DA7014 - Design Project 3: Analysis and Proposal

What will I learn on this module?

You will improve your skills and creativity in design; the ability critically to appraise, understand the nature of, and develop design briefs; to analyse and make an assessment of the complexities of the project’s context; and propose and justify a design strategy. You will learn to engage with critical reflection on the cultural and social context of your area of study. Through independent and supported inquiry you will develop the design proposal up to sketch scheme (equivalent of RIBA Workstage 2) in response to your exploration. This learning will be evidenced in a portfolio that demonstrates your theoretical position, programme context, brief development and the early stages of your design proposal.
This module will be supported by workshops and tutorials, and regular reviews, where you are expected to be critical engaged in the process.
Verbal, written and drawn feedback is provided formatively at tutorials and strategic reviews throughout the semester, to provide ongoing guidance and to establish opportunities for reflection and independent learning. Summative assessment will be provided at the end of the semester providing guidance to be taken into DP4.

How will I learn on this module?

You will work on studio based design projects within this module, which are taught through individual and group tutorials and supported by additional workshops, project focused seminars and site visits. You will demonstrate your independent learning skills to manage your thesis development and areas of personal inquiry and approach.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

You will be supported through weekly guidance during design tutorials and reviews, where you will discuss the development of your ideas and solutions to the set design projects. You will benefit from regular progress reviews as formative assessment on an individual and group basis, and are encouraged to participate in discussions about your work, your development and that of your peers. Feedback on formative and summative assignments will be offered in verbal, written and drawn format, which will provide advice for further development and a critical appraisal of your work and performance. Project material will be available on the eLearning Portal (ELP) so that you can access information when you need to and we operate an open door policy to help support student learning when it is needed most. The university library offers support for all students through its catalogue and an Ask4Help Online service.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:

KU 1. Demonstrate an advanced understanding and critical awareness of the ethical, professional and social responsibilities of a design professional within a multi-disciplinary environment, and the interrelationship between people, buildings and the local and broader context.

KU 2. Demonstrate the advanced application of related theories, arts, technologies, properties, processes and legislative controls, which recognises human well-being and conservation of the global environment for future generations

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:

IPSA 1. Demonstrate a high level of ability to understand the nature of, critically appraise, develop and propose complex briefs to ensure the design response is original, innovative and appropriate.

IPSA 2. Exhibit the skills of independent learning through research and scholarship to examine critically the subject area, evaluate alternative approaches, integrate sources of information, and use advanced techniques to propose change and solve complex problems.

IPSA 3. Evaluate, propose and use appropriate visual, verbal and written communication methods and appropriate media to represent the testing, analysis, critical appraisal and resolution of complex design problems.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):

PVA 1. Articulate an awareness of, and critical perspective on, contemporary influences on design, through study of related theoretical and cultural issues of architecture, the arts, urban design and related disciplines.

How will I be assessed?

Formative assessment will take place within regular tutorials and at interim reviews to provide ongoing developmental guidance and reflection.

Summative assessment will take place at the end of the semester. Written feedback will be provided to aid future learning and study.
Project based activities reflect authentic practice, and demand a portfolio output demonstrating communication skills and showing the development of critical evaluation, brief development, and creative application of design, technology and management knowledge.
Summative assessment will be moderated.
Moderation of summative assessment will take place in portfolio reviews at the end of the module.





Module abstract

Modules KA7011 Design Project 3 and KA7012 Design Project 4 form the Design Thesis: a thesis is an idea, argument or premise, which is justified, answered or proven. The Design Thesis resolves the thesis proposition through a practice research methodology.
Within this design project module, you will investigate authentic, practice-based project scenarios, which will provide you with an opportunity to demonstrate your ability to analyse, appraise and develop your own strategic brief, with reference to the social and cultural context of the site and to the position of architecture in society. You will agree the site and brief with your tutor and develop the design proposition to a sketch scheme stage. You will demonstrate skill and creativity in development of the brief and design proposals responding to the issues you identify.

Course info

Credits 40

Level of Study Postgraduate

Mode of Study 4 years part-time

Department Architecture and Built Environment

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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