GLA302 Analysis and Design of Contested Landscapes I
Showing course contents for the educational year 2022 - 2023 .
Course responsible: Maria Gabriella Trovato
ECTS credits: 15
Faculty: Faculty of Landscape and Society
Teaching language: EN
Limits of class size:
max. 25 students
Teaching exam periods:
Course frequency: Every year.
First time: Study year 2020-2021
Students enrolled in the Master Landscape Architecture for Global Sustainability programme.
Through the analysis of a specific case of an landscape in an international context and the elaboration of a design-research based approach, students will learn how to conceive a project proposal relative to a global context. The studio course is a problem-driven research-by-design course and embraces essential environmental and socio-cultural problems (issues). Topics, methods, and objectives are specified in the studio brief.
The course includes a field trip, to the selected site of study determined by the course responsible. During the field trip, students get an insight into the particularities of the specific case study and site, and how to carry out fieldwork (under consideration of research ethics). The specific landscape is explored, documented and mapped in the field and by other available sources, such as maps and written material. The analysis of all material and the design process are carried out within a studio framework. (desk-critique, discussions, reviews)
Within this framework, students actively explore different theories, concepts, and methods that are relevant for the development of the design project, and test their application and relevance in an iterative process. In this individual process of exploration students produce sketches, diagrams, plans, models or other visual means of representation during the course of the term.
The students are guided through the project by lectures, short presentations, assignments as well as continuous feedback to the developing work (structured teaching). Feedback is provided by the responsible staff, and in the form of peer reviews, in a mid-term and a final review.
The course aims at providing students with practical experience in how to - approach a case study within a global context, - conduct a design-research project by applying a problem-solving approach, - explore and utilize research and design methods in a specific case study.
Knowledge: - Students gain insight into the site- and case-specific geographical, ecological, economic and socio-political conditions, at the selected case study site.
Skills: - Students are able to apply theoretical, methodological and empirical knowledge to a specific design challenge. - Students are able to present insights from their ongoing and final work in a concise way by means of a coherent graphic representation and oral presentation.
General competences: - Students can gather information from first-hand and secondary sources in a respectful, ethical and transparent way. - Students can critically assess various kinds of information regarding their relevance and value to a project. - Students find ways to creatively analyse and synthesize information, insights, challenges and concerns to a project proposal.
Structured teaching: Lectures, short presentations, fieldwork (not comlusory), assignments, reviews, peer reviews.
Ongoing individual student work: weekly individual project development with prepared documents
Feedback and reviews. The studio format allows a frequent and intensive way of advising and supporting the learning progress of each student during the course of the semester.
The curriculum is specific to the site and problem of each term. Relevant materials will be available at the start of the course.
Bachelor degree within relevant disciplines.
Be prepared for a Masters level self-responsible way of learning. e.g. A critical and creative mindset / moving beyond individual academic comfort zone.
Embrace cultural diversity and difference / Openness to re-evaluate standards, definitions and paradigms and conventional wisdom.
Graphic skills to represent a site and a project in two-dimensional (ideally three-dimensional) ways.
Graphic and communicative skills to comprehend, reflect and synthesize complex concerns.
Based on weekly guidance in structured teaching students will conduct a project in self-study: students will self-responsibly drive an Iterative process between research and design explorations during the course of the semester.
Students will contribute to peer learning, showing mutual respect, tolerance and patience.
_demonstrate analytic and synthetic means to transfer knowledge in actionable interventions.
_test and deploy tools and methods of graphic representation.
A portfolio consisting of final comprehensive project outcome(s)
The comprehensive project will be presented graphically and with an oral presentation in the final review.
All submissions have to be submitted in ENGLISH ONLY.
25% structured teaching incl. consultations during studio class time.
75% self study in studio and in addition to studio time during the week
Admission to the Master of Landscape Architecture for Global Sustainability program.
Qualified external students may apply to enroll based on an individual case, if course capacity allows.
Reduction of credits:
Type of course:
25% structured teaching: consisting of lectures, short presentations, facilitated fieldwork, consultation of assignments, reviews. the remaining 75% are self-study: individual students or student group project development.
Fieldtrip is not a mandatory activity
The sensor - an expert in the respective studio topic - (aka. external examiner/critic) is determined and invited by the course responsible (aka. studio instructor).
Course responsible and external examiner jointly assess the final project outcome(s) and review the students’ work in the final review. Course responsible and external sensor will discuss and lay out the terms of assessment. Based on the oral and graphic presentation (aka. final review) course responsible and external examiner will elaborate and determine the grades for the work delivered and presented.
Examination details: Portfolio: Passed / Not Passed