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Collaborative Teaching To Create Integrated Building Envelopes

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2009 Annual Conference & Exposition


Austin, Texas

Publication Date

June 14, 2009

Start Date

June 14, 2009

End Date

June 17, 2009



Conference Session

Instructional Innovations in AEC Education

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

14.338.1 - 14.338.9



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Paper Authors

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Kevin Dong California Polytechnic State University

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Collaborative Teaching to Create Integrated Building Envelopes

As a former practitioner the rewards for offering courses that expose students to the principles and issues surrounding design in a context that emulates real world situations is invaluable. Two years ago an idea developed into a course which includes students from three different disciplines; architecture, architectural engineering, and construction management, as well as, faculty from these same disciplines to create an all encompassing course on building envelope design. The idea was to expose students to multiple facets of design and to expose students to the ramifications of their designs by considering construction and sequencing issues.


The design and construction industry in the United States has started recognizing the value of collaborative efforts in producing buildings, thus the growing popularity of design build and integrated practice models. These delivery models emphasize the economic benefits of working collaboratively, but more importantly opening up the lines of communication during the work flow process - from design through construction and continuing through occupancy. In an academic setting, there are no economic forces driving disciplines or departments to unite in a more efficient and effective manner. But the rewards of teaching in a collaborative model can be professionally fulfilling and ultimately better prepare students for the future.

Recent papers, such as those in the American Institute of Architects “Report on Integrated Practice” (2006), suggest that a number of developments in the profession are overlapping, which “dissolve professional or disciplinary distinctions.”[1]. Daniel Friedman’s paper in this Report suggests three developments that will change the way that design is taught. These are:

1. A shift from static to dynamic form and the development of design pedagogies that use animation software; three dimensional scanners that can capture complex forms and the computer numeric control machinery that can replicate it. 2. The coming together of dynamic form with a broader application of sustainable technologies. The adaptation of technologies from other industries, such as aerospace or shipbuilding to create a new framework for collaborative practice as well as efficient design, manufacturing and assembly processes. 3. Using Building Information Modeling (BIM) to create a virtual model of the building that allows for the specification and performance testing of all the components of the building before it is built. BIM also increases the dynamic communication between the members project team allowing for fast and effective feedback from each discipline in the design development process.[1]

The idea of infusing a multi-disciplinary approach in the classroom is not new to academia, but using professors and students from multiple disciplines is unique. The key to the course was finding viable projects, identifying the appropriate learning outcomes, and most importantly finding professors who shared the same vision and approach to design - much like team building in the real world.

Dong, K. (2009, June), Collaborative Teaching To Create Integrated Building Envelopes Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--5505

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