How 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.
Taking 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 information (valid until the course unit is held again)