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Course overview

If you are interested in studying architecture and have a skill and interest in environmental design, this course provides an education in architecture with specialisation in the design of environmental systems for buildings. 

The course is recognised by the Architects Registration Board (ARB) and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) for exemption from the Part One professional examination, and by the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) as a route to Chartered Engineer status.

If you want to become an architect, the MEng course is followed by one year's supervised professional experience before embarking on the two-year MArch Architecture (ARB/RIBA Part II and one further year's professional experience culminating in a Part Three exam.

Why choose this course?


Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2021 entry.

UK entry requirements
A level offer AAA
Required subjects

English, maths and physics or double science at GCSE. At least one of A level maths or physics is essential. Preferably students would have also taken chemistry, art, or design and technology (a portfolio will be required).

For A level subjects containing a practical examination, a pass in this element is also preferred.

IB score 36 including one of Higher Level maths, Higher Level physics or Standard Level maths is essential We also accept the following IB Mathematics courses: Mathematics: Analysis and Approaches = 5 at Higher Level or 6 at Standard Level. Mathematics: Applications and Interpretation = 5 at Higher Level only.

Foundation progression options

A foundation year is available for those with BBB grades but not in the required subjects.

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

Teaching methods

  • Group study
  • Independent study
  • Lab sessions
  • Lectures
  • Supervision
  • Practical classes
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops

How you will be assessed

Assessment methods

  • Coursework
  • Dissertation
  • Examinations
  • Group coursework
  • Practical write-ups
  • Presentation
  • Research project

Contact time and study hours

All students will receive two days per week of studio tuition supported by lectures in architectural humanities and sciences. Typical contact time is circa 30 hours per week.

Study abroad

Explore the world, experience different cultures and gain valuable life skills by studying abroad.As well as starting an international network of contacts, you will discover new strengths and abilities – helping to enhance your future employment prospects. See our study abroad pages for full information.

Modules

This year is structured around a core studio module that develops key design skills and techniques. Supporting modules cover fundamental ideas and concepts relating to environmental design, construction, structural design, and architectural theory. The year also introduces mathematical tools that support the design of environmentally responsible building systems.

Architectural Design Studio 1A

This studio-based module introduces you to basic design, drafting, model making and drawing skills. There are two dedicated days of studio tutorials per week. The semester finishes with the design of a small building that will test your understanding and application of the knowledge gained on this module.

Integrated Design in Architecture

This module introduces you to the principle of a holistic and integrated approach to building design. Firstly, you’ll learn about the notion of thinking architecture, the fundamental principles of design and drawing skills and typologies as key areas of study. Then you’ll focus on methodology and approaches relevant to the studio comprehensive design project with a more intensified examination of topics such as light, narrative and sustainability. For this module you’ll have one 1-hour lecture per week.

Tectonics 1

This module introduces you to the technology, materials and techniques used in constructing buildings and the importance of considering it as an integral part of the design process. Through two hour weekly lectures you’ll conduct practical structural modelling exercises and develop a basic understanding of the qualitative behaviour of structures and the interaction between structural form and the loads that they have to carry.

Architectural Humanities 1: History of Architecture

This module offers you an introduction to the history of architecture from ancient times to the present day. A two-hour weekly lecture aims to familiarise you with major architectural typologies and the social and technological changes that brought them into being.

Engineering Mathematics 1

This module introduces you to the algebra of complex numbers providing a key mathematical tool for analysis of linear mathematical and engineering problems. You will have one 3-hour lecture and workshops each week where you will study the complexity of solving general systems of equations using matrix techniques and review the calculus of a single variable.

Architectural Design Studio 1B

This studio-based module develops your basic design, drafting, model making and drawing skills. Through the two dedicated days of studio tutorials per week, you will be introduced to historical precedents and computer-aided drawing programmes. These exercises will feed into a small comprehensive design project of a public building.

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules may change or be updated over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for the latest information on available modules.

You will study modules that explore the concepts behind the active and passive systems used to provide healthy, comfortable conditions for building occupants. The design studio serves as a forum to explore the application of these ideas and material covered in structures, construction and architectural history.

Integrated Design in Architecture 2A

Following on from the key principles introduced in the year one module, Integrated Design in Architecture, you’ll further develop your communication and research skills which will underpin your work in both the theorisation and practise of architecture. Through one-hour weekly lectures you’ll explore the research methodologies and skills needed to identify and synthesise relevant and accurate information as well visual communication skills focusing on CAD programs, where skills will be developed through workshops and self-directed exercises.

Tectonics 2A (Structures and Construction)

Dealing with small to medium-scale buildings, you’ll build on knowledge acquired in Tectonics 1, focusing on structural systems, building elements, material, components, connections, construction methods and detailing. During a two-hour lecture each week, you’ll learn how constituent parts come together to construct building entities through investigation and analysis of structural principles, detail, material composition and performance of primary building elements.

Fluid Mechanics and the Built Environment 1

Building on Level 1 design modules, you’ll be introduced to engineering concepts that inform and enrich the environmental performance of buildings. You’ll cover the fundamentals of fluid mechanics (fluid properties, hydrostatics, fluid dynamics) and then explore some of these through the analysis of flow through piped water systems and the design of hot and cold water services. You’ll spend around three to four hours in lectures and workshops studying for this module.

Environmental Services Design 1

This module gives you an introduction to the environmental services systems common to many simple buildings. Developing awareness of the systems, through eight hours per week of practical workshops and lectures, you’ll be introduced to the techniques used to select and size systems, explores issues associated with the integration of these systems and be given an opportunity to practise the fundamental skills used by system installers.

Architectural Humanities 2 (Theory and Criticism)

This course provides a historical, cultural and philosophical context to the major contemporary debates in architecture today. You’ll gain understanding of architecture's potential as a practically useful and culturally meaningful activity. Key issues from the history of philosophy will be examined alongside a range of building case-studies. This will enable you to develop a series of alternative interpretive frameworks through which buildings may be analysed, criticised, debated and understood. For this module you’ll have a two-hour lecture each week.

Design Studio 2

This module focuses on developing your practical architectural design skills and exploring the relevance of related subjects, such as structure and construction. The emphasis is given to the ‘craftsmanship of architecture’, improving the spatial, aesthetic and sensual, as well as practical, structural and dimensional qualities of your design. You’ll learn how to translate an abstract idea into a form with a positive physical presence. The units are organised into five thematic blocks:

  • Urban Settings
  • Making Processes
  • Context
  • Poetic Narratives
  • Sustainable Communities

Phase 1 addresses site and context and is intended as a short and flexible project, introducing you to the unit theme, approach and work process. Phase 2 is a key design project with the generic brief “Learning to Dwell”. You will be tasked with designing places for activities rather than rooms; places for eating, sleeping, talking, cooking, thinking and washing. For this module you’ll have two six-hour practical workshops per week.

Electricity and the Built Environment

You will be given an understanding of the role that electricity plays in controlling the environment within buildings and the wider built environment through two hours of lectures each week.

Simulation and Design

Computer laboratory sessions are used to introduce the tools and acquire basic competence in their use. Their use in project work provides an opportunity for you to develop an enhanced ability to apply these tools to understanding environmental strategies in existing buildings and to confirm strategies in new designs. You’ll spend around two hours a week in computer classes studying for this module.

Thermodynamics and Heat Transfer 1

This module introduces the principles of thermodynamics and the thermodynamics concepts relevant to applications in building environment engineering. Some of the topics covered include thermal properties, thermodynamic systems, work and heat transfer processes, perfect (ideal) gases, 1st Law and 2nd Law of thermodynamics, steam table and the Ranking cycle. You’ll spend around four hours per week in lectures and workshops studying for this module.

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules may change or be updated over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for the latest information on available modules.

Studio projects offered in the third year seek to extend your ability to tackle briefs for more complex building types. These are linked to environmental systems modules that provide material to inform this work. Independent research skills are nurtured through completion of a dissertation that allows you to develop a specialism in a relevant area of your own choice.

Environmental Services Design 2

Introducing you to large scale building services, principally natural ventilation, air conditioning and other environmental control systems, you’ll discuss the reasons for resorting to and avoiding A/C and the consequent design issues. You’ll also cover some of the following topics including: Assessments of heat gains and losses, thermal comfort and relevant climatic data system types and associated secondary plant introduced; plant selection, location, sizing and design alternatives discussed. For this module you’ll have a one two-hour lecture per week.

Thermodynamics and Heat Transfer 2

This module develops and advances the principles of thermodynamics and how these are applied in the expression and solution of simple engineering problems as well as thermofluids and its application within building environment engineering. You’ll spend around two hours per week in lectures and two hours per week in practicals studying for this module.

Advanced Study Dissertation

This is an individual project module which seeks to develop the ability to plan, execute and report on a piece of work at a professional level. The detailed content of the project is a matter for discussion between you and your supervisor. However, the project will normally involve a mixture of experimental, theoretical and computational work together with a relevant literature review. You will see your supervisor each week for one hour. 

Differential Equations and Calculus for Engineers

You will learn techniques for solving selected classes of ordinary differential equations (ODEs) relevant to the analysis of engineering topics. This module also provides the basic calculus to help analyse engineering problems in two or three dimensions and special solutions of partial differential equations relevant to engineering applications. You will spend around three hours per week in lectures and workshops.

Design Studio 3

This module focuses on developing your practical architectural design skills and exploring the relevance of related subjects, such as structure and construction. The emphasis is given to the ‘craftsmanship of architecture’, improving spatial, aesthetic, sensual as well as practical, structural and dimensional qualities of your design. You will learn how to translate an abstract idea into a form with a positive physical presence. The units are organised into five thematic blocks:

  • Urban Settings
  • Making Processes
  • Context
  • Poetic Narratives
  • Sustainable Communities

Teaching is delivered through two six-hour practical sessions per week. 

Fluid Mechanics and the Built Environment 2

This module aims to develop an awareness of fluid mechanics and its application within building environment engineering and to teach you the fundamental principles of fluid mechanics and their application to practical problems in building environment design. You’ll spend around four hours per week in lectures and workshops studying for this module.

Tectonics 3

This module aims to increase knowledge of building technology by focusing on components, connections, structural systems and construction techniques related to medium-scale and large buildings and their sustainable development. Study of the theory of structures reinforced by practical studio based design projects will enable students to quantify forces and actions in structural systems. The module will also increase structural understanding by the examination of some advanced structural forms. You’ll spend around two hours per week in lectures studying for this module.

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules may change or be updated over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for the latest information on available modules.

The final year introduces advanced environmental design techniques, which facilitate a holistic approach to design. The year culminates in the completion of a major studio project where you are expected to bring all of your skills to bear in response to a brief for the design of a complex building.

Architectural Humanities 3 (Contemporary Debates)

This course explores contemporary architecture in relation to major social, economic, political, ecological, and technological transformations after the Second World War. A wide range of topics including consumerism, globalization, mass media, cultural identities and changing economic structures are discussed in terms of their role in shaping architectural theory, practice, and built environment. Two hours of lectures each week employ building case studies, film excerpts, and assigned readings to analyse key concepts.

Design Studio 4

This studio-based module aims to develop your skills and approaches to architectural design to a more advanced level through six hours per week of study. You are expected to produce a well-crafted comprehensive design project of some complexity based on a thorough investigation and developmental process. At a more advanced level you’ll be expected to show a comprehensive understanding of the project's technical performance. This module aims to achieve the following General Attributes of the ARB/RIBA Criteria.

Integrated Environmental Design

You’ll explore the steps involved in the identification of appropriate environmental strategies for integration within the context of an overall building design and practice the development of these ideas from scheme design to detailed design stage. Emphasis will be placed on developing strategies to a level appropriate to the relevant design stage and the effective communication of the strategy to both technical and non-technical audiences at each stage. You’ll have a one-hour tutorial each week to support your learning during this module.

Practice and Management

Introducing you to the context of professional practice, this module prepares you for your year in placement by discussing the year out, how to go about getting the right job and the skills involved in achieving this. Through two hours of lectures each week you’ll look at the important regulatory requirements and processes and the principles and priorities of running a traditional contract on site together with standard documents used in this process.

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules may change or be updated over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for the latest information on available modules.

Fees and funding

UK students

£9,250
Per year

International students

To be confirmed in 2020*
Keep checking back for more information
*For full details including fees for part-time students and reduced fees during your time studying abroad or on placement (where applicable), see our fees page.

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland starting your course in the 2021/22 academic year, you will pay international tuition fees.

This does not apply to Irish students, who will be charged tuition fees at the same rate as UK students. UK nationals living in the EU, EEA and Switzerland will also continue to be eligible for ‘home’ fee status at UK universities until 31 December 2027.

For further guidance, check our Brexit information for future students.

Additional costs

As a student on this course, you should factor some additional costs into your budget, alongside your tuition fees and living expenses. You should be able to access most of the books you’ll need through our libraries, and the department covers the cost of basic design materials as well as the return travel and accommodation related to compulsory field trips.

If you choose to take the South Africa live build field trip, you will need to contribute around £1,200 towards this and raise additional funds of around £1,000 through charitable activity.

As a first year undergraduate there are certain small pieces of equipment you will need on joining us. A list will be sent to you along with induction instructions but please allow around £150.

Large format printing is a requirement for Architecture students, we are reviewing the volume of printing we ask our students to produce in order to reduce costs, but for current requirements allow around £600 per year for printing.

The department has two PC labs running design software, and while we do not require that you purchase your own device, we have found that many students do so. Depending upon your device preference, allow from £600 for the purchase and budget also for software where this is not available through free student licence agreements.

Please note that these figures are approximate and subject to change.

Scholarships and bursaries

The University of Nottingham offers a wide range of bursaries and scholarships. These funds can provide you with an additional source of non-repayable financial help. For up to date information regarding tuition fees, visit our fees and finance pages.

Faculty-specific funding

In addition to the above, students applying to the Faculty of Engineering may be eligible for faculty-specific or industry scholarships.

Home students*

Over one third of our UK students receive our means-tested core bursary, worth up to £1,000 a year. Full details can be found on our financial support pages.

* A 'home' student is one who meets certain UK residence criteria. These are the same criteria as apply to eligibility for home funding from Student Finance.

International/EU students

We offer a range of Undergraduate Excellence Awards for high-achieving international and EU scholars from countries around the world, who can put their Nottingham degree to great use in their careers. This includes our European Union Undergraduate Excellence Award for EU students and our UK International Undergraduate Excellence Award for international students based in the UK.

These scholarships cover a contribution towards tuition fees in the first year of your course. Candidates must apply for an undergraduate degree course and receive an offer before applying for scholarships. Check the links above for full scholarship details, application deadlines and how to apply.

Careers

You will have developed the full set of architectural design skills offered by our BArch course but with a specialism in environmental design. Graduates may gain experience with consulting engineers and gain Chartered Engineer status or follow the same part as our BArch students towards gaining professional architect status.

Professional recognition

This course is recognised by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) and the Architects' Registration Board (ARB) for exemption from their Part One professional examination. It is also accredited by the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE).

Boost your earning potential

Which university courses boost graduate wages the most? Studying with us could help you to earn more.

  • We are second highest in the UK for female engineering graduate earnings, five years after graduation
  • We are second highest in the Midlands for male engineering graduate earnings, five years after graduation

Our graduates work for a range of companies including global engineering and construction firms such as Atkins, Arup and Laing O’Rourke to smaller national and regional consultancies such as Pick Everard, Preston Barber and Long & Partners.

(Source: Institute for Fiscal Studies data: www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-44413086)

Average starting salary and career progression

87.3% of undergraduates from the Department of Architecture and Built Environment secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. The average annual salary for these graduates was £23,150.*

* HESA Graduate Outcomes 2020. The Graduate Outcomes % is derived using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time within the UK.

Studying for a degree at the University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take.

Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.

Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.

The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers (Ranked in the top ten in The Graduate Market in 2013-2020, High Fliers Research).

RIBA

This course is accredited by the Royal Institute of British Architects. 

ARB

This course is accredited by the Architects Registration Board (ARB).

CIBSE

This course is currently in the process of accreditation by the Engineering Council through the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) and offers excellent prospects of obtaining a rewarding job in an advancing industry. Graduates may study for a further year at masters level before gaining the necessary industrial experience to gain Chartered Engineer status, or may work towards Chartership through company training schemes.

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The University has been awarded Gold for outstanding teaching and learning

Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) 2017-18

Disclaimer

This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.