module specification

AR6034 - Architectural Design: Direction (2019/20)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2019/20
Module status DELETED (This module is no longer running)
Module title Architectural Design: Direction
Module level Honours (06)
Credit rating for module 20
School School of Art, Architecture and Design
Total study hours 200
151 hours Guided independent study
39 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
10 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 100%   Portfolio
Running in 2019/20

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
No instances running in the year

Module summary

Architectural Design: Direction is the pivot point between the Inter- Practice Year and the Proto-Practice Year. Emerging directly from Urban Studies (AR6031), it commences with a mid-year review of personally conducted research and culminates in a condensed block of teaching towards the end of the year. It draws together the abilities and knowledge developed in the previous modules – Urban Studies (AR6031), Critical Practice (AR6W32 and AR6W33) and the Design Think Tank Project (AR7P74) – to establish a roadmap for the subsequent modules – Architectural Design: Speculation (AR6035) and the Comprehensive Design Project (Y2_CDP). Progressing from collaborative and professional activities, students will formalise their individual architectural agenda, identifying site(s), programme(s) and demographic group(s) for their Proto- Practice Year design projects.

This module aims to enhance a student’s ability to research and develop the early stages of a design project, moving between urban analysis, community/user engagement, programmatic research and strategic proposition to create an architectural brief.

It seeks to enable students to define a personal agenda developed from reflections on the intersections of urban theory, social, economic and political frameworks and the macro and micro environmental conditions that contextualise professional practice.


Led by the Inter-Practice Year Director, with the involvement of the Proto-Practice Year Director and other staff, students will be supported to identify a range of individual architectural concerns by producing a written and drawn portfolio which will outline:

• An architectural theme or thesis question;
• Architectural site(s) in the borough;
• A ‘client’ – institution/user group/demographic etc;
• An approach to the LSA five P.R.I.M.E. Values: Propositional, Relevant, Innovative, Metropolitan, Entrepreneurial
• The terms of design experimentation – what is to be tested? What is the appropriate design methodology to progress it? How can this be evidenced and evaluated through a design proposal?

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Students will learn through the following range of teaching and events:
• A briefing during orientation week introducing the key learning principles of the module;
• Seminars of work in progress with the Module Leader and peers;
• Group tutorials with the Module Leader and peers;
• Feedback from experts and peers at a crit

Learning outcomes

(Please refer to the LSA Programme Specification for more detailed descriptors page 51-57)

On completion of this module students are expected, within the scope of a personal project brief, to be able to:

LO.1 Summarise relevant theories of urban design and the planning of communities in relation to their site (GC4.1)

LO.2 Assess how the needs and aspirations of their identified user group and the local inhabitants are affected by – and can influence – the scale and quality of their architectural proposal and its relationship to the urban fabric (GC5.1)

LO.3 Analyse, within the professional and social context of their role as an architect, the potential impact of their building proposal on existing and proposed communities (GC6.3)

LO.4 Compose a brief that defines client and user requirements in relation to a building scale, programme and type appropriate to its site and context (GC7.2)

LO.5 Apply appropriate methods of investigation and preparation to the formulation of a design project brief, identifying their role and contribution to the process as an architect in relation to their co-professionals (GC7.3)

Assessment strategy

The module is summatively assessed through one component:

Portfolio (100%)

Students define and argue a position in the form of a brief articulated through a richly illustrated portfolio. This brief should formulate research questions around design experimentation and exploration, and define an appropriate methodology that takes account of design ethos, site, precedents, programme and client. This component assesses Learning Outcomes LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4, LO5.

There will be formative feedback during the module delivered through group tutorials and seminars of work in progress. There will be written formative feedback on a formal presentation seminar presentation of research in week 36. Feedback will be recorded and provided to students in line with approved Faculty procedures and timelines. Written feedback will be provided following summative assessment in weeks 41 and 43. Feedback will follow the Faculty policy of ‘feed forward’ clearly identifying both strengths of the work reviewed as well as areas and ways to improve work for the future.


• Specific to the project briefs.