Art & Design - LZ038

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2018-19 2019-20
(version 2)
View Timetable
3 60 (30)


Co-requisite modules include: 1 subject module selected from the options available on the International Foundation Programme.





This module provides students with an introduction to elementary spatial design theory and practice. It prepares students for Stage One entry into degree courses in architecture, interior design and interior architecture, in addition to associated areas of design study.
Key curriculum areas:
  • Observation (how to read spatial environments)
  • Making (basic principles of construction of objects and environments)
  • Recording & communication (skills in freehand drawing, basic workshop techniques for making maquettes, and photography)
  • Formal manipulation through design projects (scale, the user, synthesis of competing demands)
  • Basic principles of design history
  • Brief making and questioning
  • Field trip
  • The syllabus comprises the following subject areas:
    i. History/theory and construction/manufacture
    ii. Observation and documentation
    iii. Systems of communication: drawings, scale, model making, photography.
    iv. Design Project


    Contact hours

    Contact hours per week

    a. Using a combination of formal and informal teaching, contact time will be used to introduce key theoretical concepts, as well as discuss, demonstrate and provide practical activities aimed at introducing and developing a variety of skills. Guided self-study work and practice will be used to further enhance practical skills. The aim of this work is to make students confident to initiate, research, experiment with, develop and communicate design proposals. The exercises provided give students practical tasks to perform; these gradually widen their understanding of spatial design.
    b. As a 60-credit module with a significant skills-based component, students are expected to attend a one hour lecture (each week in the autumn term, or Spring term for the January programme) (11hrs); six hours of seminar & architecture workshop sessions per week over 22 weeks (132hrs), and to complete 16 hours of private study per week over 22 weeks. During the summer term (summer vacation period for January students), students are expected to work approximately 21 hours per week over five weeks completing their projects/portfolio with support provided by teachers) . This constitutes a total of 457 hours of private study. (Total 600 hours)


    For an indication of costs please see a materials list for stage one architecture students at Students on this module will require some, but not all, of the equipment listed.

    Method of assessment

    The module will be assessed through 100% coursework consisting of the following:

    Project 1 Observation/Drawing /Presentation
    Series of observations measurements and sketches compiled between weeks 1-5. Weight 10%

    Project 2 Observation/ Drawing/Presentation
    Series of observations measurements and sketches compiled between weeks 7-11. Weight 15%

    Project 3 Brief making / design / presentation
    Compilation of design proposals, models and a final object between weeks 13 and 17. Final result is a working container. Weight 20%

    Project 4 Brief making/ design/ presentation
    Compilation of design proposals, models and a final object between weeks 19 and 23. Final result is a chair. Weight 25%

    Illustrated written report
    1800 words, plus illustrations, on a feature of the built environment. Draft & Final versions assessed (30/70). Weight 15%

    Portfolio 15-20 minute (oral) Portfolio presentation
    Portfolio including four items:
    • Review of projects 1-4
    • Studio work/drawings
    • Personal work/Drawings
    • 2 pieces of short written work
    Weight 15%

    Preliminary reading

    Berger, J. (2008) Ways of Seeing. (Reprint Edition). London: Penguin Classics
    Ching, F. (2008) Architecture: Form. Space & Order. London: Wiley
    Collings, Matthew (1999) This is Modern Art, London: Weidenfeld & Nicholson.Garner, S. (2004) An Introduction to Design and Designing. New York: Open University.
    Rasmussen, S.E. (1962) Experiencing Architecture: Cambridge, Mass: MIT
    Risebero, Bill (2001) The Story of Western Architecture. London: Herbert Press Ltd.
    Stevens Curl, J. (1999) A Dictionary of Architecture. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

    See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

    See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

    Learning outcomes

    By the end of the course, you should be able to…
    1. Investigate and differentiate between various physical forms and spatial organisations and relationships
    2. Experience the designed environment and represent and communicate your observations
    3. Relate designs to individual and social imperatives in order to formulate a design brief
    4. Engage in preliminary spatial design exercises


    Students must pass all components of the Foundation Programme with 60% overall and attain an overall mark of 60% for this module to continue onto BA architecture.

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