International Studies In Vernacular Architecture

By Prof. Ram Sateesh Pasupuleti, Prof. Yenny Gunawan , Prof. Melissa Malouf Belz   |   IIT Roorkee, CAREDs
Learners enrolled: 891   |  Exam registration: 100
This course, titled 'International Studies in Vernacular Architecture,' is a response to rising concerns regarding how to study and teach the world's vernacular architectural traditions in Architecture education. The objective of the course is to investigate various facets of vernacular architectural tradition and to acquire a critical contextual awareness that will aid in effectively addressing the problems and challenges of the present situation. The content and structure of the course are unique, and it provides urgent and pertinent responses to a variety of problems ranging from climate change to housing issues. This course will assist in providing the next generation of students and instructors with the essential knowledge and understanding of the world's vernacular traditions by re-examining diverse approaches of learning and inquiry. The proposed course can be considered an elective subject by schools imparting architectural education, sociology, anthropology, and cultural geography.
Course Status : Completed
Course Type : Elective
Duration : 4 weeks
Category :
  • Architecture and Planning
Credit Points : 1
Level : Undergraduate/Postgraduate
Start Date : 21 Aug 2023
End Date : 15 Sep 2023
Enrollment Ends : 21 Aug 2023
Exam Registration Ends : 15 Sep 2023
Exam Date : 28 Oct 2023 IST

Note: This exam date is subjected to change based on seat availability. You can check final exam date on your hall ticket.

Page Visits

Course layout

Week 1: Anthropology of Shelter
Week 2: Materials and Resources
Week 3: Cultural Geography
Week 4: Natural Hazards

Books and references

1. Oliver, Paul (1987). Dwellings: the house across the world. Phaidon, Oxford.
2. Oliver, P. (2003). Dwellings: The Vernacular House World Wide. London: Phaidon Press.
3. Oliver (2006) Built to meet needs: Cultural issues in vernacular Architecture, Oxford: Architectural press
4. Rapoport, A. (1969). House, Form and Culture. New Jersey: Prentice Hall

Instructor bio

Prof. Ram Sateesh Pasupuleti

IIT Roorkee
Prof. Ram Sateesh Pasupuleti, is an Indian architect also a member of Swedish Association of Architects. He is currently working as Assistant Professor Department of Architecture and Planning Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee. He is currently the Professor-in charge Institute Archives at IIT Roorkee. He will be taking responsibility for coordinating the proposed course on International Studies in Vernacular Architecture. The other instructors mentioned above represent different academic and practice sectors coming different parts of world. This then help to bring an international perspective on the vernacular Architecture studies.

Prof. Yenny Gunawan

Yenny Gunawan is the Head of Research and Design Development at Center for Adaptation and Resilience Environmental Design Studies (CAREDs) and founder of Nenun Ruang, an education platform for progressive architecture and craftsmanship design in Indonesia. She obtained her MA in International Studies in Vernacular Architecture, Oxford Brookes University, Oxford, UK and a Bachelor of Architecture Engineering from Parahyangan Catholic University, Bandung, Indonesia. She has researched and published papers on vernacular architecture. She has been working with rural communities, from West Sumba, South Sulawesi, South Kalimantan, Central Java, West to North Sumatra through various projects; such as schools design, building community shelter, and research-based spatial planning for traditional communities. Her current project is Tectonic Culture in relation to Learning by Making and Emergency Evacuation Shelter Design. Apart from the local communities, she has worked experiences with trans-national professionals from Japan, UK, Peru, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam. She has also led workshops, research, art installations, exhibitions, design projects and symposiums.

Prof. Melissa Malouf Belz

BS Environmental Design, University of Massachusetts, Amherst 1995 MA International Studies in Vernacular Architecture/Architectural Regeneration and Development ,Oxford Brookes University 2000 PhD Geography, Kansas State University, Manhattan 2012 Melissa Malouf Belz has a PhD in geography with interests in the cultural landscape, and how and why places change. Her research has focused on the enduring and declining traditions of architectural woodcarving and vernacular design in the Indian Himalaya. Melissa spent 10 years working in the field of architecture and international development with projects focused on appropriate and sustainable construction, and preservation. She worked in Mexico’s border region for U.S. non-profits, in Mongolia for the United Nations Development Program, and for a US National Historic District. Melissa is now Associate Teaching Professor in Integrative and Global Studies, at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in a program that guides students in STEAM fields through research projects geared towards building holistic thinking and global literacy, supported by a global network of community partnerships.

Course certificate

The course is free to enroll and learn from. But if you want a certificate, you have to register and write the proctored exam conducted by us in person at any of the designated exam centres.
The exam is optional for a fee of Rs 1000/- (Rupees one thousand only).
Date and Time of Exams: 
28 October 2023 Morning session 9am to 12 noon; Afternoon Session 2pm to 5pm.
Registration url: Announcements will be made when the registration form is open for registrations.
The online registration form has to be filled and the certification exam fee needs to be paid. More details will be made available when the exam registration form is published. If there are any changes, it will be mentioned then.
Please check the form for more details on the cities where the exams will be held, the conditions you agree to when you fill the form etc.


Average assignment score = 25% of average of best 3 assignments out of the total 4 assignments given in the course.
Exam score = 75% of the proctored certification exam score out of 100

Final score = Average assignment score + Exam score

YOU WILL BE ELIGIBLE FOR A CERTIFICATE ONLY IF AVERAGE ASSIGNMENT SCORE >=10/25 AND EXAM SCORE >= 30/75. If one of the 2 criteria is not met, you will not get the certificate even if the Final score >= 40/100.

Certificate will have your name, photograph and the score in the final exam with the breakup.It will have the logos of NPTEL and IIT Roorkee.It will be e-verifiable at nptel.ac.in/noc.

Only the e-certificate will be made available. Hard copies will not be dispatched.

Once again, thanks for your interest in our online courses and certification. Happy learning.

- NPTEL team

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