Studio Culture Policy

The Architecture Studio culture at CCA is an energetic and productive environment where student work is nurtured with both respect and critical attention.

The faculty, most of whom are practitioners, recognize architecture is a creative act and intimate personal investment.

Students are treated as collaborators in their own learning process and encouraged to develop the life-long behaviors of curiosity, rigorous thinking and making, measured self-discipline and engaged intellect.

These values, rather than a particular visual style of work or set of theoretical constructs, are what characterize the CCA studio environment.

Public Reviews

This attitude extends to public reviews of student work. We believe that the public presentation/discussion format of the review process continues to be an essential part of the educational process of an architect.

Our core values about this process are reflected in the fact that we call these discussions "reviews" rather than "juries."

We have worked hard over the years to create an environment for this process that is simultaneously critical and respectful. The balance we have achieved makes for a lively and engaged culture of reviews.

At its best, these conversations become animated debates about work and ideas where the student is both catalyst and participant.

The students should be able to rely on the fact that the public reviews of their work will be conducted in the above spirit. It is the job of the faculty to monitor the review to ensure that this in fact occurs.

The faculty is responsible to the trust CCA establishes with its students, and must intervene if discussion of the work of a student strays from productive to counterproductive.

Counterproductive reviewer behavior includes remarks that a reasonable person would construed as: belligerent or sarcastic; personal demeaning intelligence, student ability, personal appearance; or insulting, threatening or might be perceived as biased toward race, ethnicity, gender identifiation, or sexual orientation.

Studio Etiquette

Students are expected to work in the studio. This will immeasurably enrich the student's learning potential. If everyone is to work in the studio, certain etiquette is necessary to ensure a civil working environment.

The design studio should be a place where students make their thoughts part of a public discourse of peers and faculty. This can only happen if everyone listens, considers what is being said or proposed by everyone else, and then thoughtfully responds to what is put forward.

It also requires students to cogently and carefully put your own ideas forward for discussion. This tends to happen quite well on its own when each student works in the studio.

In addition, the values expressed in other sections of this Policy shall govern all student-to-student, faculty-to-student, student-to-faculty, and faculty-to-faculty discussions.

Students should be considerate of their classmates, and of others in the building. With studios as shared space, students should keep their personal workspace in reasonable order.

They should clean up after themselves after each session using common work-tables.

All students should use the booths when spray painting or mounting, and the plaster room when working with plaster. Headphones are required for all music. At the end of each semester, students are responsible for removing from the studios everything they have brought into the building.

Time Management

Architecture is a demanding curriculum. Students should develop time-management skills early on to make the best and most efficient use of time in the studio. By organizing course expectations, students should anticipate and plan for deadlines. Design work in particular seems to always need more time: it is never done.

In fact, it will expand to fill time available.

Students are urged to work with their faculty to learn to judge when work is substantially complete. CCA Architecture actively discourages staying up all night, as it is counterproductive to good design as well as unhealthy.

All faculty members are required to design their coursework loads to be reasonably completed.

Community Responsibilities

The Architecture Program constitutes a community within the larger community of CCA. Students and faculty all are part of both of these communities.

This means there is a mutual responsibility to create an environment of trust, respect, and comfort for all members of the community.

In addition, members of this community should not engage in disparaging behavior that undermines the integrity of the community or of individuals within it. Instead, complaints, concerns, and dissatisfaction of either students or faculty should be dealt with openly and with the appropriate administrative personnel.

General Inquiries:

Jared Elizares
Program Manager
Bachelor of Architecture
BFA in Interior Design

Postal Address
B.Arch Program
California College of the Arts
1111 Eighth Street
San Francisco CA 94107-2247

Architecture Staff
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