TEACHING BUILDING SERVICES LIKE A PIRATE
Authors: Law, Tim
To the ASA conference delegates, the importance of building environmental services is self-evident. However the experience of teaching this course to architectural students has been challenging both to the author and other lecturers. In 2006, Mark Luther described it being ‘often … categorised as “one of the least desirable courses’ in the curriculum of architecture and building.” ‘ After winning the Prime Minister’s Australian Teacher of the Year Award (2012), James Arvanitakis wrote an article entitled ‘Kill your Powerpoints and teach like a pirate’. Finding inspiration in his success, and using the ideas from David Burgess on his book ‘Teach like a Pirate’ the author shares some his ideas in bringing an unconventional teaching style to building services, like bringing in a fog machine to the lecture theatre to illustrate the importance of fire services, singing a rap with the students on sanitary and plumbing, and speed-dating with building professionals. The PIRATE system has been an invaluable way of approaching building services education, allowing the lecturer to connect with the students for an intensive course on high-rise structures and services in one semester, with weekly three hourly lectures to fourth year architecture students. The paper presents the ideas adopted and the feedback received from running this course this way for the first time.