Course Title: Landscape Architecture Final Project

Part A: Course Overview

Course ID: 007695

Course Title: Landscape Architecture Final Project

Credit Points: 36

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


315H Architecture & Design


Sem 2 2006,
Sem 2 2007

Course Coordinator: SueAnne Ware

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 3429

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: city

Course Coordinator Availability: variable

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

Satisfactory Completion of Pre-Major Project ARCH 1134

Course Description

Major Project is a one semester course which allows the student to explore a topic or project of relevance to Landscape Architecture. Students are supervised by one or more staff members and/or others and assessed by a cross section of staff of the course and others. Major projects bring together and demonstrate knowledge and skills learned in landscape architecture through an advanced project based upon the student’s interests and to make a contribution to the theory and practice of landscape architecture through advanced individual study.

Major Project has a special place at RMIT. It tends to reflect what is valued or being explored in the course. It is the major opportunity for students to explore something in particular or to produce something to be recognised for. Major Project plays a central role in the design discourse of the program.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course will build upon previous design studios, pre-major project seminar, history and theory courses as well as communications and technical courses. It is the final independent design thesis / project in the 4 year degree.

E. Enabling knowledge and skills for capabilities

• Critical Reflection: Ability to reflect on and assess their own body of design practice work through a process of life-long learning and development.
• Design Research: Ability to undertake landscape architectural research through design investigations and frame that research through relevant written or representational exegesis.
• Analytical Thinking: Ability to analyze a given condition, and to consider and assign priority to relevant constraints.
• Synthesis: Ability to engage with and develop innovative design responses.
o Ability to respond to relevant design questions and problems through constructive and integrative design practices and proposals.
o Critical appreciation of the global context for landscape architectural design and an ability to situate that body of design work in relation to relevant precedent.
o Integrative design abilities across a range of scales, design experiences and environments based on an understanding of design as a speculative and analytical process for addressing relevant architectural questions and problematics.
o Ability to identify design obstacles and opportunities, propose relevant design responses, and develop strategies for implementation of an integrative landscape architectural project.
o Critically and creatively adapt to unforeseen design situations or outcomes

• Communication: Representational communication skills that include graphical (manual & computer aided), drawings, physical modeling, and other modes of relevant representation.
o Advanced oral and written skills to enable clear arguments to be articulated and developed.
o Represent, manipulate and articulate spatial information.
o Harnessing communication skills to enable information to be accessible to clients, design teams, consulting professionals, Government bodies and community stakeholders.

1. A student should be able to place their Major project work in an appropriate and productive philosophical / theoretical / social and / or historical frame of reference.

2. A student should have developed the appropriate design processes and explored design work.

3. A student should be able to articulate, explore, a focused formal interest for their project.

4. Students should be able to position their project within the relevant types of landscape / space.

5. Students should be able to position their project within the relevant traditions of landscape architectural design.

6. Students should have developed the technical basis of their major project.

7. Students should have devised a management strategy and time-line for their major project.

8. Students should be able to work independently.

9. At the end of the Semester the student will be able to demonstrate a high standard of design literacy and ability.

Student Generated Learning Outcomes (In addition to the learning objectives outlined about, Students should work directly with their supervisors to set their own set of learning objectives for this course.)
8. etc.

Overview of Learning Activities

As the Major Project is the work of an individual with the supervision of one or more persons the program has been produced to provide you with both the opportunity group and individual participation. Each student is required to meet weekly with his or her supervisor and to meet as timetabled with their supervisors. At specified intervals all students will be asked to present their work to date to an invited panel and their fellow colleagues. At second semester presentations it is assumed that students will be presenting design work and not research. (Unless this has been negotiated or the project is a written thesis.) Every attempt should be made by the student to seek additional feed-back from interested critics. The course co-ordinator and your personal supervisor will suggest suitable critics and additional advisers for specific parts of your study.

Overview of Learning Resources

To be determined by students in consultation with their tutors.

Overview of Assessment

The Major mark received is a holistic assessment of the Major Project. The final mark is based on the final presentation, progress made during the semester, and moderation. The areas listed here are analytical categories to allow a disentangling and appreciation of a project. The Major mark is not a sum of these categories; it is an agreed upon peer review and overall assessment. It is meant to be a balanced account weighing up the positives and negatives of a project. More complete and partial accounts of how a project is valued and assessed are to be found in the individual assessors’ reports. These give detailed discussion of the strengths and weakness’ of projects as well as overall and balanced assessments from the point of view of the particular assessor. The Major mark awarded by the course represents an obviously simplified account of the value of a project. The assessment or mark is based significantly on design.

These areas apply to all forms of Major Project:

1. Conceptualisation
The qualities (clarity, focus, coherence, productivity, originality, judgement, initiative, subtlety etc.) of the framework employed or approach taken to produce the Major product. Conceptual development must go beyond the initial idea; it must be explored, developed upon, and tested. Degree of difficulty of project and the scope of the project will also be taken into account.

2. Development
How well and in what manner the framework is employed to produce the Major product (how rigorously, productively and creatively the framework was utilised or developed upon through the work). Design projects should display a significant degree of formal development.
Evidence of relevant exploration / process (Work that contributed to the Major product) beyond the actual displayed product should be available though not necessarily shown. This would include productive explorations and development that contributed to the Major work. Students will be expected to make available at presentation time (not handed in) a physical record of a) design development and experiment, b) technical exploration and c) historical and theoretical exploration. This may be made available as a series of work-books or an extensive portfolio etc. It is expected that this product will document, with appropriate notes and explanation, the history of the project with a degree of detail. This is the first part of your documentation for your archive.

3. Qualities of the Finished Product
The qualities of the finished design product or argument / findings of a written thesis consists of a significant amount of quality product and displays a degree of mastery (of; skills, techniques, analysis, design generation, formal development, articulation and elaboration of form, of the interpretation and use of history and theory, the relevant traditions, constraints, technology, construction, the project as a whole etc.). The project should display an integration of theory and practice.

4. Communication
The communication ability and quality of the work itself (without the presenter present). This includes the ability of the work to put itself in the various contexts that are relevant to the Major product.

5. Presentation
The quality, clarity and fidelity (to the project) of the student’s presentation of their Major product.

Overall Major Projects must be clear, focused, coherent, productive, and display a significant degree of development. The Major Project must display a degree of mastery and a significant amount of quality product. The Major Project must be communicated compellingly and clearly with out the presentation. Design projects should have significant qualities. Presentations must also be clear, concise, and compelling. The qualities of Major Project should be apparent without verbal presentation.