Urban Environments

Subject ENVS10007 (2016)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 1 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2016:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 29-Feb-2016 to 29-May-2016
Assessment Period End 24-Jun-2016
Last date to Self-Enrol 11-Mar-2016
Census Date 31-Mar-2016
Last date to Withdraw without fail 06-May-2016

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 25-Jul-2016 to 23-Oct-2016
Assessment Period End 18-Nov-2016
Last date to Self-Enrol 05-Aug-2016
Census Date 31-Aug-2016
Last date to Withdraw without fail 23-Sep-2016

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 48 hours: 2 x 1 hour of lectures; 1 x 2 hours of tutorials.
Total Time Commitment:

170 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


Assoc Prof Ian Rutherfurd, Dr David Nichols


Semester 1

Subject Coordinator email:
Senior Tutor:

Semester 2

Subject Coordinator email:
Senior Tutor:

The Eastern Precinct (building 138)
(between Doug McDonell building and Eastern Resource Centre)

Current Student: http://ask.unimelb.edu.au/
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 fieldwork journal reporting observations of selected urban environments, 600 words; Week 4 - 15%
  • One research essay including the report of observations of the selected urban environments, 1800 words; Week 7-Week 12 (semester 1), Week 9-Week 12 (semester 2) - 45%
  • Tutorial Participation, 400 words; Weekly - 10%
  • One 1.5-hour end-of-semester examination, 1200 words; Exam period - 30%
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: Civil (Engineering) Systems major
Environmental Engineering Systems major
Environmental Geographies, Politics and Cultures major
Environments Discipline subjects
Geomatics (Geomatic Engineering) major
Landscape Ecosystem Management 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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