GAM.18 Beyond the Institution. Transforming the Learning Environment in Architectural Education

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Call for Papers
April 15, 2021 to May 25, 2021

Graz Architecture Magazine (GAM) publishes essays, interviews, illustrations, book reviews and projects related to the fields of architecture and urbanism. Published annually by the Faculty of Architecture of Graz University of Technology since 2004, it is conceived as an engaging interdisciplinary forum for scholars, architects and critics in which architectural developments and controversial phenomena are discussed. GAM is published bilingually (German and English) and is distributed by Jovis Verlag (Berlin).

Beyond the Institution

Transforming the Learning Environment in Architectural Education


What type of spaces are needed for education? Is a university building necessary for architectural education? Or could we, now that the pandemic has put us to the test, close the university faculties and trust completely in distance learning? Might our homes not make better universities? Or our cities and streets? The next issue of Graz Architecture Magazine (GAM.18) explores the interplay between the teaching of architecture and its learning environment, and it questions the extent to which the act of thinking about architecture still requires standard types of spaces.

GAM.18 examines the matter-of-fact acceptance of institutional conditions within research and architectural education, as it is well known that its methods and practices are subject to constant change. The twentieth century in particular was shaped by new approaches and unconventional strategies. During the last thirty years, many of these experimental approaches have been integrated into the curricula of architecture schools in Western Europe. Although the resulting teaching practices borrow from typologies deriving from diverse working environments, such as labs, (paperless) studios, or workshops, they are nevertheless mostly carried out in similar spatial settings and types of rooms that have remained unchanged for centuries. It is here that the basic structures of universities—today still characterized by hierarchical relationships differentiating between academic and non-academic staff and offering a point-based gradation of courses—find spatial expression. Only a few universities provide their architectural education program with its own faculty building. In many cases, even existing, more radical spatial concepts are converted back into conventional classrooms, in order to comply with the requirements of traditional courses and the related hierarchical structures. One of architecture’s hitherto unresolved questions is whether a building can ever be open enough to suffice as a space that meets the needs of widely varying spatial-design approaches and methods.

GAM.18 is interested in expressions of architecture education that critically integrate into their practice the spaces and institutions in which this teaching takes place. The actual form—be it more radical pedagogy like collaborative learning forms, peer-to-peer methods, outdoor learning such as design-build approaches, nomadic courses, or transdisciplinary types of work—takes a back seat to the question of how the transition from an understanding of teaching to an understanding of learning takes place in these spaces. Abstracts (max. 500 words) on the topic “Beyond the Institution,” along with a short biography, can be submitted to until May 25, 2021. The submission deadline for the final contributions is September 13, 2021.


Contact Info: 

GAM. Graz Architecture Magazine
Faculty of Architecture, Graz University of Technology
Rechbauerstraße 12
8010 Graz

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