option 20        
AR7072 Sustainable Communities and Governance of Place Option 20        

Stage 2 Level 07 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
AR6026 Integrated Design Study Core 20        
AR7P24 Design Thesis Project: Specialisation and Propo... Core 40 CITY AUT+SPR THU AM
          CITY AUT+SPR THU PM
AR7P25 Design Thesis Project: Resolution Core 40 CITY AUT+SPR THU PM
          CITY AUT+SPR THU AM
AR7001 Histories Option 20 CITY AUT TUE AM
AR7002 Theories Option 20 CITY AUT TUE AM
AR7003 Interpretation  Option 20 CITY AUT WED PM
AR7027 Energy Comfort and Buildings Option 20        
AR7037 Changing Places Option 20        
AR7043 Advanced Digital Design Techniques Option 20 CITY AUT WED EV
AR7044 Critical Transformations Option 20 CITY AUT WED AM
AR7047 Digital Design Techniques Option 20 CITY AUT WED AM
AR7069 Planning and Urban Practice Option 20        
AR7070 Planning and Urban Theory Option 20 CITY AUT WED PM