Teaching Theories of Urbanism

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This chapter introduces the theories of urbanism courses offered at the Urbanism Department in the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, TU Delft. Urbanism is a discipline which has a crucial impact on how humans interact with the built environment. Understanding its theories is important and will be increasingly so in the twenty-first century as the world’s population becomes ever more urban. This chapter begins with a brief introduction outlining its contents. Section two then asks the question What is urbanism? and answers it by looking at how cities developed before going on to describe the discipline of urbanism itself. Section three highlights three theories of urbanism courses run by the Urbanism Department, showcasing their teaching methods, and showing how they are targeted to students’ different levels. The course deliverables, which are essays, are also explained here, including how they are graded and the feedback given. Section 4 deals with the courses’ learning objectives, explaining both explicit and implicit ones: the former being about understanding theories of urbanism and demonstrating that understanding; the latter being about professionalism more generally, e.g. how to communicate, meet deadlines, and write academically correct English. Finally, a brief conclusion recapitulates the importance of urban theory in the twenty-first century.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTeaching, Learning and Researching Spatial Planning and Strategy
EditorsRoberto Rocco, Gregory Bracken, Caroline Newton, Marcin Dabrowski
Place of PublicationDelft
PublisherTU Delft Open
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9789463666046
ISBN (Print)978-94-6366-604-6
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • urbanism
  • theory
  • history
  • teaching
  • learning


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