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Construction as Alchemy (ARCH10002)

Undergraduate level 1Points: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelUndergraduate Level 1
Subject codeARCH10002
Semester 1
Semester 2
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

This subject focuses on how design ideas are translated into built form through the process of construction. Students learn about the various professionals and trades that are involved, how construction information is communicated in contract documents, and about the structural principles and material properties that underpin the form and fabric of the built environment.

Through analysis, observation, experimentation, testing and review, students explore how designs become buildings. Site visits and model making and other exercises are used to engage students with structures (e.g. force and support systems), materials (e.g. metals, masonry, ceramics, polymers and timber) and construction case studies.

Physical and environmental properties of materials are presented together with their construction techniques and life cycle issues.

Costs to Students:

Students will be required to bring the drawing materials purchased for the prerequisite subject Foundations of Design - Representation. In addition an eight metre measuring tape, scale ruler and set of working drawings will be required along with printouts of assignments for submission; cost approx. $50-$100 per person.

Intended learning outcomes

Students who have successfully completed this subject should be able to:

  • Convey their understanding of construction processes, detailing and the roles of various professionals, suppliers and trades;
  • Understand basic structural principles and material properties that underpin the form and fabric of built environments;
  • Explore physical measures that quantify length, area, volume, mass, weight and scale and their application to representations of objects (e.g. in drawings and models);
  • Convey basic understanding of the range of building systems in terms of structure, materials, construction and function;
  • Identify basic properties and behaviour of materials, manufacturing processes and the environmental implications of their selection and use within the constructed environment.

Generic skills

Students completing this subject will have developed the following generic skills:

  • Ability to apply knowledge of basic science and engineering fundamentals;
  • Ability to undertake problem identification, formulation and solution;
  • Ability to learn from experiments and through reflection and analysis;
  • Effective communication with peers and the community at large;
  • Independent critical thought, rational inquiry and self-directed learning.

Last updated: 19 July 2019