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Arch Daily College Guide: The Latest Architecture and News

AD Architecture College Guide: Domus Academy

Courtesy of Domus Academy
Courtesy of Domus Academy

If there is one characteristic that defines “architecture” it is innovation. And if by innovative, you think responsive, then  Domus Academy certainly qualifies. It was started by Maria Grazia Mazzocchi, daughter of Domus Magazine founder, Gianni Mazzocchi after people kept writing letters asking her to start a design school. And in 1983, she did just that. 

For the basics, the school is very clear. Your accreditation comes from an affiliation with the University of Wales, in Cardiff, UK, which is awarded upon completing 180 Master’s level credits. And you also receive a Diploma Supplement from them which proves that you have a degree that is equivalent to major universities across the globe. And it’s sited in Milan, which if one is interested in Italian design, is an ideal locale. It’s a one year program, so it doesn’t require the extensive 2- and 3-year commitments that many programs across the world demand. It will cost a similar amount, however, at €23,790 Euro. But the best aspect of that admittedly large tuition fee is that it is for a single year—11 months to be exact. That means one can immediately begin searching for a job to pay off what is, after all is said and done, a relatively small student loan compared to average ones that are three times that size. There are also unrestricted scholarships available that defray costs from between 20%-50%. And in case you’re wondering, classes are taught in English. 

Continue reading after the break

AD Architecture College Guide: Pasadena Art Center College of Design

There’s a new program at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. Situated in the south campus designed by Kevin Daly of Daly/Genik , the Media Design Practices program is a newly minted program that is an exciting new approach to design.

Why you may ask has the ArchDaily College Guide decided to examine a media program when its focus is architecture schools around the world? Simple. Because this is an innovative program that will impart new skills, enhance the ones you have, and help you find a job to boot. All of this can happen regardless of your undergraduate degree.

Read our full review after the break

AD College Guide: University of Tennessee Knoxville

Architecture school ideally combines practical, intellectual, and theoretical skills which center on the production of physical projects. The key is to find programs that are able to provide a judicious cross-section of disciplines to develop one’s critical and practical abilities. That is done either within the design program itself, or by providing access to other colleges and school campuses.

AD College Guide: Centre for Architecture and Human Rights / King Mongkut’s University of Technology

Courtesy of CAHR
Courtesy of CAHR

Intervention in Human Rights has, until now, had very few models in the architecture profession. There are the non-profit organizations and NGO’s. They often focus on structures and spaces that have been decimated by natural disasters or military conflict. Then there is the Forensic Architecture approach which seeks to document exactly what people have undergone in those circumstances. Most architecture activists, however, fall into the first category, focusing on building or re-building.

While these models are very useful, they contain some inherent problems. One is that many of these organizations have predetermined agendas that dictate their intervention. Part of this is driven by the funding cycle: donors are not always inspired by the thought of funding a pig farm, but the idea of a new school designed by a famous architect makes an attractive selling point for new and continuing donors. Too often, however, that results in projects that are disconnected from the actual needs of local populations. Unneeded buildings are a waste of resources, time, money, and labor. 

Continue reading the school profile after the break

AD Architecture School Guide: Center for Architecture Science and Ecology (CASE) at Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute

Parametric Modeling/Parametric Design Studio (image via www.case.rpi.edu)
Parametric Modeling/Parametric Design Studio (image via www.case.rpi.edu)

What makes a good architecture school? Clearly there is no single factor that comprises a good, or even a great, architecture school. Different aspects are important to different people. Students often cite access to well-known faculty members—otherwise known as “starchitects”—as an important feature. Professors and instructors mention their school’s outreach programs, pioneering studios, technologically innovative labs, and exchange programs. All of these are valid and important.

Of course, these factors must be weighed against practical considerations that include tuition, the cost of housing, and other expenses. Why? Because in Western Europe and North America, tuition can be measured in the tens of thousands. What’s more, in the U.S., student loans aren’t forgivable which means your survivors can inherit up to US $90,000 worth of debt. And if the current economy has taught us one thing, it is that it’s cyclic.

So before investing all that money, it’s important to determine how a school will help you succeed. What are the practical and critical skills the school’s curriculum will impart to ensure a) your professional success, and b) your personal success (that means your overall quality of life). Because upon graduation, the goal is to gain skills to support yourself well while doing what you enjoy.

Read our CASE profile after the break