Architecture Communications Class | What You’ll Learn And Why - (2023)

Architecture Communications Class | What You’ll Learn And Why - (1)


Communications Class

When you start architecture school, you may be required to take a class called communications, or visual representation or something similar. This is going to be new to most people whether you have done any kind of drawing, graphics or design before. So it’s important to know the point of a Communications class.

And if you don’t have a specific Communications class listed on your schedule, you still want to know, because this content is going to be built in somewhere else, or you might have to figure some of it out yourself.

Learn more in the article titled “What Is Architecture School Like And What To Expect

The Purpose Of Architectural Communication

Communication is the exchange of thoughts, ideas, messages or information.

Architectural communication is the exchange of thoughts, ideas, messages or information about architecture, architectural design or the process of architectural design.

(Video) Architecture Communications Class | What You’ll Learn And Why

Communication is a two-dimensional or three-dimensional representation in graphic or visual form of an idea, design or finished project. It is important to remember that communication tools are merely one way of representation. The communication is an abstraction of an idea, design or project – it is one way of representing a part or perspective. Communication is not the idea, or the design or the finished project. It is one way of representing that thing.

Communication classes exist to teach you:

  • Conventions of architectural drawing;
  • Different tools, skills and software used to communicate architectural design, ideas and architecture; and
  • Different methods and processes for creating visual and graphic communication of architectural ideas.

Types Of Architectural Communication

There are many different ways to communicate your ideas about your architectural design and final design process. These types of communication are used in different ways throughout the entire design and documentation process, as well as after a project has been built and constructed.

Types of architectural communication skills and tools you may learn about include:

  • Collage – Collage is often used in the early stages of design to explore ideas and concepts about the project and the design.
  • Drawing Types – Drawing is the primary method of representation in architecture. There are many different types of drawings including:
    • Sketches – Rough or unfinished drawings used in the process of developing designs and exploring ideas of space – perspective, plan, section etc.
    • Diagrams – Representation of parts of a whole or an idea in a simple, graphic form.
    • Two-dimensional (2D) drawings – Represents three-dimensional forms in 2D with orthographic drawing systems. These include plans, sections and elevations.
    • Three-dimensional (3D) drawings – Represents three-dimensional forms with oblique projections or perspective drawing systems.
  • Analogue drawing – Drawing by hand with pen, pencil and paper. Even with all the digital software available, this is an important skill to be able to draw quickly, especially in the early, conceptual stages of design.
  • Physical model making – A physical 3D representation of an object or thing or proposed structure. Used throughout the design process to test ideas and forms as well as represent the final design. Physical models can be made with many different materials.
  • Photography – Photography is used to capture 3-dimensional objects, structures and spaces such as models used in the design process, project sites, design process, finished architectural buildings and interior spaces.
  • 2D digital software – Computer Aided Drawing (CAD) programs such as AutoCAD to develop orthographic and other drawings once the initial design has been developed.
  • 3D digital software – Programs such as Sketchup, Revit or Rhino are used to test and document the three-dimensional form of a design project.
  • Rendering software – You may use rendering software such as Grasshopper to develop final presentation drawings. This is more advanced software and is not usually introduced in the first year.
  • Graphic design software – Programs such as Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign to help you develop images, collages, presentations and also graphic folios, books or reports.

It is important to know communications and software are not the be-all and end-all, especially if you cannot design, or do not know how a building goes together. They are one tool in architecture. You can have a great drawing or photograph of a terrible design and vice versa. So it is important to understand communication as just one part of your architectural toolkit.

Teaching Style And Content

Communications classes can be run in different ways. Similar to a design studio class, there will often be a theory and practical component, and also a focus on skill development, especially in your first year.

(Video) Architecture Design Studio Class | What You'll Learn And Why

  • Lectures (content) – You may participate in a series of lectures that cover different types of communications types, examples, analyses and possibly processes and tips and tricks for creating different methods of representation.
  • Skills and software – You will be asked to develop and test both analogue and digital skills which you will continue to evolve and master over your architectural studies and career. Analogue includes hand drawing, sketching, physical model making, collage and photography. These skills involve testing different materials, pens, papers and processes to represent your ideas. Digital skills may include learning a range of software that can be used to draw, create models or develop graphic presentations. You may be asked to complete short exercises or video or other tutorials to help you learn the basics of these skills.
  • Communication projects – You will be asked to apply software and skills in practical projects. These may be a series of small, independent projects, or they may connect into your design studio projects. They are likely to be individual projects.

Learn more in the article titled “Architecture Design Studio Class | What You’ll Learn And Why

Communications Class Format

Communications classes can vary in format and can be similar to design studios in some ways.

There is likely to be a lecture or content component with the whole year group. This could be delivered live or online. If it is online, it is always important to complete all your preparation work before the tutorial class so you get the maximum benefit and value. That means being organised!!

Tutorial classes are usually in smaller groups. The format will depend on the current content, skills and projects. The tutor may vary the format of a class depending on where the group is at in their work, or particular questions or understanding. So if the work you do in your class is different from a friend, that’s OK. Every tutor is different and every group of students is different. That’s what makes architecture school so interesting.

A communications class may have a range of activities including:

  • Content Review – Review and discussion of content from weekly lectures and readings. Come prepared and with any questions.
  • New content – The tutorial may include some content specific to a communications skill, software, project or activity that is separate to the lecture.
  • Assessment discussion and Q+A – Detailed discussion of the assessment and project expectations and requirements, with an opportunity to ask questions.
  • Informal presentations and feedback – Informal presentation of student work for feedback and discussion – this may occur as individual presentations to the class, in smaller groups or one-on-one to your tutor. The teacher may ask some or all students to present their work and ideas, or may just give general comments and feedback to the whole class.
  • Formal presentation – Formal presentation at the end of a project or semester. This is more likely in a design studio as communications is more often a folio based assessment on how well your work and ideas communicate graphically without you having to explain it.
  • In-class Activities – Specific in-class activities such as model making or collage, drawing or design, that will move you towards developing your ideas for your major project. These may or may not be presented in the class or continued at home.

Iterative Design

Skills development will likely consist of tutorials or small activities or exercises that once completed, are done.

(Video) Architecture Construction Class | What You’ll Learn And Why

However, like design studios, communications projects are often an iterative process. This means that on your project work, you will be unlikely to complete it once and it’s finished. There will always be feedback and room for development and revisions. This does not mean your work is bad. It just means that you are learning and there is room for improvement. For most of your degree, and even throughout your professional life, there will always be room for some improvement, for everyone. That is the nature of creative processes and design.

Workload and Independent Study

Communications class may seem a little bit like a mini design studio, as it may have a series of small projects that involve a certain level of design. However, it is important to note that the focus is on the development of your skills and ability to communicate ideas using architectural conventions and methods, and not so much the concept or design.

The workload of a communications class could be similar to that of a design studio, as it is quite practical. You can choose to explore and experiment with the skills, tools and methods as much or as little as you like. However, the more you play around, the broader your options for presenting your ideas.

If you have a communications class you will likely be introduced to specific skills and software that your particular institution prefer, or maybe can provide access to. Dedicated communications classes will likely cover all the basic skills and tools you will need to get started in your early years of architecture.

If you do not have a dedicated communications class, then some of these skills, tools and representation methods will probably be introduced in other classes. You may learn drawing types, collage, model making in some of your design studios. Digital software may be introduced in design studios or construction classes.

Either way, you will likely only be introduced to these skills and tools at a basic level. It will be expected that you continue to develop and test these skills in your design studios and other subjects as you move through your degree. You may be expected to learn some software independently. There are some great software tutorials available. Your tutor or lecturer may suggest some or start with the software developer for the best ones.

(Video) Abstraction And Representation In Architectural Communication

Do your best to develop some kind of study group or a group of friends who you can talk to and help each other figure out any of these new skills or ideas.

Learn more in the article titled “9 Tips To Be A More Productive Architecture Student

In Summary

Communications is essential in every part of the architectural design and documentation process. Like most of your early subjects, it is not something that is learned for a test and then forgotten. It is developing foundation skills, knowledge and understanding that you will use and continue to build upon for the remainder of your career.

Understanding of communications includes learning skills and software and also knowing how to communicate your ideas well, visually and graphically. It is important to look at other student work and professional work with a critical eye. Collect examples of great methods of communication where you can immediately understand what the author is trying to represent. Consider the techniques, the tools, the layout and general methods of presentation. Analyse examples and experiment with different ideas in your work as you develop a unique representation style of your own.

Don’t be scared to experiment with technique and test different ways of communicating your ideas. Every idea is unique, so why not develop a unique style of representation.

Liz at ArchiMash

(Video) What Is Architecture School Like And What To Expect


What is the importance of communication in architecture? ›

Coordinating the responsibilities of all members is crucial for a successful design. Communication makes it easier to function collectively, and also makes use of the strength of each individual to meet the project deadlines. It's all about getting the right information to the right people at the right time.

What is the subject of architectural communications? ›

Architectural communication is the exchange of thoughts, ideas, messages or information about architecture, architectural design or the process of architectural design. Communication is a two-dimensional or three-dimensional representation in graphic or visual form of an idea, design or finished project.

What do you want to learn about architecture? ›

Architecture is the design and construction of buildings, combining art, mathematics, science and logistics. During an architecture degree, you will learn how to draw accurate designs of buildings either by hand or with computer software.

What is the basic communication architecture? ›

In the basic communication model, the sender encodes the message and transmits the message through communication channels like verbal (face-to-face, over telephone, video calls) and non verbal (newspapers, letters) for sending the message.

What is the meaning of communication architecture? ›

The Software Communications Architecture (SCA) is an open architecture framework that defines a standard way for radios to instantiate, configure, and manage waveform applications running on their platform.

What are the 4 types of communications in line with marketing strategy in architecture profession? ›

The 4 Ps of Marketing for Architects The 4 Ps are position, process, professionals, and portfolio. If you have ever heard a client tell you that all the firms they talked to, including yours, seemed the same, it might be a good idea to focus on the 4 Ps. Find out what makes your firms different than all the rest.

What is the importance of good communication as well as its purposes in academic setup? ›

Effective communication can help to build and foster a safe learning environment where students can thrive, prosper and learn. The importance of establishing good communication at a young age is critical in a child's development and future learning.

What do we study in communication arts? ›

Communication Arts courses cover all facets of effective communication: writing, speaking, reading, listening, researching, illustrating, and more. Recognizing connections in what we hear, what we read, and what we write is more important than ever in a fast-paced world where there is so much new to learn.

What motivates you to study architecture? ›

Architecture allows you to be both artistic and analytical

Architecture is an interdisciplinary field. Drawing concepts and design sketches requires artistic skills, while the technical side of building construction requires deep analytical skills.

What are the benefits of studying architecture? ›

An Architecture degree will teach you how to plan buildings, so they line up with pre-existing structures and provide effective services. You'll learn how to consider the environmental impact of what you design and think about how those designs could be reasonably implemented.

What skills do you learn from architecture? ›

Skills and knowledge
  • design skills and knowledge.
  • knowledge of building and construction.
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail.
  • thinking and reasoning skills.
  • customer service skills.
  • excellent verbal communication skills.
  • analytical thinking skills.
  • the ability to use your initiative.

What are the five 5 communication styles? ›

The five main communications styles include:
  • Aggressive Communication. Used to monopolise the conversation.
  • Passive Communication. Used to avoid conflict.
  • Passive-aggressive Communication. Used to avoid conflict while still showing aggression.
  • Manipulative Communication. ...
  • Assertive Communication.

What are the four 4 communication types? ›

  • Non-verbal communication.
  • Verbal communication.
  • Written communication.
  • Visual communication.

What are the 4 main types of communication? ›

The four main types of communication are verbal, non-verbal, visual and written communication. This article discusses all four types below, but first, let's consider why communication is important at work.

What are the 3 basics of communication? ›

Communication Involves Three Components:
  • Verbal Messages - the words we choose.
  • Paraverbal Messages - how we say the words.
  • Nonverbal Messages - our body language.

What are basic communication skills? ›

Communication skills involve listening, speaking, observing and empathising. It is also helpful to understand the differences in how to communicate through face-to-face interactions, phone conversations and digital communications like email and social media.

What are the three main points of architecture? ›

Rendered memorably into English by Henry Wotton, a seventeenth century translator, “firmness, commodity, and delight” remain the essential components of all successful architectural design.

What is communication as a purpose of design? ›

Communication allows designers to discuss problems, brainstorm solutions, and share ideas. Effective communication is ultimately what enables designers to work with stakeholders and other disciplines to bring ideas to life.

What is communication design in simple words? ›

Overview. Communication design seeks to attract, inspire, create desires and motivate people to respond to messages, with a view to making a favorable impact. This impact can be to the bottom line of the commissioning body, which can be either to build a brand or move sales.

Which architecture is set of communicating services? ›

The logical architecture is a design that depicts the logical building blocks of the Communications Services components and the infrastructure services needed to support them.

What are the 4 C's of communication marketing? ›

The 4Cs for marketing communications: Clarity; Credibility; Consistency and Competitiveness. What is it? The 4Cs (Clarity, Credibility, Consistency, Competitiveness) is most often used in marketing communications and was created by David Jobber and John Fahy in their book 'Foundations of Marketing' (2009).

What do you call a person who does architecture? ›

architect. noun. ar·​chi·​tect ˈär-kə-ˌtekt. : a person who designs buildings and advises in their construction.

What are the 5 importance of communication? ›

Importance of Communication
  • The Basis of Co-ordination. ...
  • Fluent Working. ...
  • The Basis of Decision Making. ...
  • Increases Managerial Efficiency. ...
  • Increases Cooperation and Organizational Peace. ...
  • Boosts Morale of the Employees.

What are the five purposes of communication is most important? ›

Communication serves five major purposes: to inform, to express feelings, to imagine, to influence, and to meet social expectations.

What is the importance of learning communication skills? ›

Successful communication can deepen relations in personal life or professional life. In personal life, they can help us understand better people and situations that happen on a daily basis. Developing communication skills can help us avoid conflicts compromise, and help in better decision making.

What skills do you need for Arts in communication? ›

8 Skills All Communication Majors Must Build
  • Strong Writing Skills. Building strong writing skills now will benefit your career. ...
  • Teamwork. ...
  • People Skills. ...
  • Leadership. ...
  • Creativity. ...
  • Public Speaking Skills. ...
  • Research Skills. ...
  • Media/Marketing Experience.

What is communication art and design? ›

The Communication, Art & Design Department offers students a curriculum taught by faculty members with real-world experience in fields such as photography, public relations, journalism, graphic design, and visual art.

What field is Communication Arts? ›

The Bachelor of Communication Arts is a program that studies the areas of advertising, journalism and public relations, creating a new generation of marketing communicators.

How do you answer why do you choose architecture? ›

Example: “I have a passion for people just as much as I do for buildings. As architects, we're creating functional buildings for clients to use based on their varying needs and desires. Understanding our clients is imperative and ultimately fuels my passion for this field.”

Which architect inspires you the most? ›

Frank Gehry

Many experts describe Gehry's creations as the most inspiring, innovative, and distinct architectural works worldwide.

How can I be a successful architecture student? ›

18 tips to help you succeed and excel in your architecture studies
  1. Time management. For me, time management is one of the most important aspects of any working life. ...
  2. Take care of yourself. Eat well. ...
  3. Don't pull all nighters. ...
  4. Learn to prioritise. ...
  5. Make yourself hireable. ...
  6. Learn to draw. ...
  7. Listen. ...
  8. Don't let it take over your world.

What is the most important thing in architecture? ›

The planning of the project is one of the most fundamental elements of a well-designed building. A well-designed space has a direct impact on people' especially when that space is designed with efficiency in mind. This applies to both buildings, parks and other social infrastructure.

What is the most important thing in being an architect? ›

Aside from basic knowledge, design skills, and being creative, communication is perhaps the most important quality in an architect. Architects are required to work with many people from different industries to make things happen.

How does architecture benefit our lives? ›

Architecture has helped shape society by providing custom living spaces that give us comfort, good health, and safety. It also adds a sense of awe and intrigue to iconic structures throughout the world.

What are 3 skills beneficial to architects and designers? ›

10 Essential skills needed to be an architect
  • Design. Understanding the fundamental principles of design is a necessity to become an architect. ...
  • Computer. ...
  • Communication. ...
  • Problem-solving. ...
  • Leadership skills. ...
  • Mathematics. ...
  • Teamwork. ...
  • Legal Knowledge.
Nov 3, 2022

What are the four 4 basic values in architecture? ›

The 4 primary elements of architecture include the point, line, plane, and volume. The order of these elements represents the transformation from a single point to a one-dimensional line, from a line to a two-dimensional plane, and finally, from a plane to a three-dimensional volume.

What is the core skill of an architect? ›

Building and construction skills

A good architect should not only know how to design but also how to construct a building. Architects should understand the tools, materials and methods used in construction from the initial stages to completion.

What are the 7 communication styles? ›

7 Communication Styles
  • Assertive. This is one of the most recommended communication styles and reflects and promotes high self-esteem. ...
  • The aggressive Style. This style involves winning, even if it is at someone else's expense. ...
  • The Passive-Aggressive Style. ...
  • The Submissive Style. ...
  • The Manipulative Style. ...
  • Direct. ...
  • Indirect.
Jul 10, 2017

What are the 4 key elements of communication? ›

The communication process is made up of four key components. Those components include encoding, medium of transmission, decoding, and feedback.

How to improve communication skills? ›

10 Ways to Improve Your Communication Skills
  1. Listen, listen, and listen. ...
  2. Who you are talking to matters. ...
  3. Body language matters. ...
  4. Check your message before you hit send. ...
  5. Be brief, yet specific. ...
  6. Write things down. ...
  7. Sometimes it's better to pick up the phone. ...
  8. Think before you speak.

What is the best communication style? ›

Assertive communication style. This is considered to be the most effective communication style. A person using this style is confident in their convictions but makes sure that they do not belittle or steamroll others in the conversation.

Why is communication an important part of design? ›

Communication allows designers to discuss problems, brainstorm solutions, and share ideas. Effective communication is ultimately what enables designers to work with stakeholders and other disciplines to bring ideas to life.

What is main importance of communication? ›

In our daily life, communication helps us build relationships by allowing us to share our experiences, and needs, and helps us connect to others. It's the essence of life, allowing us to express feelings, pass on information and share thoughts. We all need to communicate.

What is the importance of communication in planning? ›

An effective communication plan helps your team to: Clarify your goals and objectives. As your communications roadmap, your plan can tell you where you need to go and how to get there. Articulate the relationships between audiences, messages, channels, activities, and materials.

Why is the role of communication important? ›

Effective communication is essential for both individual and team success as it can help you reduce misunderstandings, develop strong relationships and establish yourself as an active team member. Learning to communicate effectively requires time and practice to master.

What skills are required for communication design? ›

  • Ability To Articulate Ideas Confidently. Communication designers need to articulate their ideas through visual communication. ...
  • Ability To Showcase Creativity. ...
  • Exceptional Skills In Design Technology. ...
  • Expertise In Managing Time Effectively.

What is the most important element of communication Why? ›

Intent is the most basic. The underlying force behind every communication. Of the three elements of communication, we argue that intent is the most important.

What does communication design focus on? ›

Communication Design is a specialised field of Design that involves strategically conceiving, visually communicating, and effectively disseminating information, ideas, and products through various mediums such as print, digital etc. It has rapidly evolved into a global industry.

What are the 3 most important purposes of communication? ›

Purposes. Communication serves five major purposes: to inform, to express feelings, to imagine, to influence, and to meet social expectations. Each of these purposes is reflected in a form of communication.

What are three reasons why communication is important? ›

5 Reasons Why Communication is Key
  • A Means to Excel. Clear communication helps to propel you towards what it is you most desire out of life. ...
  • Avoid Misunderstandings. A lot can go awry when something gets lost in translation. ...
  • Develop Strong Relationships. ...
  • Cultivate Growth. ...
  • Build Trust.

What five things should you consider when planning communication? ›

How do you develop a plan for communication?
  • Identify the purpose of your communication.
  • Identify your audience.
  • Plan and design your message.
  • Consider your resources.
  • Plan for obstacles and emergencies.
  • Strategize how you will connect with the media and others who can help you spread your message.
  • Create an action plan.

What is communication planning in simple words? ›

Communication planning represents the dedication of an organization to transparent and ongoing relationships with stakeholders. It defines the ways and means of communication, targeted audiences, and attitudes or behaviours outreach should impact.

What are key messages in communication planning? ›

What are key messages and why are they important? Key messages are the main points of information you want your audience to hear, understand, and remember. They are bite-sized summations that articulate what you do, why you do it, how you are different, and what value you bring to stakeholders.

What are the 7 importance in communication? ›

Use the 7 Cs of Communication as a checklist for all of your communication. By doing this, you'll stay clear, concise, concrete, correct, coherent, complete, and courteous.

What are the advantages of communication? ›

8 benefits of effective communication
  • 1 It promotes trust. ...
  • 2 It promotes team member loyalty. ...
  • 3 It enhances team member engagement. ...
  • 4 It improves teamwork. ...
  • 5 It improves productivity. ...
  • 6 Communication fuels innovation. ...
  • 7 Resolves issues. ...
  • 8 It creates better client relationships.
Jan 12, 2022


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