2016 Basics of Design Theory of Visual Environment

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Urban Design and Built Environment
Nakamura Yoshiki 
Class Format
Media-enhanced courses
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Offered quarter
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
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Course description and aims

Students will obtain basic knowledge on realizing intended appearance by manipulating light and color. Especially they will understand the relationship between psychophysical values of light or color and their perceptional experience, and they will understand tools for estimating appearance from psychophysical measures of light and color, and will obtain how to use them.

Student learning outcomes

Obtaining basic design skills for light and color in urban environmental engineering, Architecture, environment engineering of Architecture and Building service engineering.


Light, color, Architecture, landscape

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

The instructor will provide report theme in every lesson, and some of students assigned by the instructor will have presentation in the next lesson.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 What is visual environment design? Obtaining general knowledge of visual environment design.
Class 2 Visual stimuli and sensation (referring to Newton and Goethe) Obtaining previous researches on visual environment.
Class 3 Psychophysical measures of light and color Understanding psychophysical measures of light and color.
Class 4 Object color representation system (Color constancy) Understanding object color
Class 5 Characteristics of distribution of light and color Understanding decisive impact of light and color distribution on visual environment
Class 6 Relation between appearance and light and color (Contrast profile method) Understanding estimation method of appearance
Class 7 Appearance estimation tool on wavelet transform Understand appearance estimation tools based on image transformation.
Class 8 Examples of application design tools. Understanding concrete procedure for visual environment design.


Not decided.

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Not specified.

Assessment criteria and methods

Evaluated on all reports submitted in every lesson.

Related courses

  • ARC.E424 : Design Theory of Architectural Visual Environment
  • UDE.E503 : Design Theory of Urban Visual Environment

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

Not specified

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