International Journal of Art & Design Education

Crits - An Examination

Volume 15.2   1996



Architectural design education relies upon a practice known in Britain as the 'crit' through which to discuss student's work. The author, who studied as an architect and now teaches design to architecture students, describes the history of this institution and the ways in which its use has changed in the last 150 years. She uses the context of a British school of architecture and both contemporary and earlier research examples to support the hypothesis that these changes have contributed to the current atmosphere of doubt in which the crit is held. Central to her argument is the unresolved connection between formative and summative assessment occasions brought about by an apparently unavoidable association between the work of students and the students themselves. The paper supports the call for a review of architectural education methods, whilst stressing that the nature and flaws of the existing process must first be recognised.