052-0634-20L  Force, Material, Form: Exploring Interdisciplinary Design

SemesterSpring Semester 2020
LecturersJ. Schwartz
Periodicityyearly recurring course
Language of instructionGerman

AbstractThis course is aimed at students of architecture and civil engineering who wish to practice and explore the design of structures in interdisciplinary groups. In the interplay between application and theory, the students design small structural objects in interdisciplinary teams and then investigate group dynamics relevant to design.
ObjectiveStudents learn to work in an interdisciplinary group of architecture and civil engineering students on the basis of the design of small structural objects. Through observation, reflection and theoretical examination, characteristic group dynamics are to be identified and possible behavioural effects are to be investigated. The following questions are central: How can interdisciplinary groups develop high-quality innovative structures? What are the decisive processes in such cooperation? How are interdisciplinary ideas developed and decisions made? Which roles are occupied by whom and how does this distribution of roles affect the structural design?
ContentStructural design is connected with the interdisciplinary negotiation of technical-constructive framework conditions on the basis of creative-spatial ideas. This field of tension between strength, material and form requires a fruitful exchange between architects and civil engineers. The course prepares students for this interdisciplinary working environment by practising and analysing the ability to work creatively with people from different disciplines. Within the framework of the design of small structural objects, tools for observation, reflection and theoretical examination are imparted, with which students can explore design-relevant group dynamics as well as behaviour and thought patterns in interdisciplinary work processes. Three thematic areas will be focussed on: The process of designing, working out approaches to solutions and understanding the roles of the individual group members. Each of these topics is dealt with in three stages:
1. an introduction to the theoretical foundations of the respective topic through input from the lecturers, guest lectures from experts and/or an excursion.
2. design of small structural objects in interdisciplinary groups with self-observation or external observation of the group dynamics relevant to the design.
3. analysis and presentation of the findings from the group observation.
The methodology of the course aims to combine theory and practice in an instructive, practical and entertaining way. The personal experiences and interests of the students in exploring the interdisciplinary design and construction of structural objects are the focus of this course.
LiteratureLiterature with text extracts from specialist books relevant to the topics of the lecture will be presented and made available during the course.
Prerequisites / NoticeThe final individual grade is made up of 50% of the evaluation of each of two components. Component 1 is a group work (presentation during the semester), component 2 is an individual work (paper, can also be submitted after the end of the lecture period). A regular and active participation in the lessons is assumed (maximum 2 absences). A repetition is only possible if the course unit is enrolled again.