This PSCU course presented by Dan Searight went into the design process as well as charrette techniques for architects at Parkhill, Smith & Cooper.

“The class was originally titled Design Process Framework and Charrette Techniques. So when I flashed the new title, The Charrette: Barn Raising for Architects, I got a few raised eyebrows,” class instructor and PSC architect Dan Searight said. “Compare a charette to Amish barn raising? When you break it down, the two are not so dissimilar.”

After a short slide show, attendees were broken up into four teams with five or six to each group and then handed a design problem. The problem was addressed in mini charrette exercises. Working with a mock client, the teams solved the problem and then re-presented their solutions to the mock client. Responsibilities were assumed quickly and every group finished with a solution to the problem.  

“I saw each group dive in with rigor and urgency, engaged and talking to one another,” Searight said. “Some members asked question while others drew.”

An additional goal of the class was to explore and utilize free-hand sketching and quick presentation methods.

Added Searight: “I hope and feel the class experienced the importance and satisfaction of rigorous team work and problem solving skills needed to achieve exceptional design solutions.”

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