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Unit of study_

CIVL4860: Architectural to Structural Design

Semester 2, 2021 [Normal day] - Remote

CIVL4860 is a core final year unit for BE/BDesArch students aimed at enhancing students' skills in bridging between the architectural and engineering disciplines. The Unit will have a particular focus on developing strategies for how best to resolve the frequently conflicting interests and preferred concept solutions for addressing architectural and structural requirements for a building with given functions. Students will work in groups on developing final building designs from scratch from project briefs. Architectural and structural designs will be detailed in group presentations and reports.

Unit details and rules

Unit code CIVL4860
Academic unit Civil Engineering
Credit points 6
(CIVL3235 or CIVL3811) and BDES3026
Assumed knowledge


Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Tim Wilkinson,
Lecturer(s) Jonathan Evans,
John Hewitt,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Participation Participation
10% Multiple weeks n/a
Outcomes assessed: LO6
Presentation group assignment Milestone architecture: oral progress report
5% Week 06
Due date: 15 Sep 2021 at 14:00
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5
Presentation group assignment Milestone structural engineering: oral progress report
5% Week 11
Due date: 27 Oct 2021 at 14:00
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Assignment group assignment Final project report
Group project report based on designs developed in weeks 1 to 13
50% Week 13
Due date: 12 Nov 2021 at 18:00
50 pages approx
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO3 LO2
Presentation group assignment Seminar presentation
30% Week 13
Due date: 10 Nov 2021 at 14:00
15 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5
group assignment = group assignment ?

Assessment summary

  • Milestone architecture progress reports: in oral and written form. The written progress report should include: a draft of architectural design with motivation and a description of architectural challenges, a first draft of structural design and description of architectural challenges, and the choice of presentation medium.
  • Milestone structural engineering progress report: in oral and written form. The report should include a final draft of architectural design, and a final draft of structural design with motivation and a description how the structure supports the architectural idea.
  • Participation mark: The mark is awarded on the basis of the team commitment shown by individual students in the previous group tasks, in particular the Milestone oral and written progress reports.
  • Presentation: A presentation will be made by the students of their brief and their suggested architectural and structural solutions, including scrapped alternatives, with motivation. an independent panel assesses the work.
  • Project report: A written report which details the content of the presentation and addresses how the group resolved possible conflicting architectural and structural interest in arriving at the final solution.

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range


High distinction

85 - 100



75 - 84



65 - 74



50 - 64



0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

For more information see

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. translate conceptual notions into spatio-material qualities within the design in order to meet the needs of the users and intensify the experience of architecture
  • LO2. formulate and solve structural design problems
  • LO3. prepare documentation to communicate results of design tasks (appropriate for architectural and engineering practice)
  • LO4. inform action through knowledge of natural systems, built environments and the relationship between urban contexts and architectural design
  • LO5. refine strategies of architectural integration by demonstrating the ability to think through a project conceptually, addressing multiple parameters across the discipline and investigating concerns that allow a variety of possible solutions
  • LO6. manage and contribute to successful completion of team-based architectural and structural projects.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

lectures have been added and marks allocated to interim presentations


The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

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