The Bartlett


Get your head stuck into these 5 books this year!

By Azmina Gulamhusein

The course leaders at The Bartlett provide students with ample suggestions for reading material to compliment the teaching and learning of the course. However, it is also beneficial to read outside the allocated course material. This not only broadens your knowledge, but research has suggested that reading provides other significant wellbeing benefits.

A student sits on campus reading a book with a Bartlett 100 campaign tote bag and reusable water bottle next to them

Some of the scientifically proven benefits of reading include:

Improved brain function and connectivity

Predictably, someone who spends some time reading daily, advances at it over time. Therefore, by regularly reading for leisure, one can improve their memory and critical thinking skills, which can be advantageous when it comes to tackling university assignments.  

Stress reduction

Stress is inevitable in today’s lifestyle. It is possible that reading could reduce stress more than walking, listening to music or playing games. This is because, when reading a really captivating book, people actively engage their imagination, which consequently temporarily distracts them from daily stresses.

Preparation for a good night of rest

It is commonly known that the blue light emitted by smart phones, tablets and screens keeps people awake at night and hence prevents them from getting a good night’s sleep. Many doctors have suggested that reading as part of a pre-bedtime routine will allow muscles to relax and slows down one’s breathing, leaving one feeling calmer. This subsequently enables very good sleep quality.

Improved state of mind 

Those who read more often are inclined to be more empathetic and have higher self-esteem. Fiction books allow people to momentarily escape from their own world and be swept up in the imaginary world of the characters. In contrast, non-fiction books, can improve knowledge and teach people strategies to improve well-being.

Promotes longevity

A number of studies have indicated that those who read books regularly tend to have live longer than those who didn’t read.

My top 5 recommendations

Best For Aspiring Architects

101 Things I Learnt in Architecture School by Matthew Frederick

This book contains 101 concise lessons in design, drawing, the creative process, and presentation-perfect for those beginning their architectural education.

Book cover: 101 things I learnt in Architecture School

Best for the Design-Passionate

A Designer’s Art by Paul Rand

Paul Rand is an American art director and graphic designer, renowned for his log designs for large corporations such as IBM and UPS. This book comprises of 27 essays in which Rand explores the process of graphic design.

Book cover: A Designer's Art

Best for Successful Networking  

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

This book provides the foundation for building a valuable network. It helps the reader understand people and their motives and encourages the reader to improve their listening and communication skills. Developing successful relationships is the key to success in all areas of life, and this book will support that. 

How to win friends and influence people

Best For the Ambitious Leaders

Start With Why  by Simon Sinek

This book challenges the reader to discover the power of WHY and how it can change their life. The book demonstrates that the most successful and influential leaders in the world all think, act and communicate in the same way. Sinek terms this idea The Golden Circle and it delivers a framework to build organisations, lead movements and inspire people.

Book cover: Start with why

Best For the Project Management Strategies

Project Management for Engineering and Construction by Garold Oberlender

Oblerlander explains from his experience of working with many project managers, helping them achieve success. The book covers project quality, parametric estimating and the importance of accurate estimates, and the phases of construction. It also reviews the risk management and construction management skills.

About the author

Azmina is currently studying Construction Economics and Management MSc at The Bartlett. With a background in architecture, she enjoys exploring the architectural diversity around London. On her weekends, Azmina enjoys a long run or bike ride to take in the sites of London.

Student in the woods