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Sustaining the studio: a snapshot of academics' perceptions towards studio in 2007

Wallis, LH, Williams, AP and Ostwald, MJ 2009 , 'Sustaining the studio: a snapshot of academics' perceptions towards studio in 2007', paper presented at the Sustainable Theory/ theorizing sustainability: Proceedings from the 5th International Conference of the Association of Architecture, 4-5 Sept. 2009, Victoria University of Wellington.

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‘The studio’ is considered fundamental and central to the education of architecture students and yet its meaning is expansive and ambiguous. References to ‘the studio’ date back to 1750s in France, at the Academie des Beaux-Arts and many elements of this studio are still prevalent today.
In 2007, architectural academics in Australasia were asked to define the ‘studio’ and to elucidate the variety of meanings. This paper will report the results of an on-line survey and a series of interviews and focus groups about academics’ perceptions of the studio. The paper identifies central themes on the basis of frequency and highlights the differences in practice. Space, interestingly, was linked to only half of the studio descriptions. This percentage increased to two-thirds when associations to teaching spaces and conceptual spaces (learning communities and virtual networks) are included. The other major link made to ‘studio’ and its meaning was the study area, ‘design studio’. This paper investigates why the associated meaning of studio has evolved and blended with design studio from the 1990s to 2007. Other themes to be discussed will include teaching approaches to increase student engagement, and the impact of students’ mobility and reduced contact hours leading to the studio being a day or an event. In conclusion the paper will identify how academics in Australasia are sustaining ‘studio’ according to current demands of the university environment.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Authors/Creators:Wallis, LH and Williams, AP and Ostwald, MJ
Keywords: Studio, design teaching, architectural education, academics’ perceptions
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© Copyright 2009 Association of Architecture Schools in Australasia

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