Free Online Architecture Classes Seniors Can Take

Are you fascinated with structure, shape, design, and would like to learn how things are built from the ground up in the physical or virtual computer world? Are you a senior citizen with lots of free time, looking for something educational and practical to pursue?

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If so, then taking a free, online architecture class is a fantastic choice. Better yet, many of them are short term, the start dates are flexible and they are self-paced, which means you can complete them in your own time and schedule. Most of these free online courses come with a certificate or diploma after completion, but that requires a fee to obtain. Some charge a minimum fee, others are pricier. However, going on the free online route saves you a huge amount of money, time and energy in comparison to studying at a college or university.

What is Architecture And Why Is It Practical To Study?

In essence, architecture is the art and technique of designing and building, and possesses some of the skills associated with successful construction. There are various kinds and subtypes of architecture as well. The profession of architecture is called upon to fulfill both practical and expressive requirements, thus it serves both utilitarian and aesthetic needs. Although these two goals may be distinguished, they cannot be separated, because both aspects are vital for an architecturally safe and successful building. Plus, the relative weight and relevance given to each can vary widely.

Every society—settled or nomadic—has a spatial relationship to the natural world and to other societies around them. The structures they build reveal much about their environment (including climate and weather), history, ceremonies, artistic sensibility, as well as many aspects of their daily life.

The characteristics that distinguish a work of architecture from other built structures are:

1. The suitability of the work for human beings in general and the adaptability of it to particular human activities.
2. The stability and permanence of the work’s construction.
3. The communication of experience and ideas through its form.

All the aforementioned conditions must be met in architecture. The second condition is a constant, while the first and third vary in relative importance according to the social function of buildings. For instance, if the function is chiefly utilitarian, as in a factory, communication is of less importance.

Architecture is a very useful skill to have, whether you’re of working age or retired. The greatest benefit of being a professional architect is that, if you wish to, you will be able to build any kind of computer software or structure on your own, such as a house or a boat. Following is a list of some great free online classes in various types of architecture that you can start today.

Software Architecture- University Of Alberta

The arrangement of software components — subroutines, classes, functions, etc. — and the interactions between them, is called software architecture.
In this online course you will study the ways these architectures are represented, both in UML and other visual tools. You will be introduced to the most common architectures, their qualities, and tradeoffs. You will learn how architectures are evaluated, what makes a good architect, and how an architecture can be improved. You will also see how the architecture touches on the process of software development.

Certificate: Available for a fee after course completion.
Average Duration: Approx. 4 weeks.

Making Architecture- Coursera

Making architecture offers a unique insight into the mind and work of an Architect, starting with the basics of the profession and culminating with the production of a scaled site model.

This online course is ideal preparation for those interested in undertaking an undergraduate degree in Architecture.
Thanks to its flexible, intriguing and enjoyable content, this is also an excellent choice for all those merely looking to increase their knowledge in the field.

Certificate: Available for a fee after course completion.
Average Duration: Approx. 4 weeks.

Japanese Architecture and Structural Design- Tokyo Institute of Technology

If you’re into architecture and its history from different countries, this course from Japan has it all. In this revised course, in depth video lectures cover various concepts related to architecture, and structural design are presented and accompanied by detailed articles for further study. Modern approaches to seismic design and retrofit will be covered through case studies of some unique campus buildings in Tokyo.

The course starts by introducing the progression of structural design from traditional timber buildings to the first steel high rise structures, then the metabolism movement and the evolution of modern spatial structures in Japan.

Certificate: costs $59.00 to obtain after course completion.
Average Duration: Approx. 5 weeks.

Zero-Energy Design – Delft University of Technology

Reduction of energy consumption of buildings is an important step in the pursuit towards a sustainable economy. How can buildings be made net zero energy in different climates?

This course introduces you to “zero energy” design. It will teach you a stepped approach to design a zero-energy climate concept for existing buildings: homes, schools, offices, shops etc. It will demonstrate how an integrated approach, which considers both passive measures (such as thermal insulation and sun shading) and active measures (such as heat pumps and photovoltaic panels), can deliver the best results.

Certificate: Costs $139.00 to obtain after course completion
Average Duration: Approx. 7 weeks.

Final Thoughts

Unless you’re in the middle of a desert or an ocean, you will always find some form of architecture all around you, everywhere you go. So even if you have no intention of building anything, it’s still a cool and fascinating subject to add to your array of knowledge.

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