About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 2348-2357
Publication year: 2010
ISBN: 978-84-614-2439-9
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 3rd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 15-17 November, 2010
Location: Madrid, Spain

[PLURI]POTENTIAL ECOLOGIES – COMPLEX ADAPTIVE SYSTEMS AND LEARNING IN “ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN III” COURSE AT UNIVERSITÀ DI BOLOGNA

A. Erioli

Università di Bologna (ITALY)
As a researcher and teacher (course of Architectural Design 3) at Università di Bologna, Faculty of Engineering, in order to leverage novelty in architectural thinking, innovation was promoted in:

. teaching methods
. theory + design strategies
. tools

Teaching methods

The Complex Adaptive Systems (CAS) paradigm influenced education, learning and knowledge. General assumptions about classroom learning tend towards a one-way information flow from a teacher to a relatively passive learner within a linear path (from theory to application) and an homogeneous knowledge base. Research has shown a different, non linear landscape, where learners are diverse (both in knowledge and learning ways), theory and application have mutual influence and intercommunication (multiple and dense information flow) is the basis for knowledge intensification. Knowledge is continuously created, so recognizing, capturing and questioning it is vital (source:
http://www.siliconyogi.com/andreas/it_professional/sol/complexsystems/EducationandCAS.html#Topic21).
The course uses a social network (first opened on http://ar-ca3.ning.com/ - moved to http://grou.ps/arca3/ - public and seamlessly connected to other web ecologies) as a “meme pool”: the flow of memes (basic units of information) forms networks of raising emergent complexity up to evolved systems of thinking in this platform for knowledge exchange, an information ecosystem that is an aspect of our natural ecosystem. Students and teachers share experiences and are exposed to different stimulations, engaging reflection in front of the unexpected and the heterogeneous.
Workshops (used to teach tools) are a necessary completion of a theoretical framework; the intensive knowledge application to a specific issue through a “learning by doing” experience pushes cognition acceleration.


Theory + design strategies

The core of the approach is a theoretical framework which gravitates around the key concepts of

. nature as a CAS
. emergence
. complexity + network model
. information, morphogenesis and evolution
. environmental sensibility and design ecologies

Design strategies follow a 3 stages open path: rule-based morphogenesis, trials and errors, evaluation and selection. “Errors” are the real chances of learning in front of the unexpected: the new information gained can then feedback in the design process or make it diverge towards new paths. Environmental sensibility is embedded since morphogenesis through information-driven processes and perpetually monitored.

Tools

Knowledge is a continuous process of modeling, tools and brains are mutually shaping each other. The course structure exploits a set of tools ranging from teaching to design tools (taught through workshops), the most important being:

Teaching tools:
. the social network and its connected web ecologies
. VUE (visual understanding environment): non-linear organization of lectures, focusing on connections more than on notions;
. lectures by leading-edge figures of architectural scenario (t<>p lecture series - http://ar-ca3.ning.com/events/4095693:Event:613 – now on http://grou.ps/arca3/calendar/event/130300)

Design tools:
. Rhinoceros
. Rhinoscript, Grasshopper
. Autodesk® Maya
. Ecotect

Tools were taught leading to the fabrication of a simple design idea from the digital model. Despite our lack of digital fabrication tools it was important to go through an engineering process of complex shapes.
@InProceedings{ERIOLI2010[PL,
author = {Erioli, A.},
title = {[PLURI]POTENTIAL ECOLOGIES – COMPLEX ADAPTIVE SYSTEMS AND LEARNING IN “ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN III” COURSE AT UNIVERSITÀ DI BOLOGNA},
series = {3rd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2010 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-614-2439-9},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Madrid, Spain},
month = {15-17 November, 2010},
year = {2010},
pages = {2348-2357}}
TY - CONF
AU - A. Erioli
TI - [PLURI]POTENTIAL ECOLOGIES – COMPLEX ADAPTIVE SYSTEMS AND LEARNING IN “ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN III” COURSE AT UNIVERSITÀ DI BOLOGNA
SN - 978-84-614-2439-9/2340-1095
PY - 2010
Y1 - 15-17 November, 2010
CI - Madrid, Spain
JO - 3rd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2010 Proceedings
SP - 2348
EP - 2357
ER -
A. Erioli (2010) [PLURI]POTENTIAL ECOLOGIES – COMPLEX ADAPTIVE SYSTEMS AND LEARNING IN “ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN III” COURSE AT UNIVERSITÀ DI BOLOGNA, ICERI2010 Proceedings, pp. 2348-2357.
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