UCL News


Widening participation in architecture

14 March 2005

A new research project by UCL's Bartlett School of Architecture will investigate issues of widening participation in architectural education.

The two year study - jointly funded by the Bartlett and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) - will examine the selection processes of architecture schools and question who succeeds in architectural education and why.

With recent research from the RIBA and the Commission for Architecture & the Built Environment (CABE) highlighting poor minority representation in the architectural profession, the study will investigate a number of themes relating to access and success in architectural degree courses, such as the profile of applicants, their educational qualifications and backgrounds. Led by Ms Susan Ware and Mr Ben Campkin, the project will look at three cohorts of undergraduate Bartlett students, tracking them from their first year to the completion of their degree.

The researchers will also examine how decisions are made at interview and review relevant work in other professions, such as the introduction of standardised admissions tests.  Mr. Campkin said: "Architecture is still very much a privileged profession. This study will ask how diversity amongst applicants to architecture courses might be encouraged in the future."

In light of recent UK government targets to increase participation in higher education among 18 to 30 year olds to 50 per cent, and the increasing costs of education, Ms Ware said: "Applicants need to be able to make informed choices about whether or not they have the skills and qualities to succeed in architectural education. Increasing numbers of applicants and pressures on schools determine that more research into the selection process is necessary."

To find out more about the institute or the Bartlett use the links below.


Bartlett School of Architecture