I am Course Leader of BA Architecture in the Department of Architecture.
Before taking on a full-time role at Westminster I combined architectural practice with part-time teaching. I studied Architecture at Kingston Polytechnic and South Bank University before pursuing my interest in aesthetics through a Masters in Visual Theory at UEL.
Prior to qualification as an architect in 1995, I worked in Austria for Büro Giencke and in London for Gollifer Associates Architects. I then set up Shonfield Williams Architects in partnership with Katherine Shonfield which ran from 1996 to 2000, before working as a project architect with muf architecture/art from 2000 to 2010.
Whilst working in practice I had always taught part time in the field of architecture: In 2010 I took the decision to move into teaching full time at Westminster, initially as a design and history tutor, and then as Course Leader of BA Architecture in 2011.
My interest in the practice of teaching and learning in architecture had led to my involvement in the establishment of the AAE (Association of Architectural Educators) of which I am a committee member. The AAE is a group of UK academics interested in furthering the understanding of studio-based learning in architectural education. I have recently completed an MA in Higher Education at University of Westminster centred on researching the student experience of design studio culture.
RIBA member since 2002
ARB registered since 1995
MA Higher Education 2015 University of Westminster
MA Visual Theory 1996 University of East London
PG Dip Architecture 1993 South Bank University
BA (Hons) Architecture 1989 Kingston University
My current teaching at Westminster includes leading a Design Studio on the BA Architecture Course focussing on creative responses to the environmental impact of development. I lead a Dissertation group on the MArch (RIBA Part II) course, examining the nature creative practice in architecture and the visual arts. My role also includes the co-ordination and shaping of Design Studio provision across the Degree, and the future direction of the course in response to professional body policy. My own research into the pedagogy of design studio has informed this work. I have taught Design Studio at Kingston, Brighton, Oxford Brookes, London Met, and UEL, and Architectural History at the Bartlett.
My research focuses on the nature of practice through a number of strands: I am interested in the student experience of design studio culture, of how students learn to be architectural designers and how they are supported in this. The work has led to published research into the use of blended learning in supporting design studio.
Also informed by practice theory is a study of the development of the public housing estate between 1890 and 1951 through an examination of the professional practices and cultures of the land and valuation surveying profession. The research has focused on the activities of the LCC’s Housing and Valuations Department between 1945 and 1951 in promoting their ‘Out-County’ housing estates through the organisation of a ‘Tours of our Estates’ programme, run in conjunction with the British Council.
I am currently developing an analysis of the experience of LGBT professionals working on construction sites based existing survey data. This research has focussed on aspects of the site visit that involve parading and the contesting of established masculine cultures, particularly where collective bodies of workers are involved and linked with organisational hierarchies.
For details of all my research outputs, visit my WestminsterResearch profile.