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Syllabus for

Academic year
ARK258 - Matter, space, structure 3
Materia, rum, struktur 3
Syllabus adopted 2019-02-04 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPARC
22,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Five, Four, Three, Fail
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Major subject: Architecture, Architecture and Engineering

Course selection in architecture has a separate process. Please contact Director of Studies Anna Knutsson if you have questions.
Teaching language: English
Application code: 05129
Open for exchange students: Yes
Maximum participants: 32

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    

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Morten Lund

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ARK255   Matter, space, structure 3A ARK256   Matter, space, structure 3 ARK257   Matter, space, structure 3


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

Minimum 40 credits from courses (the first year of the masterprogramme) with architectural design focus or corresponding qualifications.


Architecture is matter formed into space. The studio course aims to augment UNDERSTANDING and EVALUATION through the architectural design SYNTHESIS.
Emphasis is put on the iterative design process driven by physical representations such as model making and drawing, and informed by experiments in computational design.
Attention is focused on sustainability in its wider sense, including its ecological as well as social aspects.
Furthermore the design projects are rooted in Gothenburg in close dialogue with the community to give the studies a democratic perspective.
The architectural discourse is placed in an international context with a wide network of professionals and academics.

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

Refer to relevant knowledge of the topic 
Demonstrate a critical understanding of architectural history and theory in general.
Seek related material from academic research and architectural examples to inform the design process and frame the project, 
Use a variety of ways to document the context in drawing and model making, manually and digitally along with prolificness in conventional methods. 
Apply skills and abilities in design investigations where the informed drawings and models themselves become evocative arguments in the contemporary architectural conversation.
Apply individual approaches and sets of values in an explicit way, particularly the evaluation criteria associated with the design iterations. 


MATTER SPACE STRUCTURE is an architectural design studio. We celebrate architecture as the artistic expression of our material experience.
Chalmers is committed to sustainability. In the Matter Space studio we are determined to think cradle-to-cradle in all our courses. 
All Matter Space courses are project based design investigations. In the studio our projects pivot around people and stuff in the shape of architectural design proposals. 
An active studio is paramount. We demand ambition and presence of each student, yet provide an attentive and flexible environment supportive of individual desires and needs. 

ARK 257 is a preparatory course for the final thesis projects. The prep course is intended for fifth year students with a complete project portfolio. 
The prep course is an individual study conducted in the studio environment in close proximity with the thesis students. 
The course is an experimental and investigative architectural course. The intention is to give students a possibility to advance a vague idea to a definite thesis program prior to the thesis project begins.
The student begins the prep course with an outline of the themes to be investigated along with a time plan plus mock-up of the format of intended documentations.
A number of experimentations will be conducted and documented according to the plan leading to the final presentation of a thesis program.

After the course the student will be able to begin the thesis project with a clear intend and a strong confidence in the thesis program. 

Although the prep course is open in its methodology emphasis is put on setting a context. The context is realized in its wider sense from the spatial environment to social, cultural and historical frames of reference. 

The methodology offered in the prep course encourages material experiments, an iterative process challenging critically the limits of the traditional representations in architectural design, a personal reflection of the experiments and representations, and a rich documentation of the investigations accomplished during the course.

Experiments in representational techniques are encouraged in the prep course. Hence, the each design project in the prep course is a contribution to the academic and professional discourse. 

When putting forward arguments for the discourse in the project itself the student commands a rhetoric approach in the design with a clear set of values.


During the course the student will experience a teaching primarily based on weekly tutorials and monthly class critiques in various formats.

The tutorials are organized in small response groups. Each project will be tutored individually, however the teacher will address shared issues to the entire group. Between tutorials the students in the response groups will meet for interim critiques on their own. These interim critiques will be documented and available for the teacher.

The monthly class critiques and conducted with the examinator and the tutors and the entire class present. The intention of the critiques is to prepare the students for the examination and ensure a steady pace of the design process.

Along with these two core activities the students are invited to participate in the studio's activities such as lectures, seminars, excursions and workshops.


The course always contains theory seminar focusing on architectural theory and design precedents along with material and sustainable technologies. The relevant literature will be linked to the specific architectural design projects chosen and will therefore be announced prior to the beginning of each course.

Examination including compulsory elements

The learning outcome of the student will be examined at the final project critique as well as the review of the project portfolio in the very end of the course.

In the final critique the student will document their experiments and investigations in an approved format. The format of the documentation is open and usually very different from a traditional architectural design project.

A jury that includes the examinator, the tutors, and an invited external juror examines the student after the presentation. The examination begins with a question round followed by comments.

The documentation. During the closer scrutiny of the material and subsequent examination the student's knowledge and understanding is demonstrated along with the methodological approach and value based decisions.

The examination has the character of a conversation where the student responds with an open mind. During the dialogue the student ground the project in the academic/professional discourse using quotes from written texts as well examples from architectural design projects.

Page manager Published: Mon 28 Nov 2016.