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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Centre for Open Learning : Creative Arts

Undergraduate Course: Scottish Architecture: from Scara Brae to the present (LLLA07158)

Course Outline
SchoolCentre for Open Learning CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 7 (Year 1 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryA fully illustrated survey of Scottish architecture covering a broad spectrum of Scottish vernacular and designed historic buildings with terminology and styles explained throughout. All periods and styles from early medieval to the present day are covered and recent research in the field will be included.
Course description The following list is indicative; weekly content may alter from year to year, depending on current exhibitions etc.

1. Scara Brae, brochs etc. to medieval: beginnings of architecture, early structures, early influences.
2. Vernacular: rural and burghs buildings: materials, locality, weather: geographical variations; stones, slate, harl, thatch, etc. design of croft houses; later buildings: characteristics: roof structures, dormers, skews, etc. Revival vs survival of traditional forms.
3. Churches, Palaces and tower houses: Gothic and Romanesque styles; plan and elevation of the tower house; tower and jamb forms: impact of French chateau styles on Scottish castles.
4. Scottish Classicism: Bruce, Edward and Mar: the classical house and its landscape design; formal plans; Scottish Historical Landscape and economic development: responses to proposal of Union of 1707.
5. Old Town of Edinburgh: urban density, topography and built environment; lands, closes, boundaries, Dean of Guild, nomenclature of old Scottish towns.
6. Robert Adam, the 18th century and neoclassical Edinburgh: intellectual context, Roman and Greek revival; travel and publication; Playfair, Hamilton and the Romantic Classical city.
7. Glasgow urban development and 19th century commercial buildings: industrial development, new typologies, factories, banks, offices. Distinguished architects: J.J. Burnett, Alexander, Greek, Thomson, Gilbert Scott, Leiper etc.
8. Baronial style, tenements, and Celtic revival: historicism and its highlights; Abbotsford, Balmoral. historicism and its problems: Highlandism, authenticity - Ruskin and Morris.
9. Charles Rennie Mackintosh to the 1930s: Mackintosh's designing - its sources and change up to 1920s; Glasgow style innovation, its aims, art and its relationship with Europe. Scotland's response to rise of the Modern Movement.
10. Late Modernism, Post-Modernism to the present: Welfare state housing - tower blocks; Matthew, Spence, Morris and Steadman - universities. Conservation and preservation over innovation. New imagery and a new dialogue: Museum of Scotland, Scottish Parliament, visitor centres etc., recent housing in Highlands.

The course will be delivered in a series of illustrated lectures. In addition to exterior styles and some landscape design the course will also focus, where appropriate, on interior design, e.g. Robert Adam and C.R. Mackintosh.

A core aim will be to consider how Scotland has maintained a distinctively Scottish architecture over all the time periods and influences. Students are encouraged to ask questions during the lectures but a time at the end of each evening will be allowed for wider discussion and questions. The students will be provided with an extensive reading list for essay preparation but there will also be a shorter recommended reading list for those not wishing to undertake detailed study.

The course will include walks in the vicinity of the Royal Mile so that the class can benefit from viewing buildings at first-hand. This type of guided walk is particularly useful for demonstrating age characteristics, materials and scale. It is also a less formal learning experience that has proved extremely popular with COL students in the past.

Students should be able to display the above learning outcomes through the essay submitted at the end of the course. Students' progress with these learning outcomes will also be assessed in the formative exercise (non-compulsory) mid-way through the course.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs 0
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate, through the summative assessment, an ability to analyse the history and character of Scottish architecture.
  2. Demonstrate, through the summative assessment, an ability to assess the processes and factors that have influenced architecture.
  3. Demonstrate, through the summative assessment, an ability to demonstrate a critical awareness of past and present-day published sources on Scottish architecture.
Reading List
Glendinning, M., MacKechnie, A., MacInnnes, R., 1996. History of Scottish Architecture from the Renaissance to the present day. Edinburgh: EUP. (Also available in a reduced version from Thames and Hudson History of Art series.)
Dunbar, J. G., 1978. The Architecture of Scotland. London: Harper Collins
Fawcett, R., 1994. Scottish Architecture from the Accession of the Stewarts to the Reformation. Edinburgh: EUP
Howard, D., 1995. Scottish Architecture: From the Reformation to the Restoration. Edinburgh: EUP.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Synthesis of information on a particular subject area; handling of sources; analysis of sources; oral communication.
Special Arrangements N/A
Study Abroad N/A
KeywordsScottish architecture
Course organiserDr Sally Crumplin
Course secretaryMs Kameliya Skerleva
Tel: (0131 6)51 1855
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