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Module Title
Sustainable Development

Ethics, community, resources, climate, bioregion, energy, ecology

SCQF Points15
ECTS Points7.5
CreatedMay 2009
ApprovedJune 2012
Version No.1

Prerequisites for Module

None in addition to course entry requirements.

Corequisite Modules


Precluded Modules


Aims of Module

To provide an overview and critical understanding of the issues and challenges involved in developing and enhancing the built environment with responsibility to the local and global environment, society and communities.

Learning Outcomes for Module

On completion of this module, students are expected to be able to:

1. Critically evaluate the principles and issues involved in the maintenence, development and design of the built environment, which is responsive to the needs of communities, society and the environment.
2. Critically evaluate people and environment responsible design in a holistic and integrated way.

Indicative Module Content

Introduction to the terms and concepts of sustainability.
A selection of factors affecting human settlement, climate, microclimate, topography, infrastructure. Buildings in time and place, urban and rural contexts. Human factors such as health, social interaction and comfort.
Resource and energy conservation, waste management, environmental and social impact.

Indicative Student Workload

Contact Hours

Full TimeDistance Learning


Directed Study



Private Study



Mode of Delivery

Module is taught via 2 modes:
Taught Mode (T) The module is delivered in taught mode by lectures, interactive workshops, case study tutorials and directed self-study.
Online Distance Learning mode (ODL), The delivery is based upon self-directed learning from web-based materials and backed by online workshops, moderated online chat sessions and case studies. Access to online support will be available.

Assessment Plan

Learning Outcomes Assessed
Component 1
Component 2 1,2

Module assessment will be recorded in two components. Component 1 will be formative in nature to provide students with a programme of developmental activities applied to module content as preparation for Component 2. This is weighted at 40% of the final grade.
Component 2 will be summative in nature; typically an individual piece of work. The component assesses all module learning outcomes and is weighted at 60% of the final grade.

Indicative Bibliography

1.ORR, D.W., 2002. The nature of design: ecology, culture, and human intention. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
2.PAPANEK, V., 1995. The green imperative. London: Thames & Hudson.
3.EOIN O.COFAIGH ET AL,1996 The Climatic Dwelling: James and James
4.PAOLA SASSI, 2006 Strategies for sustainable Architecture: Taylor and Francis.
5.AVI FRIEDMAN, 2007 Sustainable Residential Development McGraw Hill.
6.BORER & HARRIS, 2008 The whole house Book, Centre for Alternative Technology
7.BJORN BERGE, 2001 The ecology of Building Materials: Architectural Press.
8.ANDERSON J., SHIERS D.K, STEELE 4th 2009 The Green Guide to Specification: Wiley-Blackwell.
AMOS RAPOPORT, House Form and culture: Prentice Hall
MCHARG, I.L., 1969. Design with nature. New York: The American Museum of Natural History & Doubleday.


Robert Gordon University, Garthdee House, Aberdeen, AB10 7QB, Scotland, UK: a Scottish charity, registration No. SC013781