M Arch 2

Course Leader:

Mhairi McVicar mcvicarm@cardiff.ac.uk

The second year of the Master of Architecture at WSA is organised around the Design Thesis, as a student-led and research-led design proposition. Within a framework of ten Design Units, each of which sets out its own architectural agenda, each student is encouraged to explore an independent stance, proclaiming and defending an architectural position. As well as the Design Thesis, a position is informed by a written Dissertation and studies in the Practice, Management and Economics of architecture.

The Design Thesis begins with a research ‘primer’ as an individual or group study. Locating design research within cultural, social, political, technological, tectonic, environmental, historical, economic, philosophical or other relevant aspects, students develop an individual focus within a specific site, program, and research question. From rethinking rural and urban infrastructure locally and globally, to formulating a response to the climate crisis, challenging definitions of value, investigating hand-made and digital means of design and production, and testing philosophical interpretations of historical and atmospheric contexts, the 2020-21 Units of the MArch2 demonstrate WSA’s ethos of grounded creativity and the collective pursuit of an ethical position towards architectural practice.


Unit XII Value

Unit XIII Liveable Urbanism

Unit XIV Dwelling Differently

Unit XV Local Adaptation

Unit XVI Craft

Unit XVII Rigorous Creativity

Unit XVIII Lost Properties

Unit XIX Sensing Structures

Unit XX Designing Histories