College of Architecture and Planning

CAP Enhancement Initiatives

  1. Enhancement of the studio instructional model

    1.1.- Graduate Assistantships
    The studio instructional model depends greatly on peer-to-peer interaction. Graduate assistantships provide the means to attract talented students that enhance the quality of our studio peer-to-peer interaction. At the same time, graduate assistants directly enhance the learning experience of the undergraduate students they serve.  Each department is called to identify the number of full or part-time assistantships that best serves these two different forms of enhancement.  These graduate assistantships are additional to those provided by the office of the Associate Provost for Research and Dean of the Graduate School, or through contracts and grants.

    1.2.- External Reviewers
    In addition to peer-to-peer interaction and faculty instruction, the studio model depends on the significance of feedback provided by external reviewers. On a selective manner we need to be able to provide incentives that make possible the sustained participation of external reviewers in our design and planning reviews. These incentives may range in nature, from providing lunch before a 1:00 PM review, to the actual payment of stipends for high profile reviewers participating in final review week events.

    1.3- Studio Documentation
    One of the most difficult tasks of a studio instructor is to identify the potential of a new student and to communicate his/her expectations of performance.  Both tasks are substantially enhanced by the availability of documentation on the work done by the student in previous semesters and the work of more advanced students that they need to meet during the new semester.  This line of funding can promote the development of individual student portfolios, studio project publications, on-line archive of student work, and school studio productions. This line may also include the funding of publications by key student associations/groups.

    1.4.- Academic / Professional Interaction
    The studio instructional model in academia is directly related with the model used in the profession for delivering commercial services. Professional offices are also organized around studios or studio-like environments. This expenditure line will be directed towards the enhancement of opportunities for interaction between academic and professional practice. Typical opportunities for doing so are presented in the context of career fairs, internships, and the participation of our students in national or international competitions addressing professional competency.

    1.5- Design-Build / Fabrication Supplies and Equipment
    The studio instructional model is at fundamental level a prototyping environment. Drawings are a form of prototyping, but model-making (sometimes at full scale) are also extremely important in the teaching/learning process.  In many instances the cost of prototyping materials has limited explorations that by definition enhance the process. This line of expenditure can be used for funding explorations that present higher risks or higher costs than usual and promote an enhanced learn-by-doing environment in the studio, workshop, or construction site. 

    1.5.- Studio/Learning Environment
    The studio environment is a non-conventional learning environment that requires specialized spaces, layouts, furnishings, and equipment.  It is recognized that providing the kind of environment required for external accreditation of our programs is a university general fund responsibility. We also recognize that beyond such level of implementation there is substantial room for enhancement. This expenditure line may provide funding for the further enhancement of our studio environments.
  2. Enhancement of learning without borders

    2.1.- Visiting Scholars
    Due to our location, our students have limited exposure to specialized external expertise. In some cases intellectual diversity can be introduced over short periods of time (see 2.2 and 2.3), but in other cases when we are addressing build-up instructional processes that go from basic awareness to ability to perform we need to provide longer exposure to the source of enhancement. This line of expenditure will be limited to specialized studios and courses in areas not currently covered by our faculty.

    2.2.- Visiting Lecturers
    Visiting lectures will enhance the learning experience of our students by providing intellectual diversity.  Visiting lectures may be delivered in campus or may be delivered through technology mediation. In most cases visiting lectures will be targeted to specific classes or departments. College lectures, due to their multidisciplinary perspective are addressed under line 3.2.

    2.3.- Invited Workshops
    Visiting workshops will enhance the learning experience of our students by providing intellectual diversity beyond awareness and understanding levels.  Visiting workshops address the student’s ability to perform and therefore require a time structure that commonly exceeds the one provided for visiting lectures. In most cases visiting workshops will be targeted to specific classes or departments. College level workshops fall into the expenditure line of college multidisciplinary projects in 3.1.

    2.4.- Student Mobility
    Our college is distinctive through its commitment to the implementation of out-of-campus activities and programs.  This line of expenditure will help enhance student learning during field trips, field studies (typically associated to outreach projects), and study abroad programs. In addition to direct enhancement of the out-of-campus experience we will consider enhancing financial access to the experience as a means of maintaining the benefits of peer-to-peer interaction that our students enjoy in campus based activities.
  3. Enhancement of multidisciplinary integration

    3.1.-Multidisciplinary Projects
    In this expenditure line we include the funding of multidisciplinary project-centered activities such as workshops and studios.  Within this expenditure line we seek the opportunity to enhance the learning experience of our students in freshman studios (part of the CAP common First Year Program) and students in a potential multidisciplinary capstone studio later in their undergraduate programs.  This expenditure line will also address opportunities for enhancement funding for immersive learning projects.

    3.2.- College Lectures
    It is customary for design schools to maintain a rich program of visiting lectures.  Our current level of funding for such a program is extremely limited. This line of expenditure will allow us to enhance our annual program of visiting lectures and to publicize it accordingly.

    3.3.- College Gallery Exhibits
    It is customary for design schools to maintain a rich program of visiting exhibits.  Our current level of funding for such a program is extremely limited. This line of expenditure will allow us to enhance our annual program of visiting exhibits, produce our own exhibits, and to publicize it accordingly.
  4. Enhancement of the perpetual learner culture.

    4.1.- Faculty & Students Symposium
    The F&S Symposium combines many aspects of instructional enhancement.  In particular, our faculty gets to talk about their scholarship of teaching in front of their students, and by doing so our students ascertain how they are learning. Every year we explain that we profess the philosophy of pedagogical transparency as a form of learning enhancement. The F&S Symposium is instrumental in putting our students in the driving seat of their learning process.  This expenditure line can help fund the participation of students in the symposium lunch and the publication that documents both faculty and student contributions to the event.

    4.2.- Alumni Symposium
    The Alumni Symposium combines many aspects of instructional enhancement.  In particular, our alumni gets to present their scholarship of application (mainly professional practice) in front of our students, and by doing so our students learn more about current professional trends associated to their disciplines. This expenditure line may be in intersection with expenditure for visiting lectures (2.2), but beyond that it can also help fund the participation of students in the symposium lunch and the publication that documents alumni contributions to the event.
  5. Enhancement of strategic opportunities and fiscal responsibility.

    5.1.- Special Implementations
    A number of peer institutions have implemented important lines of enhancement based on the investment of substantial resources in seed implementations. If such an implementation is identified we would like to encumber funds through several years in order to jump-start such initiatives. This may be the case of large scale design-build projects that are introduced to the market and in turn provide the funding for the next implementation.
College of Architecture and Planning
Architecture Building (AB), Room 104
Ball State University
Muncie, IN 47306

Phone: 765-285-5859
Fax: 765-285-3726
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