Monash University has launched Australia’s first new architecture course in 30 years.

The course, starting in 2008, will be taught at the Faculty of Art and Design at the University’s Caulfield campus, where students will have access to the full range of art and design studios and workshops.

Faculty Dean Professor John Redmond says the course will take a different approach, placing a strong emphasis on creativity and innovation.

“Many schools in Australia offer architecture within a framework of planning, building and technology but nobody offers it within an art school,” he says.

“Over time, the role of the architect in the building process has been diluted by developer-led processes. The conductor has been taken off the podium and now stands within the orchestra.

“The time is right to re-assert the value of architecture and its role as the core discipline of the built environment. This course will turn the key focus back to architecture, and place the architect centre stage once again.

“I hope the result will be a built environment – homes, public buildings and office blocks – that better reflects the needs and desires of the community,” says Redmond.

“Melbourne is arguably the architecture capital of Australia. It is fitting this city is home to the nation’s newest and creatively focused architecture course.”

Traditionally, architecture programs have consisted of five years of study to attain a Bachelor of Architecture.

Redmond says Monash will be one of the first universities to adopt a new model of a three-year bachelor degree followed by a two-year professional masters degree. Students who successfully complete the University’s Bachelor of Architectural Design course will be guaranteed admission into a Master of Architecture.

The Faculty of Art and Design established an advisory group of Australian architects to help create the new program.