Description —
Professional Practice is an introduction to the profession of architecture. My approach to teaching emphasizes the need to be a ‘reflective practitioner’ that continually learns from one’s own work and evolving societal situations (Schön 1991). It also introduces the need for contingency and resilience within practice and the different facets of the profession including the finding of work, design, construction, occupancy, warranty, and post-occupancy evaluation (Till 2009). Architects often do not engage with users of the built environments they create, especially after construction, and the course stresses the importance of studying the everyday life of built environments both before and after the work is complete.
The class explores the role of the architect in society throughout history, now, and in the future. (Kostof 2000) It introduces different forms of practice, striving to capture a broad swath of types of endeavours at different scales, and in diverse contexts far beyond what might be considered conventional forms of practice. 
The course investigates how different models of practice influence the built and theoretical work of the architect. The course also stresses that the practice of architecture utilizes the collective knowledge, skill, and input of many people in addition to the architect including community participation, engineers, builders, clients, cost consultants, authorities having jurisdiction, and other governmental officials. Understanding and integrating their expertise is essential for the creation of built work. In addition, the course looks at the creation of the work of an architect from almost universally accepted documents, tools, and processes. The course explores the documents and procedures needed to create a building. As these items evolve it investigates whether the work or the model of practice changes. 
The Manifesto assignment invites students to present, through a poster and presentation to the class, their voice within the practice of architecture. The timing alongside their first design project is intentional as they also consider the Manifesto in relation to the design work they have just produced. This enables them to reflect on whether their work echoes the ambitions of the Manifesto. ​​​​​​​
The Manifesto encourages students to formulate a position in relation to the profession of architecture with the hope that it will provide the groundwork for on-going discussion and future development. It is important that students start to understand their aspirations as to how they want to practice architecture and the type of work they want to pursue. It also helps them to decide on future work term placements.
I share my experiences throughout the course. As a practicing architect working at multiple scales I have diverse expertise to reference. In addition, I also work within academia and am involved in research. I share these different possibilities with the students. Students enjoy both the academic and real world examples my background provides. They are particularly fascinated by the design build projects with my partner as an alternative model of practice. Many students (and clients and practitioners) want a way of working that engages contractors and consultants in a highly collaborative process rather than in the hierarchical and confrontational contractual models that permeate the profession and construction industry.  
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