TSHWANE UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY

Student Experience

WHAT IS ARCHITECTURE?

 

Architecture is a society's way of giving form to itself. It is not only expressive of culture but actively participates in shaping it. Architecture is society's most public and visible art; it is the manifestation of our most cherished values, patterns and skills.

What does a career in architecture entail?

 

As a discipline architecture falls in the creative realm and has its roots both in art and science. It demands the love of precision, geometry, and order as well as a passion for mystery, wonder, and the unknown. The study of architecture involves an exploration of diverse disciplines that influence the built environment. Architectural education is, by necessity, the most comprehensive course of tertiary studies. It not only prepares students for a future in the profession of architecture but provides an extraordinary foundation for a multitude of interdisciplinary and related fields. If you aspire to be a professional with a social mission, if you appreciate the value of science and technology and are simultaneously intrigued by the revelations offered by works of art, then architecture may well be your field. Architecture is also one of the most diversified and stimulating of careers. Students learn not only to handle the conflicting demands of function, aesthetics, technology and economy, all inherent aspects of design, but are trained in a variety of means of expression including writing, model-making, drawing, photography, video, digital media, and verbal presentations. An architectural office is an informal and colourful environment. Projects done in an office are usually done as a team effort involving everybody in the office as well as many others like clients, consultants and contractors.

Career opportunities

 

The studies you do in architecture could lead to a career as a professional architect, architectural technologist, building inspector / evaluator, building product consultant or simply specializing in draughting.
The study of architecture is a lifetime occupation. 
You may choose to complete professional registration requirements and enter practice immediately, or you may pursue further studies in a specialized area of architecture, planning, management, or multi-media communications. The interests you develop at Technikon Pretoria may lead you into other fields of design or qualify you as an architectural critic, journalist, educator, historian, conservationist, environmentalist, community attorney and public policy advisor. 
You might extend your knowledge of urban, socio-economic and environmental issues and choose a career in such areas. The knowledge and skills you acquire studying architecture can serve you and society in a wide variety of rich and rewarding ways.
Graduates and diplomats of Technikon Pretoria have an excellent reputation in the design and building industries, for their technical background, their design competence, and their current and practical knowledge. Graduates are employed by architectural and planning firms; material or building manufacturers; building contractors; developers government agencies; and graduates often establish their own consulting firms.

What do we teach at Tshwane University of Technology, Main Campus?

 

We have a rational, technologically based approach to teaching and learning architecture and it is primarily focused on Southern Africa.

The architectural profession has a key role to play in the future of this country and subcontinent, addressing widening ecological issues, projected population growth and mass urbanisation through the planning and design of future settlements and their buildings.
The Apartheid policy and separate development approach resulted in the creation of artificially structured towns and cities in this country and it is the management and design of these towns which pose a daunting challenge to the architectural profession now and in the future.

It is clear that there are many important unresolved issues in our society . We intend to contribute towards the alleviation of the situation. 
A theoretical and academic approach does not easily relate to the realities of peoples' lives and that is why we have opted for a rational, pragmatic approach with the emphasis on an appropriate technology in teaching architecture.

The Department

 

The Department is committed to the education and training of Architectural Technologists and Architects with a vocational emphasis by employing a co-operative academic programme with the architectural profession. This approach leans towards the indentureship principles that were in place before architectural teaching was firmly established at the tertiary institutions. With this symbiotic approach in teaching architecture, the disparity between education and practice is removed and it allows for a part-time option to enter the profession. The language medium of the Department of Architecture is English. There are approximately 180 students in the Department comprising a first year intake of 60. The size of school considering the smaller working tutorial groups in Design, allows students to receive individual and personal attention to the extent that most staff members know all their students by their first names and they are sensitive to the particular needs, strengths, weaknesses of the students and can therefore encourage their individuality. The Department has a dynamic group of lecturing staff comprising 7 full-time and 17 part-time lecturers.

The Course

 

Architectural Technology: Applied Design is a two-tiered Bachelors' degree, the B Tech: Architectural Technology, that extends over four years. A further two years of study culminates in the M Tech: Architectural Technology degree. The Department also offers a Bachelors and a Masters degree in Architectural Management. Admission is based on a written aptitude test. The minimum requirement is a Senior Certificate or equivalent qualification. No specific subjects are required but Art, Industrial Art, Mathematics and good English is a recommendation. We are the only Architecture Department in South Africa where matric Mathematics and Science is not considered a prerequisite.