Architecture is the material expression of a society the members of which erect buildings for themselves which they treat in particular ways. A history of architecture seeks to describe changes in forms of aesthetic appearance, the development of different types of structure and the increasing differentiation of demands made on buildings of a functional type. Buildings are organized and produced; they are designed in compliance with the law and are used in an orderly way. For this reason architectural history always means engaging with the variety of conventions which determine human action and which are observed by all agents from architect to commissioner to user.
In our teaching architectural history is integrated into the broader contexts of the histories of art and culture. We acquaint students with the fundamentals of building and the basic vocabulary of architectonic thought by having practice combine with theoretical reflection on architecture. Using this approach it is our aim to open the way for students to understanding the ways in which our built environment has been historically shaped, as well as the history of their profession. A systematic perspective of this type is fundamental to being able to analyze architecture, critically engage with one’s own design practice and communicate one’s own projects whether at university or in one’s later career.