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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : Architecture and Landscape Architecture

Undergraduate Course: Landscape Architecture Placement: Design (ARCH10032)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate)
Course typePlacement AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course is part of the MA (Hons) Landscape Architecture programme. Placement refers to the period when you undertake work experience or related research into professional practice. This course provides you with the opportunity to critically reflect upon qualities of landscape architecture design practice. The course requires you to analyse and evaluate a contemporary landscape architecture design project in terms of the design, design methods engaged, and the overall design process. You will produce a 2,000-word design report, which may take the form of an illustrated logbook in which you discuss and contextualise a specific design process with the aim of demonstrating both practical and theoretical understanding.
Course description The work placement period is a significant component of the Landscape Architecture MA (Hons) curriculum, introducing you to concerns involved in professional practice and, more specifically, in landscape architecture design work carried out during placement and before full graduation.

It is also a particularly stimulating period as you will be able to gain first-hand experience of how design is practiced in a contemporary context. This course encourages you to develop critical thinking with regards contemporary landscape architecture design.

If you secure a placement with a practice studio, you will be encouraged to understand and analyse a design process you are undertaking as part of your work experience and to produce a report that documents your activities with regards to a specific design project. If you conduct a self-directed practice or design research, or work out-with conventional landscape architectural practice, you can use the enquiry to support or extend your activity. In the latter case, the log report will document your own design practice or the design practice of a third party.

You will be expected to produce a design report; which can take the form of and/or a reflective logbook. You are not required to document every single aspect of your day-to-day placement activities, but the report must focus upon design work, either emphasising the most significant project the student has worked on or on multiple design activities.

The student should seek to observe enquiries such as: a) Considering who has commissioned the work and what their agenda, motivation, expectations and aims are; b) Establishing or acknowledging the fundamental design concepts of the project; c) Determining the key design phases and questioning how these are articulated; d) Understanding when and how significant design decisions were made or revised; e) Appreciating how an iterative design process is engaged and coordinated; f) Documenting how a design has developed and identifying the key design methods that have informed the design development. Acknowledging the full range of participants that might contribute to the design. Issues concerning interdisciplinarity in practice, co-design, original versus achieved aims should be considered.

Aims of the course
1. To develop your abilities with regards the analysis of contemporary design practice based upon practical first-hand experience.
2. To encourage your ability to critically reflect upon the complexities of the design process in contemporary landscape architecture practice.
3. To cultivate methods of self-directed learning.

You will receive briefing lectures before going on placement in semester 2, then you will be supported through Online Distance Learning. You will be allocated a dedicated placement tutor to act as mentor and ensure that flexibility of contact is balanced with adequate support while you are studying off-campus.

Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements This course is only available to students enrolled on the MA (Hons) Landscape Architecture programme.
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  18
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 2, Online Activities 5, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 1, Formative Assessment Hours 1, Summative Assessment Hours 1, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 186 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) The final grade for this course is based entirely (100%) on the submission of a log report (2,000 words with illustrations), due in Week 11. Students are marked against the Learning Outcomes. The assessment is based on all the Learning Outcomes, which are weighted equally.

The course assignment is to produce a report documenting contemporary landscape design practice. The report must document distinct phases involved in a landscape architecture design project and describe the design process and methods, which have been undertaken. The report must set a contemporary landscape architecture design project in context and demonstrate a critical and analytical evaluation.

Students who secure placements might select a topic that affords reflection on their own work-experience, while students conducting self-directed practice or research might select a design project that they will be able to directly engage with and gain first-hand experience from.

The log report should formulate and express a reflective and critical opinion of the design, the design methods and the design process, while drawing on any relevant literature or data that supports your own perspective. Where possible, the log report should reflect design practice in which you have been involved.

Relationship between Assessment and Learning Outcomes:
The report is graded directly against the Learning Outcomes of the course.
Students can still pass the course overall if they fail one Learning Outcome.
Feedback a) Formative feedback
Week 6: submission on LEARN of the up-to-date log report, followed by one 1-1 tutorial (online or via telephone) for assignment development and placement support. You will receive short written formative feedback from your allocated tutor within 15 working days. You will attend one 1:1 tutorial (online of via telephone) for assignment development and placement support.

b) Summative feedback
After the submission of the 2,000-word design report you will receive short written summative feedback.
Summative feedback will comprise grading based on the course learning outcomes. All of the learning outcomes will be weighted equally.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate nuanced ability to analyse, critically evaluate and contextualise contemporary landscape architecture design projects.
  2. Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the distinct phases involved in the project design process.
  3. Demonstrate an ability to verbally and visually present the design process and methods in a coherent, well-articulated log report.
Reading List
Books and edited books:
Hans-Wolfgang, L., and Bernard, S.; Opening spaces: design as landscape architecture, (Birkhauser 2003)
Jormakka, K., and Kuhlmann, D.; Design methods, (Birkhauser, 2014)
Lawson, B.; How designers think, (Architectural Press, 1980)
Miyasaka, T.; Seeing and making in architecture: design exercises, (Routledge, 2014)
Pallasmaa, J.; The Thinking Hand: Existential and Embodied Wisdom in Architecture, (Wiley, 2009)
Oles, T., Timmermans, M., Abelman, J.; Go with me: 50 steps to landscape thinking, (Amsterdam Academy of Architecture: Architectura & Natura Publishers, 2014)
Dee, C.; To Design Landscape: Art, Nature and Utility, (Routledge, 2012)

Journals and Magazines:
Topos Magazine of Landscape Architecture
Journal of Landscape Architecture
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills This course has a substantial capacity for contributing to the development of personal and professional attributes and skills across all SCQF characteristics of learning due to the self directed nature of the course. In addition, upon the successful completion of this course you will have:

- Improved capacity to analyse and evaluate contemporary landscape architecture design enquiry
- Improved knowledge and understanding of landscape architecture working methods and design processes
- Improved evaluation and analytical skills with regards design enquiry
- Improved written communication skills
- Improved editing and curatorial skills
- Improved confidence with regards independent and autonomous working
KeywordsDesign,Contemporary landscape architecture,Critical thinking,Placement
Course organiserMr Ross McLean
Tel: (0131 6)51 5796
Course secretaryMr Brendan Sweeney
Tel: (0131 6)50 6329
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