Studying online

There are now 2 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

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Unit Overview


This unit engages with environmental systems and strategies for sustainability in architectural design and construction. It introduces students to environmental design principles and how these relate to global, regional, urban and site-specific contexts, architectural design, construction processes and outcomes. The unit focuses primarily on the relationship between environmental systems and design intent. Firstly, it contextualises environmental design from the global scale (global environmental challenges, energy and atmosphere) through regional and city scales (urban context, land use, water, ecology, waste and site planning) to the scale of building (materials, resources, health, energy and comfort). Secondly, the unit introduces principles of passive design and historical and emerging technologies associated with the response to environmental challenges. Topics for exploration and analysis may include urban contexts, site planning, energy, materials, water and waste.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 2UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 2 core unit in the Architecture A major sequence

Students are able to (1) develop a competent understanding of issues of environmental sustainability in relation to architectural design; (2) demonstrate a basic understanding of environmental design principles as they apply to architectural design and construction; (3) become more versed in the context and language of environmental design and building; (4) start anticipating the environmental consequences of what they design; and (5) competently complete set tasks, critically interpret, reflect and review information and clearly communicate results and findings.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) presentation; (2) case study report; and (3) analytical report. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Associate Professor Fernando Jerez
Unit rules
ARLA1030 Structures and Natural Systems
or ARCT1030 Structures and Natural Systems
Contact hours
lectures: 1 hour per week
seminars: 2 hours per week
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.