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UniversityofKansas

SchoolofArchitecture,Design&Planning

ARCH701

RESEARCHMETHODSINARCHITECTURE
Spring 2012

Wednesdays,7:00pm9:50pm
Room:Lindley412

Instructor:KapilaD.Silva,PhD
Office:MarvinStudios132
OfficeHours:T3.00pm5.30pm
Email:kapilads@ku.edu

TeachingAssistant:JulieLawless
Office:SnowHall217
OfficeHours:TBA
Email:jumawila@ku.edu

3credits/G
ClassNumber58537

discussionsonavarietyofresearchtechniques
andtheprogressofyourresearchproject.

Initially, we will discuss why we need


research in design, what constitutes research
in architecture, whether research is different
fromdesign,andhowresearchcanbeapplied
in design. We will also explore the potential
for understanding design as a mode of
researchinquiry.

As a discipline, architecture draws from a


broadbaseofacademictraditions:thenatural
sciences, the social sciences, and the arts and
humanities. As a result, the sheer breadth of
knowledge that relates to architecture can
present a significant challenge for
architectural researchers and those who
would apply research in practice.
Unfortunately, the types and content of
inquiry that constitute the discipline of
architecture tend to reify themselves behind
conceptual firewalls/barriers that prevent a
robust and holistic discourse from emerging.
Thus we will discuss this range of latent
aspects in generating new knowledge in any
discipline, such as the range of assumptions
about the material and human reality that

CourseDescription&Objectives

This course introduces students to


architectural research as both a professional
and scholarly activity, which constitutes
systematic inquiry as a means of answering
questions related to the creation of the built
environment. It provides an overview of
theories and methods that seek to clarify the
relationshipbetweenpeopleandplacesanda
range of techniques on gathering, assessing,
interpreting, and comparatively evaluating
relevant information for such an inquiry.
These techniques include, among others,
historical,
archival,
ethnographical,
experimental, simulational, survey, mapping,
statistical,
and
qualitative
analysis
methods.The course also provides you an
understanding of the role of applied research
in determining function, form, and systems
and their impact on human conditions and
behavior.

ContentandStructure

Thecoursehasseveralcomponents:aresearch
project,lecturesanddiscussions,andawritten
research report. Class sessions will consist of

underliedifferentsystemsofinquiry,research
designandstrategy,andresearchquality.

The remainder of the course will


systematically consider a wide array of
specific research tactics data collection and
dataanalysismethodsthatcanbeutilizedin
generatingknowledgeindifferentdomainsof
architecture.

CourseAssessment

Assessment is based on semesterlong


research project and class participation. Your
performancewillprimarilybeassessedbythe
quality of your research project and the level
ofyourengagementinit,evaluatedinanon
goingbasis.

Research Project: This is the key assignment


of the class, which is designed to help you
understandhowtoconductaresearchproject
andtoadvanceyourthinkingaboutyourown
researchinterestsinahandsonmanner.The
project is especially designed to go handin
hand with your Comprehensive Studio. You
are given a research question to investigate,
derive design principles from the study, to
apply those principles into your own Studio
project,andtotestthevalidityofyourdesign
decisionsordesignhypotheses.

The research project should be undertaken in


groups. Each group should have four
members,
ideally
from
the
same
Comprehensive Studio. I expect a very high
qualityfinalproduct,andthefinalgradeswill
be equally distributed among the group
members. If you want to see different
weightingsbeassignedinordertoreflecteach
members level of contribution, each group
should discuss that with the instructor before
May10,2012.

The research project is conducted in several


stages, and there will be a series of
submissionsto take you on this path step by
step.Youwillbegivenspecificinstructionson
how to work on these assignments. Each
submissionwillbeassignedalettergradeand
the final grade will reflect the cumulative
effect of these. However, it is expected that
you will continue to improve these different
steps of the project, so that your effort is
clearlyreflectedinthefinalreport,whichwill
benoticedandrewarded.

CourseReadings

The readings provide general discussions of


various research tactics and published
examples of each. It is highly recommended
referring to the following text, available in the
Hatch Library Reserve, for research strategies
& tactics.

Linda Groat & David Wang (2002)


Architectural Research Methods. New York:
John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
You may also refer to the following texts,
availableatKULibraries,too.

Robert Sommer & Barbara Sommer (2002) A


Practical Guide to Behavioral Research: Tools
and Techniques. New York: The Oxford
UniversityPress.

HenrySanoff(1991)VisualResearchMethods
inDesign.NewYork:VanNostrandReinhold.

John W. Creswell (2003) Research Design:


Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Method
Approaches.2ndEdition.ThousandOaks,CA:
SagePublications.

JohnZeisel(1981)InquirybyDesign:Toolsfor
EnvironmentBehavior Research. Monterey,
CA:Brooks/ColePublishingCo.

Copies of other recommended readings on


specificresearchexamplesareavailableonthe
CourseBlackboard.

All submissions should be in a suitable


format (8.5 x 11 or 11 x 17 or other format)
hard copy version and are due at the
beginning of the class on the day of the
submission. Names of the Group members
and the submission title should be clearly
identified on the cover page. Include a list of
sourcesofreference,ifany.

Grading: The final grade will be determined


asfollows:

Assignment1
15%
Assignment2
15%
Assignment3
15%
Assignment4
15%
Assignment5
15%
Assignment6
15%
Assignment7
10%

Participation: This includes your enthusiastic


participation in class discussions and in the
assigned research task. Since this subject of
researchmethodsisanunfamiliarterritoryto
you, it is important to keep an ongoing
discussion with your instructors regarding
your understanding of the subject.
Consequently,agreaterdegreeofcoachingis
necessary. Thus, it is imperative to utilize the
inclass meetings and the instructors office
hourstothefullest.

Attendance: Attendance at all class meetings


is mandatory. Three absences without prior
approval will drop your final grade by one
gradepoint.

ScheduleofClasses&Submissions

January18

CourseIntroduction;
InterpretiveHistorical
Research

January25
GroupMeetings/Work

(Emailteammembersnames)

February01
EthnographicResearch/

ResearchEthics

(Assignment1due)

February08&15GroupMeetings/Work

February22 TypologicalResearch

(Assignment2due)

February29
GroupMeetings/Work

March07
SustainableDesignResearch

(Assignment3due)

March14
GroupMeetings/Work

March21
SPRINGRECESS

March28
DesignHypotheses&

EvidencebasedDesign

(Assignment4due)

April04
IndividualWork

April11
SimulationResearch

(Assignment5due)

April18
IndividualWork

April25
CourseReview

(Assignment6due)

May02
IndividualWork

May09
Assignment7

Research Report (Final) Due

(EmailaPDFversiontothe

instructorby9.00pm)


Youmayneedtolocatespecificprecedentsof
the place type for this investigation. Select at
least04precedentsthathavemadesignificant
impactonitsurbanandsocietalcontext.Read
architects own reflections and writings of
other architectural critics on how the
designers interpreted the societal and
contextualexpectationsofthoseplacetypes.

Student teams from the same studio may


decide either to divide the four specific
questionsamongthemselvestofocusonorto
investigate all four questions within each
team.

Recommended: Groat & Wang: Chapter 6


InterpretiveHistoricalResearch

ResearchTask2(dueFebruary22):
DefiningtheUserNeeds

Study the user/stakeholder objectives, needs,


andexpectationsoftheplacetypeandclearly
developanddefinetheprogramforthestudio
project. With the help of your Studio
Instructor, identify the different groups of
yourclientele,developalistofprogrammatic
aspects you want to discuss with the client
and user groups, and devise a questionnaire.
If possible, try to identify four different
groupsofusers,whomfourstudentteamsin
the same studio could interview separately.
Interviewand/orsurveytheclient/usergroups
andreportthefindings.Youalsocanobserve
the current behavior of a key user group in a
specificspaceoforwithintheplacetype,and
usethedatatounderstandhowusersinteract
with their setting or function within specific
spaces.

If you do not have direct access to the user


groups/client of your specific project, locate
and talk to users of a similar project. For
example,ifyourprojectisahypotheticalfilm
school project and thus does not have an

ResearchProject

Student teams (04 students from the same


studio in a team) will investigate the
followingresearchquestionsinrelationtothe
specificPlaceTypethatyouwillbedesigning
in the studio. The outcome of the research
study will become a part of your
Comprehensive Studio documentation. The
first four steps should be conducted as a
team and the last three steps should be
performed individually. Grades will be
assigned separately for team work and
individualwork,andyourfinalgradewillbe
determinedbyboth.

You are expected to consult your


Comprehensive Studio Instructor in
conducting these investigations. Studio
Instructors will be able to provide you with
appropriate case studies/precedents, reading
materials, and other useful sources and
contactsofinformation.

ResearchTask1(dueFebruary01):
InterpretingthePlaceType

Study the key sociocultural, political, and


urban contextual roles played by the
particular place type that you will be
designing over its course of history, with
particularattentiongiventothecontemporary
times.Thestudyshouldfocusonfourspecific
questions:(a)howhasthisplacetypeemerged
andevolvedrespondingtowhatsociocultural
andpoliticalissuesinthesociety;(b)howhas
this place type become a catalyst for growth
and/or change in its physical context and the
urban fabric; (c) how have architects who
worked on this place type interpreted its
societal and contextual role and expectations
in their designs; and (d) what are the key
expectations that this place type is supposed
to deliver in todays societal and physical
contextwithregardtoyourownprojectssite
andcommunity.

identifiable client, interview students and


facultyatKUfilmortheaterschool.

Youcouldusearangeofresearchtechniques,
including surveys, structured interviews,
focus group interviews, cognitive mapping,
etc., for this purpose. You may also conduct
moreorganizedobservationsusingtechniques
suchasactivitymapping.

Recommended: Groat & Wang: Chapter 7


Qualitative Research and Chapter 8
CorrelationalResearch

ResearchTask3(dueMarch07):
TypologicalAnalysis

Most place types have a generic typology in


which certain functions and spaces are
organized in a fairly similar manner across
different buildings of the same place type.
These are Core design attributes that remain
constant in any given design of the specific
place type. In the meantime, all other
functions and spaces change in response to
architects design preferences and other
contextual and programmatic requirements.
These Peripherals are what give architects
greater design freedom. Do you think the
placetypeyoudesigntoohavesuchageneric
typology, in which there are Core design
attributes that remain constant and other
Peripheral design attributes that change
depending on the context, program, and
designer preference? Are there single or
multiple typologies for the place type? What
factors have determined the emergence of
such typologies? If your place type does not
havespecifictypologies,whatarethereasons
forit?

Each team should select 04 precedents of the


place type designed within last 20 years.
Consult your own Studio Instructor to
determine the best precedents for this
purpose. Locate plans and sections of those
precedents. Develop abstract analytic

diagramsoftheplansandsections,identifying
the essential Plan Configuration, Sectional
Configuration, Primary Circulation Pattern,
Program
Distribution
Pattern,
and
Served/Service Spatial Pattern for each
precedent.Compareandcontrastthepatterns
of the precedents. Do you see any
commonalities in each pattern across the
selected precedents? Derive a common
abstract typology or typologies for the place
type based on these patterns. Identify the
Peripheral design attributes that do not play
anysignificantroleindeterminingthegeneric
place typology. Discuss what factors may
havedeterminedtheemergenceofthegeneric
typology/typologiesfortheplacetype.Include
theplans,sections,photos,andyourdiagrams
foreachprecedent.

ResearchTask4(March28):
SustainableDesignPrinciples

The Living Building Challenge and Biophilic


Design are two approaches that lead the
discussion of sustainable design today. You
will study these approaches indepth and
identify the ways how these approaches
would impact the design of your selected
placetype.Eachteamshouldpick04specific
principlesoutofthe20principlesincludedin
the Living Building Challenge and other
principles in Biophilic Design. Discuss how
the selected principles relate to your place
type and site conditions and what specific
design strategies, materials, and technologies
are available for achieving the desired
objectives.

Recommended:
Jason McLennan (2010). The Living Building
Challenge 2.0: A Visionary Path to a
Restorative Future. Seattle, WA: International
LivingBuildingInstitute.

Stephen Kellert, Judith Heerwagen, & Martin


Mador (2008). Biophilic Design: The Theory,

should be carried out individually. Mention


your design intentions/hypotheses behind the
design of the envelope system in yourdesign
project and how you expect it to perform.
Using suitable software programs, run a
simulation analysis of the climatic
responsiveness and/or energy performance of
your building envelop/skin system to test
whether it would perform as you intended.
Indicate your findings and what changes you
may make to the design to improve the
performance of the envelop system. Illustrate
yourreportwithrelevantgraphics.

Recommended:
Groat & Wang: Chapter 10 Simulation and
ModelingResearch.

ResearchTask7(dueMay09):
FinalResearchReport

Please submit a report containing all of the


above submissions. You may make necessary
revisions to the previous submissions before
including them in this Final Report. Please e
mail the PDF version to the instructor by
9.00pm.

Science, and Practice of Bringing Buildings to


Life.NY:JohnWiley&Sons,Inc.

AlisonG.Kwok&WalterGrondzik(2011)The
Green Studio Handbook: Environmental
Strategies for Schematic Design. London, UK:
TheArchitecturalPress.

ResearchTask5(dueApril11):
DesignHypothesesandEvidence

This particular step is specifically about your


own individual design project and, therefore,
shouldbecarriedoutindividually.Basedon
the findings of above research investigations
on the selected place type, derive a set of
principles that could guide your own
Comprehensive Design Project. You are
making a range of design decisions (design
hypotheses)assumingthatyourdesignwould
respond to a range of factors and that your
design would perform in certain ways, when
it is constructed and occupied. Write down
those design intentions/hypotheses and the
factors that guide them, illustrated with
relevant graphics (plans, sections, elevations,
perspectives, analytic diagrams). Articulate
how the design principles derived from the
previous research tasks (on the societal and
contextual role of the place type, user needs,
place typology, and sustainable design
principles) have informed those design
intentions. Select at the least 04 specific
major design decisions to reflect upon. If
your design is not informed by the design
principlesderivedfromthepreviousresearch
conducted, discuss why you did not rely on
those research and, in such an event, what
other research/evidence you have to support
yourdesignclaims.

ResearchTask6(dueApril25):
SimulationofBuildingEnvelope

This particular step is specifically about your


own individual design project and, therefore,
6

KU and SADP POLICIES

StudentswithDisabilities

The KU Office of Disability Resources (DR)


coordinates accommodations and services for
all eligible students with disabilities. If you
have a disability and wish to request
accommodations and have not contacted DR,
please do so as soon as possible. Their office
is located in 22 Strong Hall; their phone
numberis7858642620(V/TTY).Information
about their services can be found at
http://www.disability.ku.edu/. Please also
contact me privately in regard to your needs
inthiscourse.

AcademicMisconduct

Academic misconduct by a student shall


include, but not be limited to, disruption of
classes; threatening an instructor or fellow
student in an academic setting; giving or
receivingofunauthorizedaidonexaminations
or in the preparation of notebooks, themes,
reports or other assignments; knowingly
misrepresenting the source of any academic
work; unauthorized changing of grades;
unauthorized use of University approvals or
forging of signatures; falsification of research
results; plagiarizing of anothers work;
violationofregulationsorethicalcodesforthe
treatment of human and animal subjects; or
otherwise acting dishonestly in research.
When academic misconduct is alleged, the
clear university policies and procedures
expressedintheacademicmisconductsection
of the student handbook, available at
www.studenthandbook.ku.edu
will
be
followed. Look specifically at the section on
Codes,Policies,Laws,andGuidelines:
http://www.studenthandbook.ku.edu/codes.s
html#Academic%20Misconduct.

ReligiousHolidays

Any student in this course who plans to


observe a religious holiday which conflicts

with the course schedule or requirements


should contact me at the beginning of the
semester
to
discuss
alternate
accommodations.

Prerequisites

If any enrolled student has not completed all


the prerequisites for the course, they may be
administratively disenrolled unless they have
apreviouslyapprovedpetition.

Disclaimer

Thescheduleandrequirementsforthecourse
presented in this syllabus are subject to
change in the event of extenuating
circumstances.

LIST OF SOME USEFUL RESEARCH


JOURNALS

Journal of Architectural and Planning


Research

NA1.J68

Art&Architecture

Journal of the Society of Architectural


Historians
NA1.A327

Art&Architecture

JournalofArchitecturalEducation

NA1.J77

Art&Archi./Hatch

Environment&Behavior

HM206.E5

Watson

JournalofEnvironmentalPsychology
BF353.J68

Watson

DesignStudies

NA1.D47

Art&Architecture

Traditional Dwellings & Settlement Review


NA7117.5.T73

Art&Architecture

JournalofArchitecturalEngineering

TH1.J67

Art&Architecture

JournalofInteriorDesign

NK1700.J68
Art&Architecture

JournalofDesignHistory

NK1175.J68
Art&Architecture

Health Environments Research and Design


Journal Hatch

Environment&PlanningA:CityPlanning
HT166.E55
Watson

Environment & Planning B: Planning &


Design

NA2005.E58
Art&Architecture

Environment&PlanningD:Society&Space
H1.E58

Watson

HabitatInternational

GF101.H28
Anschutz

JournalofArchitecture

TH4.C48

Art&Architecture

JournalofPlanningLiterature

Z5942.J68
Art&Archi./Hatch

Journal of Environmental Planning and


Management
NA9000.P58
Art&Architecture

IndoorandBuiltEnvironment

TA170.I53

Engineering

AppliedAcoustics

TA365.A6

Engineering

Ergonomics

TA166.E7

Engineering

JournalofHousingResearch

HD1361.J66
Watson

Cities

HT119.C563
Watson

SageUrbanStudiesAbstracts

HT51.S24

Watson

InternationalDevelopmentPlanningReview
HT169.5T5
Watson

EnvironmentandUrbanization
HT243.D44E58 Watson

UrbanGeography

HT101.U74
Watson

JournalofUrbanAffairs

HT101.J65

Watson

UrbanStudies

HT103.U7

Watson

MaterialHistoryReview

F1021.N37a
Watson

PioneerAmerica

E161.p56

Watson

VisualAnthropology

GN347.V57
Watson

VisualAnthropologyReview

GN347.S86
Watson

WinterthurPortfolio

N9.W52

Art&Architecture

Space & Culture (International Journal of


SocialSpaces)

ElectronicResource

JournalofUrbanDesign

ElectronicResource

Worldviews: Environment, Culture, Religion

ElectronicResource

Architecture,CityandEnvironment

ElectronicResource

JournalofHousingandtheBuiltEnvironment

ElectronicResource

Environment,DevelopmentandSustainability

ElectronicResource

JournalofLight&VisualEnvironment

ElectronicResource

Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning

ElectronicResource

HousingStudies

ElectronicResource

IntelligentBuildings

ElectronicResource

Journal of the Community Development


Society

HN1.C63

Watson

CommunityDevelopment

302.3405C737
Anschutz

Transportation Research D: Transport &


Environment
TA1001.T725x
Engineering

UrbanAnthropology

HT101.U6723
Watson

UrbanHistory

HT101.U675
Watson

JournalofUrbanHistory

HT101.J68x
Watson

Landscape

GF1.L35

Anschutz

Landscape&UrbanPlanning

QH75.A1L35
Anschutz

LandscapeArchitecture

SB469.L3

Anschutz/Hatch

LandscapeDesign

SB469.I59

Anschutz

LandUsePolicy

KF5698.Z95.C68 LawLibrary

CulturalAnthropology

GN301.C85
Watson

JournalofCulturalGeography

GF1.J68

Watson

JournalofAmericanFolklore

GR1.J8

Watson

MaterialCulture

E161.P56

Watson