Final Project Assignment

Paper Length: 5-6 Pages (~1300-1500 words) + photos

Due Dates:
Dec. 4: One-paragraph topic summary posted on blog
Dec. 6: Annotated bibliography posted on blog
Dec. 11: First Draft due – bring to class
Dec. 18: Final Project Due

Related Class Notes: Class Notes – 12/11/12

See below for assignment details

This assignment has been designed to help you gain experience in writing in the various modes of architectural criticism we have been reading and practicing this semester . It is also meant to help you revise and synthesize previous writing you have done this semester, especially as you do additional research on your topic.

Learning Goals:

  • Learn to write in the various modes of architectural criticism we have explored this semester: formal, historical, experiential, activist;
  • Learn to research a topic and to incorporate sources into your writing;
  • Learn to use blogs to create engaging online posts;
  • learn to integrate images effectively into your prose;
  • learn to note similarities and differences between class readings and your own personal experiences;
  • learn to center each paragraph around a specific subject;
  • learn to start each paragraph with a topic sentence;
  • learn to use transition statements to move the reader from topic to topic;
  • learn to quote from and respond to our assigned readings;
  • learn to cite quotations parenthetically according to MLA format;
  • learn to write with clear, grammatically correct prose.


Write an essay, to be posted on our course blog, that presents a response to a single building, space, or structure in the four modes of architectural criticism that we have been exploring this semester: formal, historical, experiential, activist. The idea is to provide four snapshot views of a topic, each written from a different standpoint and with a different set of concerns that are in line with the four modes discussed above. We are also continuing to practice the skill of using written language to describe abstract ideas, textures, and structures.

Your essay can and should build upon previous writing you have done this semester, both in formal papers and on our blog. Although your essay can and should include bits and pieces of writing you have done earlier in the semester, the final essay you produce should be able to stand on its own as a unified piece of writing.


Introduction + thesis – give an overview of your paper/topic and present a thesis that your paper will attempt to prove

Four sections that present views of your chosen building/space

In place of a traditional conclusion, write a paragraph that points to larger questions or concerns brought up by your topic


  • Your essay must be a minimum of 1300 words.
  • You must include proper citation for any images you use
  • You must research your topic using library resources and incorporate at least two books, two primary sources, and one popular source such as a newspaper or magazine article, all to be cited according to MLA format
  • Your essay must end with a list of Works Cited formatted in accordance with MLA style.
  • Your essay must be posted on our OpenLab blog

Related Class Notes: Class Notes – 12/11/12

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