Virtual Cities - ARCH8220

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2023 to 2024
Combined Autumn and Spring Terms 7 30 (15) Howard Griffin checkmark-circle


This module will explore the digital representation of and in the urban environment. Students will use 2D and 3D software to develop the relationship between actual and virtual cities, navigating the past, present and future. Drawing from professional practice in a number of industries, such as architectural visualisation, projection-mapping, heritage, film and games, this work highlights the differing approaches that each profession takes in the digital creative process.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 60 hours
Private study hours: 240 hours
Total study hours: 300 hours

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods

Presentation and critique of Digital Projects (100%)

Reassessment methods
Like for like.

Indicative reading

Indicative Reading List

Byrnes, D. (2009). AutoCAD 2010 for Dummies. Hoboken: Wiley Publishing.
Cusson, R & Cardoso, J. (2009). Realistic Architectural Vizualisation with 3DS MAX and Mental Ray (Second Edition). Oxford: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Murdock, K. (2009). 3DS MAX 2010 Bible. Indianapolis: Wiley Publishing.
Sondermann, H. (2009). Photoshop in Architectural Graphics. New York: Springer Wien

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to demonstrate:

1 An understanding of the principles of 3D modelling in a digital environment and its application to the architectural, games and film industries
2 A comprehensive understanding of the techniques associated with the creation of complex digital architectural and urban models, their environmental conditions and the
format of output appropriate to its market
3 An ability to create complex 3D digital models of an architectural or urban nature, evaluating the realism and graphic format appropriate to its target market
4 An ability to evaluate working methodologies and current industrial practice, developing skills and techniques

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to demonstrate:

1 An ability to demonstrate self-direction and act autonomously in planning and creating 3D digital modelling at a professional level
2 An ability to deal with complex issues both systematically and creatively, make sound judgements in the absence of complete data, and communicate their conclusions
clearly to specialist and non-specialist audiences
3 An ability to independently advance their knowledge and understanding of 3D digital modelling and develop skills to a professional level


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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