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Course - Big city buildings: London

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Comments about Course - Big city buildings: London - At the institution - London - Greater London

  • Course description
    What is the course about?

    This courses looks into a surprisingly overlooked part of architecture: how the purpose or function of a building influences its design. We will examine the cultural historical and design reasons behind the appearance of and developments in the architecture of a variety of building types found in London.

    What topics will we cover?

    After an initial two hour session on 'reading' architecture in and around City Lit, the course will investigate a series of building types associated with a large city like London, from the sky scraper to the garden suburb, and historical events, socio-economic and technical developments influencing changes in the design of these building types over time. The class-based sessions will be supplemented with visits to some of the buildings discussed.

    This course aims to provide students with an understanding of how the function or purpose of a building influences its design and how historical events, changes in ideas, needs or demands can influence the function of a building type and so its design. It also aims to give students knowledge and confidence to investigate architecture of all kinds independently.

    By the end of this course you should be able to:

    - Understand a variety of building types and the key cultural historical influencing their design
    - Read architectural plans, details and styles
    - Discuss and examine further the architecture of London and of other cities with more confidence

    What level is the course?

    This course is suitable for absolute beginners and for students with some architectural history knowledge.

    How will I be taught?

    Class-based sessions will combine a tutor presentation including handouts and images with a class discussion or activity. Visits will include a small lecture tour of the building by the tutor (where permitted) followed by a discussion among class members.

    Are there any other costs (e.g. certification, materials, equipment or books I need to buy)?

    Travel costs. Any visits outside of the classroom with either be within walking distance or within zones 1 and 2. Also, students might also like to buy books relevant to the course.

    What feedback will I get?

    You will receive regular feedback from your tutor throughout the course, as and when appropriate. At the end of the course you and your tutor are asked to assess the progress you have made.

    Will I have a chance to give my views on the course?


    Yes, please complete the evaluation form at the end of your course. These are monitored and help us to continually improve our courses.

    When I've finished, what course can I do next?

    Other visual arts courses about London, the architectural history courses in the spring and summer terms: 'Architecture for Health' and 'Architecture in Europe in 1900'.

    General information and advice on courses at City Lit is available from the Information and Advice Shop, open daily 11:00 - 19:00 Monday to Friday, 10:00 - 14:00 Saturday during term and 12.00 - 17.00 Monday to Friday during non-term.

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