Designing Education was the 7th International Conference of the Association of Architecture Schools of Australasia
Convened by Vivian Mitsogianni (RMIT University), Diego Ramirez (Monash University) and Peter Raisbeck (University of Melbourne)
3-5 October 2013, Melbourne, Australia
The conference was structured around three broad themes: Provocative Studio Pedagogies, Studio Nexus Design <> Research, and The Future of Practice.
The design studio remains the central pillar of architectural education and the forum for synthesizing diverse forms of knowledge. It serves as the primary vehicle for developing both core skills and critical thinking for shaping the built environment. Maintaining the vestiges of the professional master apprentice model, the design studio continues to be a device for disciplining and for acculturating. However, despite radical transformations over the past few centuries, the cultures of the Beaux-Arts and Bauhaus still pervade implementation of design studios. There are some emerging variations – live studios, research studios, travel studios, interdisciplinary studios, etc. – and broadening approaches, but there is generally limited diversity in studio delivery across institutions. Does the current supply of design studios adequately meet the challenging demands of contemporary conditions? This conference will bring together academics and practitioners to speculate on the future of the design studio as a pivotal platform for architectural education and production, and to consider modifications required in response to the changing demands of society, pedagogy, research and practice.
The Architects Accreditation Council of Australia recognises the basic education of an architect as a combination of academic training and professional training. Despite tensions between these training regimes, examining and speculating on future design studio practice requires input from diverse academic and professional perspectives in order to broadly consider the continuum from design studio pedagogies to office studio practices. Moreover, diverse input will also contribute to projecting design studio possibilities to prepare future practitioners to negotiate and shape our increasingly complex built environments.