Revealing the Academy

Exploring the Relationships and Agency Between School, Teacher and Student in an Architectural Education


  • Sally Stewart Glasgow School of Art




communities of practice, mentor, tyro


In what ways and to what extent can the individual shape the institution and thereby the architectural education it provides? How does this manifest itself in the formation and experience of the student on their journey towards establishing their own personal creative practice and agency?

This paper attempts to explore the three-way relationship between school, teacher and student, with the aim of exposing the constant dynamic and flux as each acts on and is responsive to the others, while all aim to achieve a coherent and synthesised architectural education and entry to architectural practice. In this, the impact and agency of communities of practice are considers in counterpoint the charismatic individual.

The paper also discusses the methods used to unearth aspects of our relationship between teacher and student, mentor and tyro, proto and mature practitioner, not as a set of dualities but as spectrum where the individual’s position, behaviours and dependences shift and change over time as they continue on a bespoke trajectory, more often a series of loops and knots than a straight line.

How to Cite

Stewart, S. (2019). Revealing the Academy: Exploring the Relationships and Agency Between School, Teacher and Student in an Architectural Education. EAAE Annual Conference Proceedings, 174–177.



Author Biography

Sally Stewart, Glasgow School of Art

Sally Stewart is an architect and educator. She is Head of the Mackintosh School of Architecture, having been the Deputy Head since 2011, having previously been filled the posts of Head of Undergraduate Studies and Post Graduate Programme Leader. She was educated at the Mackintosh School graduating with a Master of Architecture in 1986. She was awarded a Readership by the University of Glasgow in 2014, and a Professorship in Architectural Education and Practice in June 2018. She has been active in the research into and design of environments for the elderly, designing for dementia and inclusive environments, the pedagogy of the architectural studio and creative practice research. Her recent research work considers the nature of personal practice and how that can be revealed, examined and enhanced. She still considers herself to be a student of architecture.