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Complexity and simplicity: tensions in teaching computation to large numbers of architecture students.

Spaeth, A. Benjamin; Dounas, Theodoros; Kieferle, Joachim


A. Benjamin Spaeth

Theodoros Dounas

Joachim Kieferle


Aulikki Herneoja

Toni Österlund

Piia Markkanen


This paper describes the challenges and approaches to introduce computational thinking to a large and diverse group of architecture students during an international workshop with 300 students from different cultural backgrounds and educational levels, also integrating a diverse group of tutors whose computational expertise varied extremely. The approach suggested articulating a design task which enforced computational thinking but enabled different levels of engagement with the computer as a tool. Hypothetically this would allow all participants to engage with the computational thinking agenda regardless their computational affinity even whilst applying analogue methods. Besides the intercultural experience the workshop was successful in exposing a large group of students and tutors to the concepts of computational design whilst accommodating different learning preferences and engagement with the computer as a device.

Start Date Aug 22, 2016
Publication Date Aug 31, 2016
Publisher New Publisher Required
Pages 229-236
ISBN 978949120105
Institution Citation SPAETH, A.B., DOUNAS, T. and KIEFERLE, J. 2016. Complexity and simplicity: tensions in teaching computation to large numbers of architecture students. In Herneoja, A., Ă–sterlund, T. and Markkanen, P. (eds.) Proceedings of the 34th Education and research in computer aided architectural design in Europe conference (eCAADe 2016): complexity and simplicity, 22-26 August 2016, Oulu, Finland. Oulu: University of Oulu [online], volume 1, pages 229-236. Available from http://papers.cumincad....ks/paper/ecaade2016_104
Keywords Computation education; CAAD; Large cohorts; Computational strategies
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