Skip to main content


ARC8084 : Architectural Practice

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Professor Prue Chiles
  • Owning School: Architecture, Planning & Landscape
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
European Credit Transfer System


Approaching Architectural Practice: “Between the How, Who and What of “expert” Knowledge.

To develop a critical awareness and understanding of:

•       An architect’s responsibilities to society and the environment in this time of climate emergency and environmental change.
•       The social, cultural, ethical, economic, legal and regulatory framework within which architecture and construction take place.
•       The role of an architect, in the past, today and in the future
•       The role of women in architecture.
•       The changing models and modes of practice, new evolving ways of practicing and the role of the architect as a professional in a rapidly changing world.
•       The organisations and procedures involved in developing design concepts into architectural outputs.
•       The transdisciplinary nature of the architectural discipline.
•       The Stages of the RIBA Plan of Work (2020)
This module supports and encourages students to reflect on the diverse knowledge and skills gained over the course of their education concerning their own personal and architectural learning and development, in relation to a future in the profession and practice of Architecture.

To understand and develop a critical position in relation to the relevance of ideas and of research in a School of Archotecture and how these may translate into Practice.

To developing both an understanding and questioning of ARB RIBA criteria at Part 2.
To develop effective communication and collaborative skills for practice.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module explores the topics in the ARB and RIBA syllabus for Management Practice and Law
Professionalism in a wider context of:

•       Clients, users and the services provided by architects
•       Legal framework and processes
•       Practice and management, project and building procurement
•       A series of topics that help the student reflect on wider architectural practice, their education and their own position in relation to the architectural profession.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials120:204:00On-campus PIP delivery. Some blended learning possibilities for online delivery - visiting lecturers
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion230:0060:00Average time for assessment preparation
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading130:0030:00To support learning and assessment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops83:0024:00On-campus PIP delivery. Some blended learning possibilities
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity124:0024:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyStudent-led group activity120:0020:00Group work - in person on campus.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery41:004:00On-campus PIP delivery. Some blended learning possibilities
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study130:0030:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesModule talk41:004:00On-campus PIP delivery. Some blended learning possibilities for online delivery - visiting lecturers
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Teaching methods include structured guided learning (lecture materials), scheduled learning and teaching activities (module talk, workshops, and drop-in surgeries) and various guided independent study activities. The lecture materials will foreground the key concepts underpinning the learning outcomes and will be structured to allow the scaffolding of ideas to facilitate learning.

Most of the scheduled learning activities (workshops) will be delivered in ‘block-teaching’ mode during the first two weeks of the Semester and these will facilitate an in-depth exploration and application of the concepts introduced in the lecture materials. Thereafter, synchronous interaction will be through weekly at least four (x 1hr) drop-in mentoring sessions which will be held either individually or in small groups. These drop-in sessions will consolidate the learning of students and integrate this with design and other activities during the semester, as well as provide further tuition and support in the preparation of their assessments.

Assessment Methods

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

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Oral Presentation202M20Group presentation on an aspect of professional architectural practice
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Report2M402,000 - word architectural practice essay
Reflective log2M401500-word reflective essay - compiled into a short portfolio with relevant images, photographs and drawings (max length 25 pages)
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The group presentations will allow students to practice communication group working skills and explore an aspect of practical professional practice and role playing (e.g. talking to and working with clients, communities and other disciplines, bidding for work, setting up of an architectural practice and resolving conflicts) that will help them apply knowledge to real-life practical situations.

The 2,000-word architectural practice essay (in the form of a case study on a particular project or otherwise), will allow students to demonstrate their knowledge of architectural and professional practice in relation to their design thesis (or other appropriate project or process). This will facilitate a better integration of theory and practice,
research and design, conceptual and realizable ideas, and the importance of a professional practice understanding and finding a way to discuss work within the design studio critically to a wider lay audience.

The 1500-word reflective essay will provide a vehicle for students to critically reflect on architectural practice and their personal evolving position in relation to the profession of architecture, on their personal and professional journey to becoming an architect. This essay will be compiled with relevant visual examples in an “academic portfolio”

Reading Lists