A reflection: Transformative aspects of teaching building science to architecture students

  • YEAR
    Karol, Elizabeth
    Mackintosh, Lara
    2010 Conference Papers


Building science is not generally the favourite area of interest to undergraduates studying architecture.
However it is an essential ingredient in assisting future architects to produce low energy buildings.
Successful teaching and learning involves the engagement of students in their own learning and
transformation. This paper discusses the links between transmissive learning, a standard approach in
the teaching of building science, and a transformative approach, which can have a fundamental impact
on the approach of architecture students to building science.

One way of encouraging the engagement of students in their transformation is to provide experiential
learning through such activities as site visits and hands-on assignments and experiments that
demonstrate the impact of building science on design. This paper focuses on a number of aspects of
one building science unit that teaches the basics of heat transfer in buildings. It examines how the
learning experience is related to transmissive and transformative teaching approaches. The paper
concludes that there are some missing threads in the learning experience which results in transmitted
knowledge not leading to higher levels of understanding


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