period 1

period 2

period 3

period 4


graduation studio

graduation studio

graduation studio

graduation studio

entrepreneurial skills


sustainable design


practice portfolio


Academic year

Course name


Study year







Work form

EU Qualifications


Practice Portfolio 4




May 10th 2019

Sandra Rozemeijer (Practice coordinator) + external assessors



a t/m k




1. Introduction

Fontys School of Fine and Performing Arts (FHK) in Tilburg offers concurrent master degree courses in architecture and urbanism (MA + U). Special feature of this program is the strong orientation to professional practice: both students and teachers work in practice. The courses at MA + U are characterized by simultaneously studying and working in professional practice. Students work at least 20 hours per week, and the skills they gain in practice are part of the external part of the curriculum. This means that the working environment is also a learning environment. As a student worker they perform activities that contribute to their development towards becoming an adequate professional.


2. Entry in the register of architects

The profession of architects and urban designers are protected by a professional licencing system. The Architect Title Act (WAT) protects the title architect and urban designer. After finishing the master degree course at M A+U they have the right to register in the register of the Office Architects Register (BA) and they are entitled to use the relevant title. This ensures that graduates of the Master:

- have the right of establishment and freedom to provide services within the European Community;

- and have the internationally recognized title of Master of Architecture (MArch) or Master of Urbanism (Murb) may enter and thus can operate as a professional outside the European Community.


The competences that are achieved after completing the study comply at least with the regulations as stated in the 'Nadere regeling inrichting opleidingen architect, stedenbouwkundige, tuin- en landschapsarchitect en interieurarchitect’, part of the Architect Title Act (WAT). The full text and all conditions can be found on the website of Bureau Architectenregister (

All academies in the Netherlands work with the same set of competences in order to reach the level of regulations of WAT (see also Annex ‘Transition Table WAT’)


3. Competences and levels

The Education of MA + U is competency-based education. Translated to the current educational insights competence-based learning is geared towards training students to learn independently and context based. Information from the outside is enriched in conjunction with existing knowledge, understanding, skills, expectations and needs. Especially in training at master level, this is an appropriate form of education. Developments in professional practice have encouraged this kind of learning. A constantly changing environment requires continuous updating of knowledge and ability to respond to ever changing requirements.


The skills and knowledge gained in practice must meet eight competencies.(see also Annex ‘Survey Professional Qualifications’). These eight competences are divided in four competences concerning the students attitude while practicing, and four competences in the different faces of the profession. The eight competences have been prepared jointly by the academies in the Netherlands are both related to the demands of WAT and to the internal competences of MA + U (see also ‘Transition Table External and Internal Competences’. The skills they develop by working in practice grade from year 1 to 4 of the study. This process is divided into three levels, indicating an increasing level of autonomy and independence of judging and acting:

Practice Portfolio year 1: all competences, level 1

Practice Portfolio year 2 and 3: all competences, level 2

Practice Portfolio year 4: all competences, level 3




1. Positioning

Argues one’s own position, one’s own functioning and choices with regards to design (design aspects, design project, profiling) and work (activities, business opportunities) in relation to:

- Position and developments within the occupational group/the discipline.

- The role and responsibilities of the architect / urban planner/ landscape architect.

Operational levels (Level 3):

• Demonstrates possessing accurate and adequate knowledge with regards to one’s own discipline, the occupational field and related occupational fields, and can apply this knowledge adequately in reflecting upon one’s own production, positioning and role in the professional practice.

• Practices according to the professional responsibilities (both formal and ethical) that the profession entails.

• Actively analyses and evaluates one’s own design choices, design results and oeuvre, as well as the conditions under which the design practice functions and can connect personal conclusions to it.

• Processes knowledge and insights of one’s own discipline and related professional fields in one’s own vision of the profession

Learning outcomes professional experience products (Level 3):

• Practical documents which demonstrate one’s own position, the functioning, the considerations and the choices, with examples which feature:

• evaluations of one’s own views on the social developments of the occupational group/discipline.

• evaluations of one’s own views on the role and professional responsibilities of the architect/urban planner/ landscape architect.

• one’s own views and reflection on one’s own production, one’s own positioning and one’s own role within the professional practice.


2. Organising

Organises (one’s own) work and design processes, works together effectively with colleagues, different beneficiaries, disciplines concerned and acts responsibly on the basis of one’s insights into tactical, strategic and organisational aspects of business practice and the decision-making process.

Operational levels (Level 3):

• Independently take responsibility for the work process and the distinguishable phases and aspects within it.

• The student is also able to:

• independently plan projects in a realistic way, with regard to content, time and finances.

• independently structure, coordinate and surveythe progress and quality of the work activities (both one’s own work activities and those of others).

• implement effective decision-making in complex and unpredictable situations.

• effectively cooperate in design and realisation projects; in which various beneficiaries and disciplines are involved, safeguard the progress and give guidance where necessary.

Learning outcomes professional experience products (Level 3):

• Practical documents with one’s own products and experiences regarding planning and organising (reports internal/external meetings, plans, staff deployment, finances). This includes explicit attention for:

• reflection on the organisation and management of the organisation.

• reflection on the organisation of projects (planning, budgeting, and safeguarding).

• examples of (successful) collaboration with other beneficiaries and disciplines.


3. Interpersonal skills

Acts in professional practice situations with an awareness of social considerations and responsibilities, professional values/norms and judicial frameworks, and identifies tasks, opportunities or problems.

Operational levels (Level 3):

• Names social responsibilities and developments in connection with and intertwined with the design.

• Conducts himself in accordance with the values and norms of the professional role.

• Describes the complete judicial frameworks for the design (the student is working on), addresses and solves problems.

Learning outcomes professional experience products (Level 3):

• Exhibits the full integration of social responsibilities and relevant social developments during the explanation of a design;

• Conducts himself professionally in all professional situations and actively deploys his professional role in dealings with other parties;

• Is unequivocally clear about the judicial responsibilities of the parties involved for the project in question.


4. Communicating

Communicates in a convincing manner (visually, in writing and orally) to a diverse audience about his professional position, design approach, working method, research and/or design project.

Operational levels (Level 3):

• The information selection is optimally attuned to the goal of the presentation;

• The information selection is optimally attuned to the target group;

• Present collaboratively or independently to various external parties;

• Consults independently with various external parties.

• Means and techniques are optimally and creatively deployed.

• Is goal-oriented, effective and convincing in the information transference.

• Demonstrates empathy in dealings with others, gives others the feeling of being heard without losing sight of one’s own goal.

Learning outcomes professional experience products (Level 3):

• Practical documents containing examples of one’s own:

o correspondence

o reports

o visualisations

o sketches and diagrams

o drawings

o scale models

o schemes

o texts

o (partial) presentations (2D and/or 3D)

o explanation and reflection on the above-mentioned components

o explanation and reflection on the nature of various meetings

o explanation and reflection on discussions held and various project presentations



5. Enterprising

Recognises how assignments are determined, defined, initiated and/or acquired and organised professionally, contributes (as part of a team) to defining the assignment, feasibility research and drawing up project plans. Takes initiative to obtain (more) responsibility with regards to the organisation of the firm and/or project management.

Operational levels (Level 3):

• Applies the means and activities necessary to obtain/initiate assignments.

• Knows which business agreements are relevant within the design practice and how these are entered into and laid down

• Recommends on the basis of conducted feasibility research, the wishes and ambitions of clients and stakeholders - solution directions (in historical, social, cultural, spatial, ecological, technical, aesthetic, judicial and financial context).

• with regards to ambitions, wishes/expectations and conditions - and the relationship with the design based on it

• Shows enterprising conduct within one’s own work activities:

o identifies opportunities and takes initiatives

o is innovative and is able to think ‘out of the box’

o takes risks and shows daring

o displays persuasiveness and perseverance.

Learning outcomes professional experience products (Level 3):

• Practical documents with one’s own products and experiences revolving around the diverse aspects of obtaining and initiating assignments and the business and design-related agreements which subsequently follow. This includes products such as stakeholder inventories, force field analysis, feasibility research and programme of requirements of larger/more complex assignments which have been worked on independently or with others.

• In the portfolio, special attention is paid to:

• reflection aimed at obtaining knowledge and skills by initiating assignments independently.

• evaluations and activities aimed at obtaining knowledge and skills regarding networking, acquisition, negotiation, drawing up an offer and contracting.


6. Designing

Researches, analyses and defines functional and conceptual points of departure for the design and, creates the foundation for a design in a structure design or functional-spatial concept, and develops this into an integral final design and/or spatial advice.

Operational levels (Level 3):

• Formulates a clear spatial formulation of a problem on the basis of targeted research prior to and during the design process.

• Applies complex points of departure and preconditions to a convincing design.

• Efficiently deploys design tools and design techniques for the spatial solution.

• Switches effectively between the scale levels and design domains.

Learning outcomes professional experience products (Level 3):

• Practical documents with one’s own products and experiences, including:

o design sketches and drawings.

o images of models, scale models etc.

o presentation images (with an indication of visual manifestation, materialisation, atmosphere etc.).

o explanation of the work performed.

o explanation of the relevant and applicable regulations and permits.

o explanation of the aspects of application, maintenance, sustainability.

o explanation of collaboration with experts and professionals from different design domains.

o reflection on work performed and the actions of the level mentioned.






7. Preparation realisation phase

Has a clear picture of the technical, financial, contractual and judicial aspects of the design, including the consequences for the realisation preparation phase, adequately applies these insights and can advise the client about it.

Operational levels (Level 3):

• Works independently on the realisation of the technical elaboration or the specified spatial advice of the final design;

• Integrates advice of experts in the field of physics, installation technology and (fire) safety;

• Advises independently on realisation of technical specification;

• Indicates which process documents and/or permits are needed preceding the realisation of the design and how they are set up, employed and/or applied for and applies this under supervision;

• Demonstrates experience with realisation costs and budget methodology to substantiate the feasibility of the design and/or spatial advice during all phases and advises the client on this;

• Demonstrates experience in the different ways of contracting and procurement, including the relevant laws and regulations and advises the client on this.

Learning outcomes professional experience products (Level 3):

• Practical documents with one’s own products and experiences with regards to recording a final design into a technical design or specified spatial planning document. This describes and shows the relevant realisation of technical specifications.

• In the practical documents, there is specific attention for:

• independently drawn up construction preparation documents and/or planning documents (technical preconditions, detailed elaborations, material definitions, (performance) specifications, etc.) as the realisation of technical specification of a final design.

• construction preparation documents and/or process documents drawn up independently required to apply for permits and/or prior to the implementation of a design.

• showing or describing of examples of projects the student has worked on with regards to experience in realisation costs, budget methodology and advising the client on this.

• descriptions of experience with contracting and procurement and advising the clients.


8. Supervision implementation and execution

Comprehends the aspects of implementation of the design, on the basis of which he manages the implementation and/or supervises it and checks the results.

Operational levels (Level 3):

• Works independently on and/or supervises the elaboration of the design and/or spatial advice with regard to the preparation of the technical aspects, and the realisation in relation to the entirety of the design.

• Performs independently and/or supervises the aesthetic control with regard to the detailed elaboration of technical aspects in relation to the entirety of the design.

• Shows he possesses the correct and adequate knowledge with regard to the management and the related responsibilities.


Learning outcomes professional experience products (Level 3):

• Practical documents with one’s own products and descriptions of one’s own experiences with regard to independent preparation and supervising the realisation of designs.

• Examples of products and descriptions:

• Leading projects independently.

• independent (directing) production of construction plans and/or technical planning documents.

• independently checking construction plans and/or planning and realisation documents.

• products which demonstrate the communication and collaboration with involved parties during the execution or implementation such as correspondence, reports etc.

• description of involvement in aesthetic control.

• descriptions with regard to the knowledge obtained in the field of management and/or the implementation of designs.


4. Self-study

To be admitted to the MA + U programme students are in the possession of a Bachelor degree. On that basis, they are a full-fledged employee working in the professional field. The deployment they should realize when studying as an employee is essentially one of personal growth. The quality of their development is determined by the extent to which they themselves are committed and take responsibility. The structure of the concurrent curriculum encourages this (study) attitude.


The emphasis on self-study relates to the great diversity in professional practice of architects and urban designers. Work situations of students vary widely and may have very different pathways. Within the limits of the initial and final attainment of professional practice the students can indicate what their own learning objectives are. In all cases they are therefore responsible to find a relevant workplace


The coordinator of professional practice at MA + U is the main contact person for all students when it comes to professional practice. The coordinator visits the workplace twice, usually in the first and in the third year. In an interview with both employer and student the coordinator reviews the nature and level of work, the individual development of the student, and discusses the competencies that will be developed. The visit is not an assessment but focuses on monitoring the development of the student in practice.


5. Workload

Both internal and external curriculum lasts four years. In order to be registered for the training students work at least 20 hours per week in a relevant professional setting. This working in practice belongs to the external curriculum of the programme. Both the internal and external curriculum are equally heavy and consist both of 120 credits (30 credits per year).


6. Method of assessment

The assessment of the results of the professional practice part is performed by external experts, under the final responsibility of the coordinator of professional practice. At the end of each study-year the development is assessed on the basis of an assignment prepared by the student: a practice portfolio, and practice forms on which both employer and student indicate the obtained level of competences.


Contents practice portfolio

The practice portfolio is more than a record of the projects of the office to which the student was employed. It provides insight into the skills and knowledge gained in practice. It is not a snapshot, but the portfolio provides an overview of the development that the student has made. The portfolio is a reflection on their own actions and includes an development plan for the future. At the end of each school year, a new portfolio is created, in which the development, skills and knowledge of that year that are presented. However, it is important to also (briefly) show the development in previous years.



The skills and knowledge gained in practice must be directed to the above eight competencies. The practice portfolio consists of at least 8 x A3 with images and a brief explanation in text. The choice of the projects is determined by the learning process that can be indicated. Selections can range from a key detail that explains the design concept to a total design with the most critical decision points. The explanatory text, the context (client, location, phase) described, and the learning moments explained (task, problem definition, process, reflection and evaluation). In the portfolio the emphases is on your own role in the process. Students are trained in the first year in the drafting and preparation of portfolios.


Besides the portfolio, the determination of the developed competencies should be outlined in a "Practice Text' of at least 1,000 words. This text is separate from the notes to the footage of the practice portfolio, but indicates the context in which to understand the teaching moments. To understand the background of the student, a resume should be included as well.


Consultation with the coach, mentor or employer is required to approve the practice portfolio, All papers must be released by the employer and signed.



There are four forms to be completed, signed and submitted:

• Practice Form (July / December)

• Practice Form (January / to June)

• Checklist student

• Checklist employer



The practice portfolios are submitted by the students and studied in advance of the presentations by external evaluators. The coordinator organizes a practical portfolio meeting and monitors the process. During this meeting, students present and discuss their practice portfolio in a digital presentation (approx. 20 min). The evaluators will raise additional questions, and advice on the presentation and convert their findings in a written review. The assessment shall be communicated to the students, commented upon and there is an opportunity for discussion.



• Overview professional qualifications, learning outcomeslevels and level indicators of the external curriculum of the Academies of Architecture (7-7-2014)

• Transition Table WAT (7-7-2014)

• Transition Table External and Internal Competences

• Practice Form (July / December)

• Practice Form (January / June)

• Checklist student

• Checklist employer






Practice portfolio (description see above)



Competence assessment based on portfolio plus additional documentation (see above)



See above



8 professional competences, level 3