Design projects are the core of the architecture and architectural engineering programmes, bringing together technical and creative skills. Knowledge from other modules is applied to explore and solve practical challenges and at the same time develop your creative and visual communications abilities. Design projects involve some group work, in part as a model for professional working, but are mainly individual responses to a brief. Projects are given real-world settings and investigate the design of current building types. The Design Studio, a dedicated space which encourages collaborative working within and across year groups, is the home base for these projects which are supported by academic staff and external tutors who are practising architects or engineers.
In year 1, the curriculum is shared by all undergraduates, so the design projects are common to all. They include a series of small-scale designs which are set on the University campus and develop understanding of basic principles of form, space and materials. Students develop observational, sketching, technical drawing and CAD skills as well as co-operation within a small team.
In year 2, Architecture and Architectural Engineering students work on designs for a relatively small but self-contained building, developing their own response to a brief and its location in the city, in particular the ways in which the building envelope defines internal and external space. Physical models are a key part of exploring and refining form, structure and construction strategies, with graphic presentations describing proposals in more detail.
At the end of your second year, you’ll have the opportunity to take part in our optional Construction Site Field Course module, which is an exciting hands-on construction experience contributing towards your third year. The course will challenge you to use your theoretical knowledge and practical skills on a reduced scale construction project, as well as providing you with an understanding of a wide variety of design- and construction-related issues.
You’ll work in teams to construct scaled-down versions of bridges, buildings and other civil engineering projects over a five-day period. Recent examples include The Gherkin, Ravenspurn Oil Rig and Brewery Wharf Footbridge. On the final day you’ll be assessed in terms of budgetary control, methodology and timely completion.
You must apply to take the module early in your second year and you’ll be selected for participation on the basis of your academic and industrial/practical profile.
In year 3, there are two design studio projects. In Semester 1, Architecture students go on a study visit to a European city, with design projects asking students to respond to distinctive cultural and urban forms investigated there. In Semester 2, a comprehensive design for a building in the city challenges Architecture and Architectural Engineering students to investigate a site and multi-storey building type in detail, before proposing individual brief and design proposals. Design schemes include creative spatial, structural and building physics solutions, with students developing increasingly sophisticated visual communications skills.
In year 4, the linked design studio projects form the largest element of the year for the Architecture and Architectural Engineering students. They are the culmination of the programmes’ synthesis of creative and technical learning. All students investigate, analyse and develop a highly individual interpretation of a given brief, producing sophisticated and technically demanding integrated solutions, using a range of digital and physical techniques to communicate conceptual ideas and design proposals.
Nursyaza Izazi Architecture MEng
The Architecture course gives me different opportunities for the fields I want to pursue after I graduate. It combines the two most important aspects in construction; structures and architecture. I'm able to learn about construction in a deeper level and from different views.View Profile