What is an Architectural Thesis?

The final year architecture thesis plays an important role in determining the student interest and learning process. It is a time for students to illustrate the skills and information they’ve earned throughout their study and identify a current topic of interest that students want to investigate further. 

Projects and dissertations have always been viewed as an effective means of research training and of encouraging a discovery approach to learning … [they] are also seen as an effective means of (Mick Healey, 2013)

  • diversifying assessment;
  • addressing concern to promote skills and employability;
  • empowering the learner;
  • motivating students;
  • promoting links between teaching and research;
  • ‘talent spotting’, i.e identifying potential research students/assistants.
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Architecture Thesis Presentation_©Life of an Architect

The Architecture thesis intends to strengthen the student’s ability to recognize their own learning needs concerning their specific strengths and developing skills, which is supported through the bachelor’s program.

Students create an individually negotiated portfolio of work inspired by current debates in the performing arts, with a particular emphasis on preparing them for postgraduate work or professional work.

The student is an active learner in this situation, and the teacher serves as a facilitator. The entire semester is structured in such a way that the entire teaching technique is centred on the students. The student chooses the study topic, what he wants to work on, and how he will organize it. He makes all of the decisions. The teacher acts as a guide, assisting students in distinguishing between their sense of place and the real-world situation. The thesis project aids the student in comprehending the current market situation and how he can bring his ambition to realization. So, if he has someone who can take him through the entire voyage, he will realize the fundamental difference. As a result, mentors provide various services to students to make the student’s entire experience relevant.

The Role Of Student In Architectural Thesis.

In the architecture thesis, the student serves as a producer, and he has a considerable opportunity to demonstrate the skills and characteristics he has acquired throughout his 5-year architectural degree. In the thesis project, the student is always in a brainstorming mood as a producer he is always active towards his project. Therefore, this technique allows students to create theoretical understanding by reflecting on their activities, rather than merely “learning by doing.” 

When undergraduate students are actively involved in research, they are more likely to achieve the greatest depth of learning and knowledge, especially through various forms of inquiry-based learning. Because the student is so enthusiastic about this assignment, it is expected that he has some prior experience with it and will be able to do it without fear in the future.

Aside from field knowledge, the architecture thesis aids in the student’s understanding of their roles and duties in society. Architecture thesis teaches students that they must consider not only how comfortable the buildings are to use, but also how structurally sound they are, how useful they are to society, how important their project and significance are in the current context, and how the entire design affects the future of architecture. 

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Architecture Thesis Presentation_©cdn.rit.edu

The University of Lincoln has identified eight key features of the student as producer concept: (Mick Healey, 2013)

  • Discovery: Student as producer;
  • Technology in teaching: Digital scholarship;
  • Space and spatiality: Learning landscapes in higher education;
  • Assessment: Active learners in communities of practice;
  • Research and evaluation: Scholarship of teaching and learning;
  • Student voice: Diversity, difference, and dissensus;
  • Support for research-based learning through expert engagement with information resources;
  • Creating the future: Employability, enterprise, beyond employability, postgraduate

Finally, the student plays a variety of roles in the project; he is not just a researcher, but also a designer, a socialist, and a visionary for the future. The architectural thesis aids the student in determining his area of interest and how to utilize it.

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Developing the narrative_©hartford.edu/

The Role OF teachers in Architectural Thesis.

The architectural thesis exposes a student’s imaginary world, where they imagine developing numerous components of their project. In this fictional world, they seem to forget about the project’s genuine purpose, which is reminded to them by their guides at each level of the review. Teachers play an important part in the development of an architectural thesis since they correct students’ mistakes and provide them with a path ahead.

The teacher’s function in an architecture thesis is that of a facilitator. The teacher’s role is to teach, guide, and assist the student’s professional development and learning, as well as to serve as a positive influence.

During thesis projects, the teacher’s responsibility is (Office for Alumni Affairs & Career Advancement, Harvard, 2015)

  • To identify the skills, knowledge, and/or goals that students want to achieve 
  • The teacher tells their students how they should proceed toward their area of interest.
  • They collaborate with their students to establish goals, developmental activities, and timelines.
  • Bring up new topics that are important to students at any point in work
  • Give feedback to the students about their progress
  • They listen to the thoughts of their students actively 
  • They serve as a positive role model for their students
  • They help their student to set their educational/career goals 
  • They encourage building self-confidence and self-esteem in their students
  • They offer their students constructive and meaningful advice and feedback 
  • They help the student to recognize the positive and negative factors of their projects. 
  • They Act as a resource for information 
  • They Educate their student on workplace expectations.
  • Teachers create and manage a teaching action plan, for their students to complete the work on time 

In brief, during thesis projects, the teacher takes on a variety of tasks that have a significant impact on the student’s professional ambitions.

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Student  Teacher Discussion_©Archdaily

The Role of Relationships between Students and Teachers in Architectural Thesis.

The student-teacher relationship is extremely important in an architecture thesis since the student is the one who is almost certain to take his first moves into the professional world, while the instructor is the one who has already done so. A successful working relationship promotes genuine enthusiasm for the field and enables learners to join the industry.

The architecture profession is enormous in scope, and understanding the student’s point of interest, or creating it positively, is entirely dependent on student-teacher interaction. A student’s ability to work on the project is boosted by an engaging teacher who delivers positive and negative feedback on the assignment in a pleasant manner. The engaged and receptive students encourage the teacher to provide more feedback on the project. These interactions between students and teachers during the project contribute to a favourable project outcome, whereas less responsive teachers or students, or both, lead to a lack of confidence among students, which leads to a poor project outcome.

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Healthy Student-Teacher Relationship_©ChicagoParent

The major goal of the thesis project is to teach students about numerous things to perform in a typical architectural project, rather than to complete any one project to a bachelor’s degree. Completing a project is not the only beneficial thing when it comes to a project done by a student’s full dedication, which can only be attained by a dedicated instructor, and this dedication can only come after a healthy relationship between them.

Features of the student-teacher relationship during the thesis project 

  • Regular interaction between teacher and students 
  • The teacher should be informed about the process 
  • Students can communicate with their teachers whenever they are stuck 
  • The project is completed on time 
  • The teacher should be aware of their student’s mental state during the project 
  • There should be two-way communication 
  • Both the student and the teacher should be active listeners 
  • There should be mutual respect’s timelines
  • Both of them must agree on the project’s outcome. 
  • The student must understand why the changes were made so that they can easily connect.

In brief, for a successful project, there must be a positive relationship between the teacher and the student, which can be developed through cooperation during the thesis period.

Phases of mentoring relationship_©Togetherplatform


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Available at: https://matterapp.com/blog/mentor-and-mentee-roles-responsibilities-and-relationships
[Accessed 10 12 2021].

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Li, W., 2018. A Research on Undergraduate Architecture Teaching Approach Based on Integration of Architectural Design and Architectural History Teaching. Creative Education, 9(12), p. 9.

Melor Md Yunusa, W. S. W. O. N. M. I., 2011. Teacher-student relationship factor affecting motivation and academic achievement in ESL classroom. Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences, 15(1), p. 5.

Mick Healey, A. S. J. D. L. L., 2013. Developing and enhancing undergraduate final-year projects and dissertations A National Teaching Fellowship Scheme project publication, Gloucestershire, England: Higher Education Academy.

Office for Alumni Affairs & Career Advancement, Harvard th chan, 2015. The Mentor – Mentee Relationship, BOSTON: Harvard TH. CHAN.

Shannon N. Davis, R. M. J., 2020. The Genesis, Evolution, and Influence of Undergraduate Research Mentoring Relationships. International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching & Learning, 14(1), p. 9.


Architect Neha Bhardwaj has a master's degree in architecture pedagogy. She loves to teach architecture and works hard to make it understandable for her students. Along with architecture, she enjoys writing about her feelings and views poetry as a form of architecture or vice versa.