Architecture design studios are usually taught using Action Learning. Students are presented with a client brief and a site, and the end product is normally the design for a building with architectural drawings and models being the primary outputs. Students are assessed against five or six broad criteria that make up the context for architectural design. There is often a lot of room for subjective assessment on the part of teaching staff that can be frustrating for staff and students alike. For staff, because students don’t always seem to grasp what is being asked of them, and for students because what is being asked of them is vague. The challenge in this case was to clearly identify the relevant knowledge domains within the 27 performance criteria from the the ‘National Standard of Competency for Architects’ relevant to design studio, and to clearly evidence student competency in terms of skills and knowledge. A PebblePad workbook was prepared that contained, amongst other things, 27 worksheets to cover each of the 27 competencies. The most significant impact of using PebblePad was that we were able to clearly provide evidence that all of the required competencies were being taught and assessed at appropriate levels. The Architecture Program at Griffith received a full 5-years accreditation.
The above case study is just one of twenty-five brilliant examples from our 2020 'Charting new courses in learning and teaching' conference. With case studies spanning degree apprenticeships, clinical assessment, interprofessional education, showcase portfolios, and many other contexts and disciplines, they are real stories of trailblazing innovation. If you'd like to download all 25 exemplars of pedagogical goodness, click the link below.