A Quest of Culture in Architectural Education Formulation of Problem

Yasira Naeem Pasha


Architectural education, like all other types of education, is essentially a two-way process. It follows the general educational methodology applied to all disciplines and social setups based upon three main elements; teacher, student, and content. Evolution of architectural education has been considered by scholars from mastery to discipline leading to a profession, stating the core as a skill to design. This discipline of education is composed of many diversified components in itself from arts to science, technique to philosophy and theory to practice. Imparting such wide range of knowledge areas to train architects involves not only the design skill but also the development of philosophical dispositions and values. This belongs to the holistic approach of defining architectural education by masters of architectural discipline.

Significant methodologies for training of architects to ascertain this holistic output involved apprenticeship and curriculum based models. Both of these include tangible parts as skill and technique, and in-tangible parts as cultural and philosophical values in educational process as most significant amongst many. The argument poses to describe that during the course of time; the intangible content of architectural education is oversimplified and guided by global professional values and terms. This oversimplification has created a gap in the integration process of social contexts and cultural values while educating the architects.

With the emerging debate related to cultural concerns in the past few decades, it is important to look into the core of issue; the way it is being approached in today’s time. This paper discusses the contemporary debate in architectural education related to culture. It also signifies the issue to investigate scientifically different dimensions of recent concerns about culture in architectural education and leads towards the formulation of the problem. It presents the summary of the views of selected eminent architects collected by qualitative approach through structured interviews. The methodology adopted also follows the review of scholarly presented literature and intends to seek the experiences, views, scholarship and futuristic visions in architectural academia prevailing in contemporary times, through focused interviews of eminent architects. It presents the conclusions as a need to sensitize the cultural context in architectural academia and also signifies the way forward for the exploration with regard to architectural education and its relation to culture.

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