The teaching of “professional practice” has been standard in US graduate architecture programs for decades. In the National Architectural Accrediting Board’s 2020 update to their “Conditions for Accreditation,” professional practice was defined as “professional ethics, the regulatory requirements, the fundamental business processes relevant to architecture practice in the United States, and the forces influencing change in these subjects.”
The promise of professional expertise under “Green Reconstruction” is a double-edged sword for which new pedagogical models are necessary. How might architects’ roles as community and client advocates be taught in a context of ever-more competitive and specialized professional market shares of "service provision?" Where in the technical, aesthetic, and fiscal chain of architectural operations between the mouse and the jobsite does ethical, professional responsibility lie? Who should be held accountable in the profession for the very composition of the profession, considering glaring racialized, gendered, and economic disparities (among others), and how might that accountability be designed and sustained? What counts as “best” business practice in an economy and profession where wealth’s default flows are increasingly from those who need it most toward those who need it least? And for all of these: who decides? In this special session, faculty members and organizers from institutions shifting their professional practice curricula shared their motivations, methods, and challenges when addressing these and other questions before opening the conversation up to all attendees.
Jacob Moore, Associate Director, Buell Center
Rebecca Berry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Robert Mohr, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Carisima Koenig, Pratt Institute
Kwesi Daniels, Tuskegee University
Megan Groth, Woodbury University
The June 2021 Teacher’s Conference, "Curriculum for Climate Agency," as a collaboration between the European Association for Architectural Education (EAAE) and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA), welcomed a range of formats for presentation and communication, from full‐paper and project-based presentations, to workshop‐based interactions, to graphic, visual and/or textual analyses of projects that responded to the ten scholarship themes. More information about the conference can be found here.