851-0252-03L  Cognition in Architecture - Designing Orientation and Navigation for Building Users

SemesterSpring Semester 2017
LecturersV. Schinazi, B. Emo Nax, T. Thrash
Periodicityevery semester recurring course
Language of instructionEnglish
CommentNumber of participants limited to 40

Particularly suitable for students of D-ARCH

Catalogue data

AbstractHow can Behavioral and Cognitive Science inform architecture? This project-oriented seminar investigates contributions of cognition to architectural design, with an emphasis on orientation & navigation in complex buildings and urban settings. This includes theories about spatial memory and decision-making as well as hands-on observation of behavior in real settings and virtual reality simulation.
ObjectiveTaking the perspectives of the building users (occupants and visitors) is vital for a human-centered design approach. Students will learn about relevant theory and methods in cognitive science and environmental psychology that can be used to address human cognitive and behavioral needs in built environments. The foundations of environmental psychology and human spatial cognition will be introduced. A focus of the seminar will be on how people perceive their surroundings, how they orient in a building, how they memorize the environment and how they find they way from A to B. Students will learn about a range of methods including real-world observation, virtual reality experiments, eye-tracking and behavior simulation in design. Students will reflect the roles of designers and other stakeholders with respect to human-centered design as well as an evidence-based design perspective. The seminar is geared towards a mix of students from architecture / planning, engineering, computer science and behavioral science as well as anybody interested in the relation between design and cognition. Architecture students can obtain course credit in Vertiefungsfach" or "Wahlfach".

Performance assessment

Performance assessment information (valid until the course unit is held again)
Performance assessment as a semester course
ECTS credits3 credits
ExaminersV. Schinazi, B. Emo Nax, T. Thrash
Typegraded semester performance
Language of examinationEnglish
RepetitionRepetition possible without re-enrolling for the course unit.

Learning materials

No public learning materials available.
Only public learning materials are listed.


851-0252-03 SCognition in Architecture - Designing Orientation and Navigation for Building Users2 hrs
Mon17-19IFW C 33 »
V. Schinazi, B. Emo Nax, T. Thrash


No information on groups available.


Places40 at the most
Waiting listuntil 12.02.2017

Offered in

Architecture MasterSociology / EconomyWInformation
Doctoral Department of Humanities, Social and Political SciencesDoctoral and Post-Doctoral CoursesWInformation
GESS Science in PerspectiveD-ARCHWInformation
GESS Science in PerspectivePsychology, PedagogicsWInformation