Bartosh, A., Krietemeyer, B., Mac Namara, S. “Student Pre-Perceptions of Integrated Design and the Role of Technical Courses in the Architectural Studio.” Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) (New Orleans, LA) (2016)
Among those who teach technology to architecture students there is the perception that many students (and indeed the occasional studio critic) view the “support courses” of structures and building technology as ancillary at best and as an obstacle at worst. We, the authors, worry however, that those students who fail to engage with this material are not prepared for the real world of design and as there is a danger that as practicing architects they will to often cede control of their designs to engineers, contractors, and outside consultants. The authors set out to study student pre-perceptions ahead of Integrated Design Studio, a studio course required by most NAAB accredited programs that is typically regarded as the most significant opportunity for students to display mastery of technical issues through the vehicle of design. We constructed a study to evaluate students’ pre-perceptions of the importance of their required technical courses, the role of those technical courses in their development as designers, their confidence in their ability to apply classroom knowledge in the studio context, and their enthusiasm for doing so. This paper presents the results of that study and a set of goals and assessment metrics that will be applied and tested in the subsequent Integrated Design Studio course aimed at improving student capacity to deploy technical knowledge in their design work.