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Syllabus for

Academic year
ARK641 - Masters thesis preparation course 2
Förberedelsekurs för examensarbete 2
Syllabus adopted 2019-02-04 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPARC
3,0 Credits
Grading: UG - Pass, 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: 05122
Open for exchange students: No
Only students with the course round in the programme plan

Module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0118 Written and oral assignments 3,0 c Grading: UG   1,0 c 2,0 c    

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ARK461   Academic writing: masters thesis preparation course ARK640   Masters thesis preparation course 2


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 30,0 credits from courses (in principal the first semester of the MPARC or MPDSD master's programme) with architectural design focus or corresponding qualifications. Master's thesis preparation course 1.


The course prepares the students for their master's thesis under the guidance of assigned examiner(s) and supervisor(s). It explores specific theories and/or design methods associated with a particular trajectory of architecture and urban design. It trains the students' ability to use design studies, precedent studies, context studies, material studies and/or theoretical texts as a basis for formulating a design problem and/or research query. After completion of the course, students should have put together a critically and methodologically informed master's thesis project plan that allows an examiner to assess the potential and feasibility of the project.

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

Knowledge and understanding

Define a particular trajectory of design and research in architecture and urban design.

Define the design media (i.e. specific types of drawings, models, diagrams, software, etc.) and writing style associated with a particular trajectory of design and research in architecture and urban design.

Discuss their own work in relation to a particular trajectory of design and research in architecture and urban design.

Abilities and skills

Plan and structure their own work during the course of the master's thesis.

Develop a critically and methodologically informed master's thesis project plan that fulfils academic standards.

Formulate a design problem and/or research query based on design studies, precedent studies, context studies, and / or theoretical texts.

Demonstrate the ability to move from the personal discourse of a design process to a more formal discourse appropriate for a master's thesis.

Ability of assessment and attitude

Understand and promote the importance of drawing from the work of others in order to innovate.


The course consists of an introductory lecture, text and/or precedent studies seminars, and individual feedback. The lecture gives an introduction to the field in which a given thesis direction operates and prepares students for planned learning activities such as seminars. Seminars aid students in mapping and critically reading precedents and/or source texts, and aid students in defining the context for their thesis. Interplay between design studies, precedent studies, context studies and the formulation of text is emphasised, and studies may precede text or the other way around. With the aid of these activities, and in dialogue with the examiner and supervisor, students develop a final draft of their project plan for the master's thesis. The project plan should contain a thesis title, an abstract, a bibliography and a schedule of the master's thesis semester. It should in addition contain design studies, precedent studies, context studies, material studies and/or arguments laid out in writing, as outlined in a course description.


Students are divided in groups based on assigned master's thesis examiner(s) and supervisor(s). Based on the course plan, each team of examiner(s) and supervisor(s) present their own course description and set of specific deliverables.

The brief and its context is introduced in an introductory presentation. Learning is structured around assignments and/or feedback provided in desk crit sessions. Students work individually or in pairs, depending on how they are planning on pursuing their thesis.


To be announced in a bibliography in each course brief.

Examination including compulsory elements

Student are required to participate actively in a minimum of 80% of all scheduled activities. The project plan is reviewed and graded after submission at the end of the semester.

Page manager Published: Mon 28 Nov 2016.