Global Opportunities

APL3001 : Alternative Practice: Co-producing Space

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


Alternative Practice: Co-producing Space explores the role of the socially engaged spatial practitioner in community-led place making. Through a semester long enquiry, students will work on a live project and engage with a real community aiming to understand, through first-hand experience, how people relate to places (their experience, stories, narratives) and how places can enhance sociability, connectedness and the desire of appropriation through different activities. The module asks students to engage in a participatory approach (drawing from APL2035) through a temporary intervention conceived as means of testing and trying new urban experiences and narratives. The delivery of the intervention will provide a physical setting for probing the future: a form of enactment that intensifies and invests a space with new dynamics, allowing new socio-spatial interactions. Through the process, students will be required to develop a critical approach as reflective practitioners, and engage in a learning process that revolves around knowing and doing in a continuous process of reflection-in-action.

Module aims:

•       To facilitate a community project or intervention.
•       To apply theories, histories, case studies and approaches learnt through the alternative practice and related modules.
•       To situate the community project in relation to arguments for intervention in the built environment and an understanding of processes for change and the role of professionals and others in achieving it.
•       To demonstrate an understanding of the complexities of issues and problems pertaining to co- production in the built environment.

Outline Of Syllabus

••       Initial introductory and briefing lectures.
•       Group workshops/tutorials and student site visits to explore the characteristics and dynamics of the community or locality, and to determine the issues that the project or intervention will address.
•       Group workshops/tutorials to determine possible co-production strategy.
•       Co-production engagement with community groups or individuals in the community.
•       Presentation of Strategy including the design, planning, detailing and/or making of a live intervention for community engagement.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion1100:00100:00Preparation of the live project and portfolio preparation.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture41:004:00Lectures - module presentation and project briefings. PIP
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching82:0016:00Group Tutorials. PIP
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops32:006:00Project reviews. PIP
Guided Independent StudyProject work162:0062:00Independent research and design work.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork14:004:00Site visits. PIP activities.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesModule talk81:008:00Week-by-week overview and Q&A sessions. PIP
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Initial lecture introduces the module and will be followed-up with briefings at key stages in the project. On-line group tutorials and reviews allow students to gain from staff expertise and provide opportunities to discuss their particular co-production strategy. The fieldwork and private study enable students to gain an in-depth understanding of the site (through field visits) and community/stakeholders, and to follow up evidence in relation to it. It also provides time for students to reflect on key theoretical issues related to community engagement. Students will also need to organise their time/plan future actions, meet to discuss their various activities, and draw together their strategy and presentation (Group-learning).

Should the public health situation not allow for present in person teaching, the briefing sessions will be delivered in an online synchronous mode with weekly live module talks and drop-ins. Group tutorials and project reviews will move to synchronous online delivery with the support of online design platform Miro. Fieldwork will follow public health restrictions and engagement with communities will take place remotely.

Contact hours rationale: 38 contact hours. Students work on a live project and engage with a real community, this mode of delivery of design studio requires a higher level of student support.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Portfolio2A80Group portfolio inc. the design of a spatial intervention and report of the community engagement.
Reflective log2A20Individual Reflective Review
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The co-production project addresses a real issue in a real community - usually in the North-East - and is conducted in conjunction with a community group.
Students work in groups and their work includes the design, planning, detailing and/or making of a live intervention for community engagement. This tests the students' ability to understand a community and evaluate the issues at work, as well as articulate a co-produced spatial intervention (through a range of different media including visuals, models, engagement probes or prototypes), and to reflect individually on the achievements/challenges/limitations of their engagement and/or intervention project.

Reading Lists