Mackintosh School of Architecture
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|Affiliations||Glasgow School of Art, University of Glasgow|
The Mackintosh School of Architecture (MSA) is one of the five schools which make up the Glasgow School of Art, situated in the Garnethill area of Glasgow, Scotland. The Mackintosh School of Architecture is the Glasgow School of Art's only academic school concerned with a single discipline.
The school is based in the Bourdon Building, named after the French architect Eugene Bourdon, the first Professor of Architecture at the Glasgow School of Art.
Architecture has been a part of the teaching at the GSA from the middle of the 19th century. Taught on a part-time basis until 1968, the School boasts Charles Rennie Mackintosh and two of Glasgow's most notable modern architects, Andy MacMillan and Isi Metzstein of the architectural practice Gillespie, Kidd & Coia, amongst its most eminent alumni.
Since 1968, the programmes have been predominantly for full-time students, but it continues to be Scotland's only school of architecture to offer part-time mode of study.
The Mac today
The Mac provides the teaching required for registration as an architect in the United Kingdom, and is recognised by the Architects Registration Board (ARB) and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), in programmes that may be taken in full-time or part-time modes.
Many schools of architecture claim to balance art with science. It does this by juxtaposing our involvement in the community of artists, designers and architects that comprises the GSA, with their own dedicated science-led 'green' research unit within the school - MEARU (Mackintosh Environmental Architecture Research Unit). This research unit is also increasingly taking on consultancy to practitioners at feasibility or early design stage, which is then fed into the teaching from first year to postgraduate level.
The School collaborates in teaching with the world recognised Department of Urban Studies at Glasgow University, and runs a studio based courses for students of engineering for the universities of Glasgow and Paisley.
The Mac's teaching staff come from a wide variety of backgrounds and specialist subject areas and are all active in research, teaching development. The School also offers consultancy services and where possible this has involved students and staff in a number of commissions, the results of which are often fed back into the teaching and learning environment.
The School was recently awarded the highest rating classification by the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) for the quality of its teaching, and in the last research assessment exercise The Glasgow School of Art's research activity was noted as being of national importance.
At the Mackintosh School of Architecture, the emphasis is on student-centred learning, which means involving students in a wide range of experiences and exercises where the individual progressively is encouraged to develop their own direction and solutions. This is achieved through set studio design projects, supported by both full-time studio tutors and leading practitioners, in a rigorous but supportive critical environment.
The curriculum is organised in Five Stages, covering design, construction, structures, environmental science, history, sociology, economics, law and management, as well as skills in hand drawing, computer-aided drawing, three-dimensional visualisation, modelmaking and workshop techniques, photography, audiovisual and verbal presentation, and core skills including problem solving and working with other people.
Students present their studio work for review by a group of their peers, staff and invited critics. The staff give a formative assessment from the reviews and a summative assessment at the end of the academic year, with continuous feedback from tutorials. The lecture courses are assessed by essay, coursework and formal written examinations.
The courses contained within the programmes are necessarily wide ranging, to nurture aptitude, enthusiasm and commitment for the demands of professional practice in the contemporary world.
Complementing the studio-based work, there are integrated lectures, seminars and practical courses taught by both full-time and visiting lecturers. The Mackintosh School attracts the foremost international architects, designers and critics, adding value to the teaching and learning opportunities throughout the course, and balanced by a programme of staff and student exchanges with leading international schools in Australia, Barcelona, Berlin, Lusanne, Madrid, Mendrisio, Paris, Urbana-Champaign, and Vienna.
Students also become involved in live projects, field and study visits, research and competitions. Recently organised study visits include Amsterdam, Aarhus, Barcelona, Paris, Copenhagen, Graz, Oporto and Stockholm.