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Architecture is a demanding discipline with multiple, complex concerns and identities shaping the profession. The discipline requires analysis of complex and multifaceted issues and synthesizing broad knowledge through a focused creative process. While twenty-first-century education may leverage many sources to educate students of architecture, texts remain the primary repository par excellence of the rich and diverse body of knowledge and ideas that continue to inspire and ground architects, theorists, historians, planners, and policy makers tied to the discipline. Perusing and engaging with the diverse body of architectural literature is a strong approach to support one’s learning to think, speak, and write in the discipline with a high level of fluency and expertise. Yet reading, the foundational skill that provides access to the literature is often overlooked in the development of curriculum and the pedagogy of architectural education. This chapter explores in detail the challenges that inhibit student reading and reading effectiveness followed by strategies for building student reading skills in architectural education to support increased disciplinary literacy. Central to the strategies discussed is increased integration of text-based learning and explicit foregrounding of reading and study tools to support students’ learning through text. Key learning principles that serve a foundational role in text-based learning are analyzed to underpin the strategies discussed. Finally, two case studies are provided that exemplify the integration of these strategies that support increased disciplinary literacy in architectural education.


Originally published as Montgomery J.A. (2020) Teaching a Broad Discipline: The Critical Role of Text-Based Learning to Building Disciplinary Literacy in Architectural Education. In: But J. (eds) Teaching College-Level Disciplinary Literacy. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham

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