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

Postgraduate Course: Landscape architecture techniques: Material Knowledge and Detailed Design (ARCH11274)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course is a landscape architecture techniques studio and operates in conjunction with the Landscape architecture design: Context and
Grounding studio taken in semester 1 of year 1 of the MLA programme. This course develops knowledge of and builds familiarity with landscape architecture materials including planting and their characteristics through lectures, group seminars and individual tutorial teaching. In the first part of the semester you will develop an individual contribution to a materials catalogue publication and input to and maintain a collective departmental materials library. The materials catalogue will include: research into detailed design and material and planting precedents. In the second part of the semester you will develop a detailed design proposal including material schedules and specifications based on the preliminary design you will have developed in the Context and Grounding course. You will critically reflect upon the materials and techniques investigated and deployed, positioning your detailed design work in the context of technical and sustainability and efficient resource management considerations of contemporary landscape architecture practice.
Course description The course is organised in two parts, between weeks 1 and 6 teaching and learning activities focus upon developing core knowledge of landscape architecture materials, weeks 7 to 11 will comprise activities which require the application of knowledge. The first part of the course will be delivered through lectures and in-the-field walkshops local to Edinburgh and within the Royal Botanic Gardens. The combination of lecture based and in-situ teaching and learning activities provides the basis for an integrated understanding of landscape architecture materials through coordinated specialist instruction and first hand experience in the field. You will be expected to make records through notes and sketches demonstrating your understanding of materials in field conditions and develop a critical awareness of sustainable resource management and the environmental implications of material choices. In this first part of the course you will learn fundamental characteristics of hard landscape materials, soils, plant taxonomy, physiology and culture. The course will identify knowledge and parameters fundamental to material properties, plant identification and the appropriate specification of materials with consideration for identified site conditions in combination with design project intentions and objectives. You will be introduced to essential knowledge regarding the selection and establishment of landscape materials including vegetation with the aim of developing the ability to appropriately specify materials and planting for landscape design projects. You will be expected to critically engage with the whole life cycle of the materials you are studying and contextualise material considerations within discourses of climate emergency and plant health concerns. The first part of the course will culminate in week 7 with a formative submission and presentation of a prescribed detailed material and plant catalogue, which will contribute to the department's materials library. In the second part of the studio the specific material and botanical and horticultural demands of design proposals which will have been developed in the Context and Grounding studio will be researched, tested and brought to a detailed resolution in a discrete project. The second part of the studio will begin with a site visit accompanied by RBGE tutors to the study site that has been identified as part of your studio based design course. Weekly tutorials will support you in the development of a detailed design proposal. In this course you will be introduced to the graphic conventions of detailed design in landscape architecture and the course will culminate in the individual submission of a detailed design proposal including associated schedules and material specification.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  45
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 16, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 2, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 11, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 165 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Formative:
There will be one formative feedback/feedforward point in this course comprising the submission and presentation of a prescribed landscape materials library contribution in the form of a materials catalogue to include both hard material entry and vegetation record, and demonstration of precedent of the specified material use in landscape architectural design.

Summative Assessment:
There will be two summative assignments, all learning outcomes to be addressed by both assignment outputs, each assignment marked separately.

1. One materials catalogue documenting research into a range of landscape material characteristics including plant taxonomy, physiology and culture relative to a detailed design proposal. The catalogue must describe whole life cycle of materials (manufacture, fabrication, wear and maintenance issues, reuse and recycling opportunities). You will also be asked to critically reflect upon the environmental implications of the materials you document.
Weighting 30%

2. One detailed design report communicating detailed proposals including material layout plans, planting plan, sections, materials schedule, materials specifications and summary maintenance requirements.
Weighting 70%
Feedback Formative feedback/feedforward will be verbal and will take place in the form of a group seminar. Feedback/feedforward will focus on the demonstration of the ability to precisely and concisely define and describe materials and their properties with appropriate terminology. Feedback/feedforward discussion will also evaluate knowledge and understanding of how materials can be used in different contexts and knowledge of whole life cycle of materials (manufacture, fabrication, wear and maintenance issues, reuse and recycling opportunities). You will also be asked to critically reflect upon the environmental implications of the materials you document.

Summative feedback will be provided for each assignment submission, written feedback will be provided according to learning outcome criteria.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Independently research, explore, select, and specify a range of landscape materials including planting, demonstrating their use in the resolution of a detailed design proposal and in response to site specific conditions.
  2. Apply knowledge of landscape material characteristics and selection with a critical awareness of procurement, establishment, and maintenance issues and which demonstrate an understanding of sustainability and environmental concerns.
  3. Clearly communicate an original individually authored detailed design proposal succinctly through the application of a range of appropriate graphic and written techniques recognising acknowledged codes of practice, graphic conventions and terminology specific to the discipline of landscape architecture.
Learning Resources
Ballard Bell, V., Materials for Architectural Design (2006) Laurence King
Ballard Bell, V., Materials for Architectural Design2 (2014) Laurence King
Bennett, j, Vibrant Matter: A Political Ecology of Things (2009) Duke University Press Books.
Blanc, A., Landscape Construction and Detailing (1996) McGraw-Hill Professional,
Blom, J., The Thoughtful Gardener (2017) Jacqui Small LLP
Boys, J., Doing disability differently: An alternative handbook on architecture, dis/ability and designing for everyday life (2014) Routledge
Design Workshop, Landscape Architecture Documentation Standards (2016) Wiley
Dover, J., Green Infrastructure: Incorporating Plants and Enhancing Biodiversity in Buildings and Urban Environments, (2015) Taylor and Francis
Dreiseitl, H. et al., New Waterscapes: Planning, Building and Designing with Water (2005) Birkauser
Dunnett, N., & Hitchmough, J., eds, The Dynamic Landscape (2008) Taylor & Francis
Guido, I., Incerti and Michaela, P., Manual of Recycled Landscapes (2013) Skira Editore
Hitchmough, J., Sowing Beauty (2008) Taylor & Francis
Filippi, O., Planting Design for Dry Gardens (2016) Filbert Press; Translation edition
Lowenhaupt Tsing, A., (2017) The mushroom at the end of the world. University Of Minnesota Press
Littlefield D., 4th Edition, Metric Handbook, Planning and Design Data (2012) Routledge
Margolis, L., Living Systems: Innovative Materials and Technologies for Landscape Architecture (2007), Birkhauser
McLeod, V., Detail in Contemporary Landscape Architecture (2008) Laurence King
Oudolf, P., and Kingsbury, N., Planting: A New Perspective (2013) Timber Press
Rainer, T., & Claudia, W., Planting in a Post-Wild World (2015) Timber Press
Various, TOPOS Issue No. 67: Materials & Details (2009) TOPOS Journal publication
Vernon, S., Garmory, N., Tennant, R., Landscape Architect's Pocket Book (2008) Architectural Press
Zimmermann, A., Constructing Landscape: Materials, Techniques, Structural Components (2008) Springer
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills (Characteristic 1) The course will help students to develop a foundational knowledge that integrates a fundamental area of the discipline including their features, boundaries, terminology and conventions. Students will develop a critical understanding of a range of specialised theories, concepts and principles of the discipline of Landscape Architecture. The course will raise a critical awareness of current issues in a given landscape architecture practice context.
(Characteristic 2) The course will encourage students to develop and apply knowledge, skills and understanding in the course encourages students to apply a range of standard and specialised techniques. Within the course students are expected to demonstrate originality and creativity in their detail design approach.
(Characteristic 3) Develop original and creative responses to problems and issues.
(Characteristic 4) The course will expect students to use a range of routine skills and a range of advanced and specialised skills appropriate to the discipline. Communicate, using appropriate methods, to a range of audiences with different levels of knowledge/expertise. Communicate with peers, more senior colleagues and specialists. Undertake critical evaluations of a wide range of numerical and graphical data.

Keywordsmaterials,design,planting,graphic conventions,Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh
Course organiserMr Miguel Domingues
Tel: (0131 6)51 5800
Course secretaryMs Amy O'Hehir
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