A Review of Critical Training in Architectural Design

Document Type : Research Article


1 Department of Architecture, Khoy Branch, Islamic Azad University, Khoy , Iran.

2 Associate Professor, Faculty of Architecture, College of Fine Arts, University of Tehran, Iran.

3 M.A. in Architecture, Lecturer and Researcher of Architecture, Urmia, Iran.


Problem statement: Mental awareness depends on having “critical thinking”. This type of thinking emphasizes changing educational approaches in academic systems. Critical thinking requires the skills of analysis, inference, data evaluation, and inference. Components of “critical thinking” force learners to challenge their views, hypotheses, and designs. Hence, “critical thinking” is a cognitive skill. Based on such cognition, there is no absolute knowledge in the world. Education is beyond the transfer of theories, achievements, and scientific laws and the recall of facts. Therefore, this article scrutinizes, analyzes, and critiques the teaching of architectural design in Iran in terms of “critical thinking”.
Research objective: “Critical thinking” is subject to a change in perception of “learning” because learning is inherently associated with growth. In other words, the evolution of intellectual structures and the construction of meaning and concept is a complex and cognitive practice. Therefore, what is considered the weakness of “critical thinking” in architecture students is the weakness of the higher education system in planning architectural design education.
The current system of architectural education trains students to design what they have learned, and naturally, the product of this educational system does not develop cognitive thinking; they are just like robots that act on what is planned for them. Therefore, the approach to teaching architectural design should be shifted to critically oriented teaching based on “critical thinking".
Research method: This research is fundamental. However, its application in teaching architectural design is a matter of course and is considered descriptive-analytical research in terms of nature and method.
Conclusion: The absence of an accurate and comprehensive method in Iranian architectural education, if it has not hindered the development of architecture, has limited it. Paying attention to strategies of critical teaching in architecture, classifying, and identifying the correct ways of criticism in teaching architectural design can instill a sense of awareness and ability in architecture graduates. It can also contribute to an accurate and rich architectural design in the country. However, the effectiveness, strengths, and necessity of using critical thinking in architecture education require changes in the course topics.


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