Studio Culture

A messy studio in Goldsmith Hall
STUDIO CULTURE

The University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture believes in the value of the design studio model. Studio learning encourages dialogue, collaboration, risk-taking, innovation, and learning-by-doing. The studio offers an environment where students can come together to ask questions and make proposals, which are developed and discussed among classmates, faculty, visiting professionals, and the public at large.

Studio learning offers intensive one-on-one instruction from faculty members and provides the opportunity for each student to develop their critical thinking skills and spatial and material sensibilities. The design studio offers a synthetic form of education, where project-based learning becomes the foundation for developing an understanding of and commitment to the school's core values — broadmindedness, interconnectivity, professionalism, exploration, and activism — all in service of our fundamental mission: to improve the quality of the built and natural environments.

Open-ended questions
The school encourages students to embrace studio-based learning as a unique and valuable educational model. Studio creates an environment which allows open-ended questions, for which there may be no "right" answers.

Balance
The school supports its students and faculty in leading balanced lives.

Time-management
Students are encouraged to work smarter, not necessarily longer in studio.

Design process
The school affirms the value of design intention, design process, as well as design product, thus both encouraging and evaluating (1) the student's understanding of the ideas that motivate and the forces that inform the project at hand ("grasp"), (2) the student's assiduousness in the development of ideas and use of information in the process of design ("process" or "effort"), and (3) the material and graphic quality of the studio's final products — be they models, drawings, or representations in other media — as well as the appositeness of the proposed design in its real-world context ("product").

Grades
Grades are but one measure of a student's performance in studio. Advising and counseling are considered integral to a student's studio evaluation.

Collaboration
In addition to individual design projects, the school values partner and group projects at every level of design research and development.

Interdisciplinary opportunities
To become effective designers of and advocates for a quality built environment, the school supports community-based research and design opportunities through which students can acquire a broad range of skills and experiences.

Faculty development
Faculty who teach studio are selected for their ability to inspire students to learn, to engage students in critical thinking, to bring forward their particular expertise, and to convey a sense of optimism about the field of architecture.

Critiques/Reviews
Public presentation and display of the work of the design studio is valued, and is essential in developing skills for effective verbal communication. The school supports considered and respectful dialogue—whether spirited debate or sober discussion — during public presentations.

Diversity
The school supports active, open dialogue and the studio must be a place where diverse life experiences and opinions are shared. A culture of respect and open inquiry supports the life-long learning process that begins in architecture school.

  • Instagram Post
    We are pleased to announce this year’s Design Excellence Award winners! Thirty-five projects, completed by 50 different students, were selected for the 2023-2024 awards out of more than 140 nominations spanning the Fall 2023 and Spring 2024 semesters.
    @utsoa

    We are pleased to announce this year’s Design Excellence Award winners! Thirty-five projects, completed by 50 different students, were selected for the 2023-2024 awards out of more than 140 nominations spanning the Fall 2023 and Spring 2024 semesters.

  • Instagram Post
    We miss you already 🥹
    @utsoa

    We miss you already 🥹

  • Instagram Post
    Congrats, UTSOA grads! We can’t wait to see how you change the world 🤘
    @utsoa

    Congrats, UTSOA grads! We can’t wait to see how you change the world 🤘

  • Instagram Post
    Hats off to our grads! 🎓 <br /><br />We’re so excited to celebrate you tomorrow! Students should check-in in Goldsmith Hall no later than 1:00 pm. More at the link in our bio. <br /><br />#UTGrad24 #UTSOA
    @utsoa

    Hats off to our grads! 🎓

    We’re so excited to celebrate you tomorrow! Students should check-in in Goldsmith Hall no later than 1:00 pm. More at the link in our bio.

    #UTGrad24 #UTSOA

  • Instagram Post
    Congratulations to alums Joseph James (M.Arch ’18) and Diego Zubizarreta Otero (M.Arch ’20) whose design collective, @partnersofplace, was named one of the six 2024 @archleague League Prize winners!<br>
    @utsoa

    Congratulations to alums Joseph James (M.Arch ’18) and Diego Zubizarreta Otero (M.Arch ’20) whose design collective, @partnersofplace, was named one of the six 2024 @archleague League Prize winners!

  • Instagram Post
    T-minus five days until the Class of 2024 walks across the stage! <br><br>Students, there’s still time to submit grad pics and photos from your time at UTSOA – Do so at the link in our bio before Thursday, May 9 for a chance to be featured here and in our pre-commencement slideshow. <br>
    @utsoa

    T-minus five days until the Class of 2024 walks across the stage!

    Students, there’s still time to submit grad pics and photos from your time at UTSOA – Do so at the link in our bio before Thursday, May 9 for a chance to be featured here and in our pre-commencement slideshow.

  • Instagram Post
    For the fourth year in a row, several interior design students have been selected for @metropolismag’s@Future 100! Congratulations to Brooke Bower (MID ’24), Ani Matzakos (BSID ’24), and Jessica Wilsey (MID ’24).
    @utsoa

    For the fourth year in a row, several interior design students have been selected for @metropolismag’s@Future 100! Congratulations to Brooke Bower (MID ’24), Ani Matzakos (BSID ’24), and Jessica Wilsey (MID ’24).

  • Instagram Post
    What 👏 a 👏 week! Congratulations students on a job well done and thank you to all of the faculty and reviewers who participated this week
    @utsoa

    What 👏 a 👏 week! Congratulations students on a job well done and thank you to all of the faculty and reviewers who participated this week

  • Instagram Post
    This weekend, @utsolarhorns heads to Golden, Colorado for the @doesolardecathlon design competition finals!
    @utsoa

    This weekend, @utsolarhorns heads to Golden, Colorado for the @doesolardecathlon design competition finals!