2023-2024 / ARCH1106-1

Technology of the built environment 1 - Basic principles


40h Th

Number of credits

 Bachelor in architecture5 crédits 


Guirec Ruellan

Language(s) of instruction

French language

Organisation and examination

Teaching in the first semester, review in January


Schedule online

Units courses prerequisite and corequisite

Prerequisite or corequisite units are presented within each program

Learning unit contents

Course description :

The Building Technology course is a generalist, introductory approach to the technical principles involved in developing an architectural project and turning it into a functional building. The general idea behind the course is to offer students a first look at all these technical principles, which will be covered in greater detail in subsequent courses.

Aims/reasons for choice of content :

In terms of form, the course develops through the analogy between the physiological functioning of the human body and the physical-technical-architectural functioning of a building. Numerous analogies are used to illustrate the course and make it easier for students to understand new principles.

Table of contents:

Environment and built form: Introduction to environmental issues and the impact of the construction sector / Context and built form / Notions of comfort / Formal relationship to the ground

Structures and forces: Structural relationship to the ground / Foundations / Infrastructure / Superstructure / Elementary structures / Classification / Architecture and structure / Balances / External loads / Internal forces / Load reduction

Insulation and heating: General thermal principles / Thermal insulation / Principle of constructive nodes and continuity / Notions of bioclimatism / Heating systems

Sealing and ventilation: Watertightness / Airtightness / Water vapor management / Ventilation systems

Other systems: Notions of water supply and drainage / Notions of acoustics / Notions of electricity / Notions of fire resistance and safety / Special elements (staircases, frames)


The course focuses on the following cross-cutting themes that are essential to the training of future architects: sustainability: sustainable development, sustainable city, territory, global warming, environmental footprint...

Learning outcomes of the learning unit

At the end of the course, students will be able to :

  • Perceive the multiplicity of roles assumed by architecture.
  • Understand the role of technology in enabling architecture to fulfill these roles.
  • Perceive the interactions between architecture, building technology and building physics.
  • Interpret the way a building's structure works, based on the graphic documents presenting it.
  • Begin to integrate structural thinking into the development of an architectural project.
    read technical details and understand the role of different materials.
  • Begin to think about the composition of walls when drawing up an architectural project.
  • Understand the main technical networks supplying a building.
  • Understand some of the building sector's impact on the environment, and the tools used to assess this impact.
As a whole, the teaching unit enables students to develop the competencies set out in the Faculty's reference framework, and more specifically, the following competencies:

  • Study the various components of the theme and context (historical, landscape, built environment, cultural, social, economic, legal, technological, etc.).
  • Integrate structural, technical, material and energy resources and constraints
  • Include environmental, landscape, cultural and socio-political values
  • Draw on local resources (materials, energy sources, etc.)
  • Take into account the site's climatic and geographical factors
  • Adapt structural, technical and material choices in line with the project's principles and values
  • Experiment with feasibility, implementation, layout and assembly methods, and construction processes (architectural, etc.) as design parameters.
  • "Interact with all stakeholders"
  • Master verbal, written and graphic languages as tools for sharing ideas

Prerequisite knowledge and skills

There are no prerequisite skills or knowledge.

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

The entire course will be given as an ex cathedra presentation.

Regular interaction will take place, enabling all students to answer a question during the course prior to the presentation of a new aspect of Building Technology.

At the same time, students will be given regular exercises to help them apply the concepts studied to their own concrete experience.

The course includes the following learning activities:

  • Lectures
  • Exercise sessions 
The teaching methods used are as follows:

  • Lecture and interactive teaching
Additional explanations:

Interaction with the teacher takes place :

  • In class
  • Outside class sessions (by e-mail or eCampus forum)
  • After class sessions
Devices/supports :

  • Notes/course outline available on eCampus
  • Projected materials
  • Other digital media used: Unicast recording

Mode of delivery (face to face, distance learning, hybrid learning)

Blended learning

Additional information:

The teaching method is as follows: Sessions are organized around a combination of face-to-face and distance learning activities.

Supervision: Students are supervised by a single teacher.

Recommended or required readings

The presentation slides are provided at each class session, at least one hour before the start of the session. They are posted on e-campus.
Each session will be available as a podcast on Unicast (subject to any technical problems that may be encountered during the course, preventing its proper recording).


Books for optional consultation available in the university libraries:

Ching, F. (2015). Architecture?: form, space, & order

Provost, M., Attas, D., & De Kemmeter, P. (2011). Comment tout ça tient???: voyage au pays des structures

Ching, F. (2014). Building construction illustrated

Neufert, E., et al. (2014). Neufert?: les éléments des projets de construction

Bouteveille, U. (2013). La construction, comment ça marche???: toutes les techniques de construction en images

Exam(s) in session

Any session

- In-person

written exam ( multiple-choice questionnaire )

Other : Mandatory exercises

Additional information:

Types of assessments

The course includes assessments:

  • Certificative
  • Formative: diagnostic assessments with a view to correction and improvement.
Assessments can take several forms, which can be combined.

Assessments are as follows:

  • Continuous assessment exercises
  • In-session examination: multiple-choice questions on implicit solutions (QCM SGI)
  • Second-session examination: multiple-choice questions on implicit solutions (QCM SGI)
Composition and weighting of assessments

The overall grade for the course is awarded: Through several assessments

The weighting of assessments is as follows

  • Continuous assessment - Maximum penalty of -40%.
  • In-session examination - 100%.

Expectations and assessment criteria

Assessment n°1 : In-session examination

The expectations are as follows: Multiple Choice Questionnaire with Implicit General Solutions (QCM SGI)

The evaluation criteria are as follows: Understanding of concepts and learning of definitions seen in class.

Evaluation is carried out: Individually

Distribution of individual and/or group marks: 100% individual mark

Special note on access to assessment: Assessments are carried out on FormulOMs. Feedback will be sent to each student by the Uliège SMART service.

Media available for assessment: Closed notebook

Additional explanations: The assessment will be based entirely on MCQs at the January, June and September sessions.


Assessment n°2 : Continuous assessment

The following is expected: Carry out simple exercises to put concepts seen in class back into context.

The assessment criteria are as follows: Turn in work representing a minimum investment within the allotted time.

Evaluation is carried out: Individually

Individual and/or group grading: 100% individual grading

Special note concerning access to the assessment: The assessment is accessible on eCampus.

Materials available for assessment: Open notebook and any other materials (people or resources).

Submission and delivery

Work is : Submitted on eCampus

Handed in: Outside sessions (on a date(s) set by the teacher).

Additional explanations :

Exercises are required to apply or deepen concepts seen in class. These exercises are not graded, but are debriefed in class. Failure to hand in an exercise on time (unless a valid excuse is given), or handing in an exercise that is visibly incomplete, may result in a loss of 1 point on the final grade. Upon request to the teacher, this exercise may be resubmitted in a second session to cancel the penalty.

Any plagiarism of work produced by another person may be sanctioned, up to and including exclusion from the examination section.

Work placement(s)

Organisational remarks and main changes to the course

Any questions regarding the course can be submitted to the teacher:

  • at the end of the course.
  • by mail.
  • on the e-campus forum of the course.
If no questions are asked, the concepts covered are considered understood.



Association of one or more MOOCs