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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : Architecture - History

Undergraduate Course: Architectural History 1A: Introduction to World Architecture (ARHI08009)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 1 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course offers an introductory survey of architecture in a range of global contexts, from earliest times to the late eighteenth century. It explores how designers and their clients responded to a range of influences, considering developments in architectural style, typology, and engineering. A key aim of the course is to put architecture in context, showing what it can reveal of wider currents in social, political and cultural history. No previous knowledge of architecture or History of Art is necessary.
Course description The course begins with an examination of Ancient Egyptian, Greek, and Roman architecture, the architecture of the Middle Ages, Islam, Pre-Columbian America, and the first great re-evaluation of Antiquity in the Italian Renaissance.

It goes on to survey the Renaissance in Britain and Northern Europe and the subsequent influence of the Italian Baroque in these areas. Later, other significant cultural traditions in the history of architecture are introduced, such as those of India, China, and Japan. Semester 1 concludes with an examination of the theoretical, cultural, and stylistic aspects of the architecture of the European Enlightenment.

Throughout the course the development of building technology and the social, religious, and political understanding of buildings are recurring themes. Excursions into the related fields of landscape architecture and urban design necessarily appear from time to time.

The course is not just a history of building styles or building technology, although both of those areas are studied. It also shows what architecture can reveal about wider developments in social, political, cultural and urban history.

We welcome the perspectives that students from a range of disciplinary backgrounds can bring to the course. We understand architecture in its wider historical and cultural contexts. No previous knowledge of architecture or its terminology is expected.

The course is not a 'technical' one, nor does it involve design/drawing. It draws on introductory lectures (three hours per week), tutorial discussions (including site visits, 1 hour per week), and independent reading (9-10 hours per week).

The course is followed in semester 2 by Architectural History 1B, which continues the story until the end of the twentieth century, but either course may be taken as a standalone option.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  0
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 30, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 10, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 1, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 153 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 40 %, Coursework 60 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) This course has 3 assessment components.

1 Referencing and bibliography task 10%, due in weeks 5-7.

2 Essay (2000 words) 50%, due in weeks 8-10.

3 Examination (2 hours) 40%, during the examination period

Students must achieve a mark of at least 40% on aggregate in order to pass the course. There are no 'Force Fails' for this course.
Feedback Formative feedback
Tutorials will offer verbal feedback on skills necessary for success, particularly leading into the essay and exam. Tutorial times will be communicated via Learn.

Summative feedback
Written summative feedback will be provided on the essay and the bibliography/referencing task. A single mark will be provided for the exam. Feedback will be provided as per University regulations
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S1 (December)2:00
Resit Exam Diet (August)2:00
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the history and theory of architecture, design, and the related arts before c. 1800, in their artistic, social, political, and programmatic contexts and with an awareness of their consequences and implications.
  2. Locate and start to appraise critically historians' work on the history and theory of architecture and the related arts before c. 1800, in support of a reflective and informed approach to architectural history and design precedent.
  3. Demonstrate the development of communication skills relating to the key themes of the course.
Reading List
An extended course resource list is provided on LEARN.

The core course texts are:
Fazio, M. Moffett, M. and Wodehouse, L. (2019) A World History of Architecture. McGraw-Hill Education; 2nd edition.

Fraser, M. (2019) Sir Banister Fletcher's Global History of Architecture. (2 Vol Slipcase Edition) Bloomsbury Visual Arts; 21st revised edition.

Glendinning, M. and MacKechnie, A. (2004) Scottish Architecture. Thames and Hudson Ltd; Illustrated edition

James-Chakraborty, K. (2014) Architecture Since 1400. Univ of Minnesota Press; Illustrated edition

Watkin, D. (2015) A History of Western Architecture. Laurence King Publishing; 6th edition
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Research and enquiry: conduct research and enquiry into issues relevant to architectural history, synthesised into a coherent, evidenced written outcome.
Personal and intellectual autonomy: think independently and exercise personal judgment, to recognise and address ethical dilemmas, social responsibility and sustainability issues, with relevance to architectural history.
Personal effectiveness: have an ability to prioritise, plan and effectively use resources to achieve self-directed aims, while managing time effectively.
Communication: be able to communicate complex ideas and arguments to produce clear, structured work.
Additional Class Delivery Information A weekly tutorial.
Keywordsworld,architecture,architectural history,antiquity,renaissance,middle ages,islam,greek,roman,egypt
Course organiserDr James Hillson
Course secretaryMr David Currie
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