Integrating the conceptual and practice worlds: A case study from Architecture

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Research and Development in Higher Education: Quality Conversations Vol. 25

July, 2002, 794 pages
Published by
Tony Herrington
0 908557 54 X

A compelling challenge for tertiary educators is to respond meaningfully to pressures to provide curricula that translate readily into real- world professional experience. To explore the synergies of an integration of the conceptual and practice worlds, this paper draws on a program, which the author evaluated, that was part of a Committee for University Teaching and Staff Development funded project for students of architecture and construction. The aspect discussed here, Composing Architecture—The Music Room, involved 74 second year students at Deakin University in semester 2, 2001. The case study is used as an illustration of curriculum design, including assessment, to explore how it met the aims of creating learning experiences that were purposeful, rich in their complexity, and mirrored the demands of the profession in a supportive environment that fostered development. One of the major aims was to model professional practice within the academy—in a sense, to enter into a dialogue between the academy and the profession—with the quality of that dialogue being determined by the accuracy or authenticity of the modelling. With this focus, having articulated and discussed the stated educational challenge that this project was intended to meet, the paper tests this against the attributes of authenticity in the environment of education as delineated by Martin-Kniep (2000) and, in so doing, questions some of her claims. Although some theorists (eg, Petraglia, 1998) contend that to prescribe what counts for authenticity is impossible, it is hoped that some insights into linking the academy and the profession will be gained.

Integrating the conceptual and practice worlds: A case study from Architecture

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Challis, D.