Urban Environments

Subject ENVS10007 (2014)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2014.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 1 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2014.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 48 hours: 2 x 1 hour of lectures; 1 x 2 hours of tutorials.
Total Time Commitment:

120 hours

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support: http://services.unimelb.edu.au/disability


Melbourne School of Land & Environment Student Centre
Ground Floor, Land & Food Resources (building 142)

Phone: 13 MELB (13 6352)
Email: 13MELB@unimelb.edu.au

Subject Overview:

To understand why cities have become the most common living environment today, this subject will be built around three questions: what is ‘the urban' and why have cities formed and expanded?; how do we analyse the environments of contemporary cities?; and how might we create better urban futures? Looking to the past, special attention will be paid to cities of different times and places (the early Middle East, Industrial Revolution Europe and North America, rapidly urbanising contemporary China, for example). We will consider the cities' design, political and economic reasons for their development and form, and their dependence on local physical environments and resources. Analytically, approaches to city morphology, socio-economic differentiation and environmental auditing will be investigated and evaluated, linking these matters to contemporary globalisation. Student experience of different local urban environments within Melbourne will form the basis of some tutorial and assessment tasks, raising questions about how better urban outcomes could be planned for the future.

Learning Outcomes:

At the completion of this subject students should have developed the following skills:

  • observation of urban environments
  • recording and analysis of real world urban environments
  • evaluation of the influence of different factors on the urban environment
  • recognition of the variety of opinions on the way urban environments are shaped
  • ability to debate alternative approaches to improving the urban environment
  • One 1500-word fieldwork journal reporting observations of selected urban environments, Week 1- Week 6 (semester 1); Week 1- Week 8 (semester 2) - 30%
  • One 1500-word research essay, Week 7-Week 12 (semester 1); Week 9-Week 12 (semester 2) - 25%
  • Tutorial Participation, Week 1 - Week 12, 10%
  • One 2-hour end-of-semester examination, Exam period - 35%
Prescribed Texts:

Subject reader available from the university bookstore.

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

At the completion of this subject students should be able to:

  • observe and record historical, physical and social aspects of urban environments
  • engage in critical reading discussion
  • understand geographic and planning aspects of urban analysis
  • undertake library research
  • research for and write an academic essay
  • present an academic argument in written and spoken forms.
Links to further information: http://www.benvs.unimelb.edu.au/
Related Course(s): Bachelor of Environments
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Architecture major
Civil (Engineering) Systems major
Construction major
Environmental Engineering Systems major
Environmental Geographies, Politics and Cultures major
Environmental Science major
Environments Discipline subjects
Geography Major
Geomatics (Geomatic Engineering) major
Landscape Architecture major
Landscape Management major
Property major
Urban Design and Planning major
Related Breadth Track(s): The Property Industry
Natural systems and our designed world
Urban Design and Planning
Urban Planning

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