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Syllabus for

Academic year
ARK466 - Sustainable architectural design  
Arkitektur och hållbar gestaltning
Syllabus adopted 2017-02-20 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPDSD
22,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Five, Four, Three, Fail
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Major subject: Architecture

Course selection in architecture has a separate process. Please contact Director of Studies Anna Knutsson if you have questions.
Teaching language: English
Open for exchange students: Yes
Maximum participants: 20

Course module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0117 Project 9,5 c Grading: TH   9,5 c    
0217 Project 13,0 c Grading: TH   13,0 c    

In programs



Magnus Persson


ARK186   Sustainable building 1 ARK191   Sustainable building 2 ARK242   Sustainable building 3 ARK243   Sustainable building ARK465   Sustainable architectural design

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In order to be eligible for a second cycle course the applicant needs to fulfil the general and specific entry requirements of the programme that owns the course. (If the second cycle course is owned by a first cycle programme, second cycle entry requirements apply.)
Exemption from the eligibility requirement: Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling these requirements.

Course specific prerequisites

Qualification for the masters programme or Bachelor degree or similar in Architecture, Architecture and Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Interior Architecture


The students in the studio are induced to develop the knowledge, skills and tools to be able to design, plan and construct, evaluate and advise on, the creation of low-carbon, sustainable buildings as well as evaluate the environmental impacts of their decisions.
The studio is specifically designed to meet the need for buildings to be judged by their actual performance as much as by their appearance, and to demonstrate sustainability in terms of:
- their global impacts with regard to climate changing emissions and use of finished resources
- their impacts on local levels of pollution and waste
- their ability to positively contribute towards sustainable development and human well-being

The overall aim is to promote an interdisciplinary and strategic integrated approach to design that will enable future professionals to integrate their skills and cooperate in achieving genuinely excellent environmental performance in buildings.

Learning outcomes (after completion of the course the student should be able to)

Skills and ability
At the end of the studio the student shall demonstrate the ability to: 
- collaborate in a design process, defining a specific professional contribution in a project group
- visualize and communicate the performance of a building concerning energy efficiency, environmental impacts and indoor climate
- combine design with investigation
At the end of the studio the student shall demonstrate skills in:
- describing and analyzing the main features of sustainable buildings
- visualizing technical problems and technical solutions
- using a diverse range of tools and strategies in order to promote the design of integrated systems for healthy indoor climate and resource efficiency on a larger scale.
Knowledge and Understanding
On completion of the studio the student shall demonstrate:
- understanding of the different implications of design for sustainable architecture
- broad understanding of various and diverse approaches to resource efficiency
- insight into particular disciplinary frameworks commonly used in sustainable design projects.


The concept of sustainable building is introduced, both as principles and as chosen elements in design assignments. The students are trained to carry out design for sustainable architecture, integrating environmental, functional, technical and aesthetical qualities in a project.
Passive- and active house design strategies are presented related to different definitions of sustainable building. Three main approaches give structure to the design work: 
1. Climate and Buildings 
2. Passive and Active building design strategies
3. Details, performance and architecture

The design assignment consists of delivering a complete design documentation in which architects cooperate in groups. The tasks are defined in a program delivered in connection with the course start. The visual presentation of technical problems and technical solutions is central in all deliveries as a mean to communicate the issues of sustainable building between professional groups and to a larger public.


The studio runs full-time and is project- and design oriented. Staff-led lectures define the framework, background and knowledge base. Analysis, synthesis and application of the material introduced in the lectures are achieved through professional- and staff-led workshops, group and one-to-one tutorials, student-led seminars, case studies and practical design work in the project. 
For further information about admission and registration, please contact the Student Centre.


Literature will be discussed and the assignments will be distributed in connection with the course start 

Examination including compulsory elements

In order to obtain a pass in this studio the student is expected to attend the compulsory modules. Final grading will be given to the teams. Further, the following requirements must be fulfilled: a) Deliveries of design tasks that pass each assessment from teachers and guest critics; b) Delivery of the final rapport; and finally c) Active participation in presentations and exhibitions. 

Page manager Published: Mon 28 Nov 2016.