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Distance Education · Visual and Performing Arts · Architecture - ARCH

Architectural History I

  • Summer I 2018
  • Section N01 CRN-30276
  • 3 Credits
  • 06/04/2018 to 07/02/2018
  • Modified 05/30/2018

Meeting Times

Online: Summer Session I

This course is an online format and uses eCampus as its mode of delivery.   Attendance is taken based on quiz and discussion board posts. Students are allowed to miss one week of course activities (four graded items) before being administratively dropped.

All learning is examined through participation activities, quizzes and tests. See course schedule below for more detail.


Contact Information

Email: [email protected]
Office: Health 266
Phone: 979-209-7305
Text: (979) 739-5229

Dr. Sylvester received a bachelor of architecture degree from the University of Louisiana in Lafayette, a master of architecture degree from the University of Houston, and doctor of philosophy degree at Texas A&M University. Likewise, Dr. Sylvester has spent 23 years in higher education and practice as a professor, administrator and design/build professional.


Study of the history of architecture from the ancient civilizations to the present. Emphasis on the relationship of culture, geography, climate, natural resources, and materials to the methods of construction. (ACGM)

3 lecture hours per week; 48 total contact hours. Credit: 3 semester hours.

Core Curriculum Statement

Through the Texas Core Curriculum, students will gain a foundation of knowledge in human cultures and the physical and natural world, develop principles of personal and social responsibility for living in a diverse world, and advance intellectual and practical skills that are essential for all learning. For details relating to this core course, please see:


Outline the historical, industrial, social, political, and economic influences upon the evolution and development of architecture, interiors, and furniture design

Outline the various eras of historical architecture, interiors, and furniture design

Visually recognize architectural landmarks

Identify individual characteristics and structural details (including architectural design graphics and illustrations) of historical architecture, interiors, and furniture

Apply critical thinking and analysis to architectural theory


Buildings Across Time

  • Author: Fazio
  • Publisher: MCG
  • Edition: 4th
  • ISBN: 9780073379296


eCampus is required for this course and is provide by Blinn College. eCampus is a web-based learning system and electronic community center for students and is used to supplement this course in the following areas:

  • Student and faculty collaboration
  • Course communication via discussion board and email
  • Quiz, Tests and Survey Feedback
  • Access to supplemental teaching and learning resources
  • Submission of all course materials

Visit eCampus regularly. It is highly recommended that you setup automatic notifications and that you visit the help desk for eCampus training as necessary. For assistance, please contact the Distance Learning HelpDesk using the information below.

  • Phone: (979) 209-7298
  • Location: Modular Building 2 Rm# 208
  • Visit the website to complete an online help form.
  • Availability: Internet
  • Price: Provided by Blinn Campus

Student Drafting Kit

Each student will need 1) a model cutting knife, 2) a sheet of poster board, 3) pencils, and 4) a student drafting kit. The Westcott C-Thru Student Drafting Kit  is recommended.


Course Requirements


Participation category consists of 8 discussion board activities and an architectural project. The discussion board activities support the lectures and course content. The project is building model of a roman temple.


Quiz Category consists of 8 chapter quizzes given throughout the course over lecture material, readings in the book, and internet / library research.


Test category consist of 3 exams. Test 1 examines chapters 1-4. Test 2 examines chapters 5 - 8. A comprehensive final exam on buildings and their identification is given during final exam week.



Types of evaluations and related weights
Type Weight Topic Notes
Participation 10%

Two major participation categories exists. They are discussion board activities and an architectural project. They are equally weighted

Quizzes 40%

8 quizzes are given throughout the course and are equally weighted within the category.

Tests 50%

Three tests are given. Test 1 is given at mid course, Test 2 is given at the end of the course; and the final exam is given on final exam day ( defined by Blinn College).


A (100 - 90%)  
B ( 89 - 80%)  
C ( 79 - 70%)  
D ( 69 - 60%)  
F ( < 60%)

Blinn College Policies

All policies, guidelines, and procedures in the Blinn College CatalogBlinn College Board Policies, and the Blinn College Administrative Procedures Manual are applicable to this course.

Specific information on civility, attendance, add/drop, scholastic integrity, students with disabilities, final grade appeal, alternative retailers, campus carry and proctoring arrangements and cost.

Notice of any action taken under these protocol and procedures, by Blinn College or its employees, may be delivered by hand, through the U.S. Postal Service, or electronically to the student’s BlinnBuc e-mail account. Notice shall be deemed received upon actual receipt, on deposit in the U.S. Mail, or upon entering the information processing system used by Blinn College for BlinnBuc e-mail accounts, whichever first occurs.

Course Policies

Course Agreement

The Course Agreement must be completed at the beginning of the course and is required to continuewithin the course. Completion of this agreeement is verification that you have the minimum skills to complete this course. Likewise, your completion of this agreement constitutes that your understanding the syllabus and course requirements.

Failure to complete the course agreement constitutes that you do not have the minimum skills to engage this course and that you do not understand nor accept the course requirements. In the latter case, an immediate meeting with Dr. Sylvester is required. Other Blinn officials are included as necessary.

Email Communication

General course questions will be answered promptly at anytime. Any and all student requests must be submitted via email and does not constitute agreement or disagreement by Dr. Sylvester. Emails must contain direct and succinct questions, otherwise additional information or clarification may be requested.

Student Work

Any and all student work must be submitted via eCampus. Work not submitted via eCampus is a zero grade. Dr. Sylvester may request use of student work for display at Blinn College functions and will be asked to complete the Blinn College art release form.


The Schedule of Continuity presents the byweekly sequencing for all activities. For clarity, Week 1-A represents activities scheduled for completion Monday - Wednesday. Week 1B represents activities schedule for completion Thursday - Saturday. All discussion posts and quizzes available and close at 11pm on Wednesday or Saturday respectively. The architectural project is due by the end of the semester (Week 4). See the eCampus course site for a calenday of activities with specific dates, times and project descriptions.

Course calendar and related activities
When Topic Notes
Week 1 - A
Ch. 1: The Beginning of Architecture

Course Orientation: Complete Course Agreement

Ch 1. Lecture(s):The Beginning of Architecture

Reading(s): pp. 9 - 33

  • Prehistoric Settlements and Megalith Constructions 10
  • Ancient Mesopotamia 14
  • Sumerians, Akkadians, and Neo-Sumerians 14
  • Babylonians, Hittites, and Assyrians 18
  • The Persians 19
  • Ancient Egypt 20

Assignment: Discussion Post

Quiz(s): Complete Quiz 1

Contact Hours: 6

Week 1 - B
The Greek World

Ch. 2 Lecture(s): The Greek World

Reading(s): pp. 35 -62

  • The Aegean Cultures 35
  • The Minoans 36
  • The Mycenaeans 39
  • Greece: The Archaic and Classical Periods 44
  • Greece: The Hellenistic Period 54

Assignment(s): Discussion Post

Quiz(s): Complete Quiz 2

Contact Hours: 6

Week 2- A
Ch. 3: Ancient India and Southeast Asia

Lecture(s): Ancient India and Southeast Asia

Reading(s): pp 65 - 80

  • Religions of India 65
  • Buddhist Shrines 66
  • Hindu Temples 71

Assignment(s): Discussion Post

Quiz(s): Complete Quiz 3

Contact Hours: 6

Week 2 - B
Test 1
The Traditional Architecture of China and Japan

Lecture(s): The Traditional Architecture of China and Japan

Reading(s): pp. 81 - 104

  • Chinese Architectural Principles 84
  • Principles of City Planning 87
  • Houses and Gardens 90
  • Japanese Temple Architecture 94
  • Buddhist Temples 94
  • Shinto Shrines 97
  • Japanese Houses and Castles 98
  • Zen Buddhist Architecture and Its Derivatives 101

Assignment(s): Discussion Board Post

Quiz(s): Complete Quiz 4

Contact Hours: 6

Week 3 - A
The Roman World

Lecture(s): The Roman World

Reading(s): pp. 105 - 132

  • Etruscan Imprints 105
  • The Romans 107
  • Building Techniques and Materials 108
  • City Planning 111
  • Temples 118
  • Public Buildings 120
  • Basilicas 120
  • Public Baths 121
  • Theaters and Amphitheaters 122
  • Residences 125

Assignment(s): Discussion Posts

Quiz(s): Complete Quiz 5

Contact Hours: 6

Week 3 - B
Early Christian and Byzantine Architecture

Lecture(s): Early Christian and Byzantine Architecture

                    Impact of Early Christian Architecture in Russia

Reading(s): pp. 133 -152

  • Early Christian Basilicas 134
  • Martyria, Baptisteries, and Mausolea 136
  • Byzantine Basilicas and Domed Basilicas 139
  • Centrally Planned Byzantine Churches 143
  • Churches in Russia 146

Assignment(s): Discussion Post

Quiz(s): Complete Quiz 6

Contact Hours: 6

Week 4 - A
Islamic Architecture

Lecture(s): Islamic Architecture

Reading(s): pp. 153 - 176

  • Early Shrines 154
  • Conception of the Mosque 156
  • Columned Hall or Hypostyle Mosques 157
  • Iwan Mosques 160
  • Multi-Domed Mosques 164
  • Tombs 168
  • Houses and Urban Patterns 170

Assignment(s): Discussion Board Post

                           Architectural Project due via dropbox

Quiz(s):  Quiz 7 closes

Contact Hours:6

Week 4 - B
Test 2
Early Medieval and Romanesque Architecture

Lecture(s): Early Medieval and Romanesque Architecture

Readings(s): pp. 177 - 212

  • Carolingian Architecture 178
  • The Revival of Masonry Construction 178
  • Monasteries 182
  • Viking Architecture 184
  • Early Romanesque Architecture 188
  • Romanesque Architecture of the Holy Roman Empire 190
  • Pilgrimage Road Churches 194
  • The Order of Cluny 198
  • Aquitaine and Provence 202
  • Cistercian Monasteries 205
  • Norman Architecture 208

Assignment(s): Discussion Board Post

Quiz(s): Complete Quiz 8

Contact Hours:6

Final Exam
July 2, 2018

Building Identification


Total Contact hours 48