Course syllabus


AUT164 AUT164 Future visions for healthcare, housing and work 1: Residential healthcare - housing for seniors Default term (22.5 hp)

Course is offered by the department of Architecture and Civil Engineering. The course will be given on site at Chalmers.

Contact details


Morgan Andersson, adj. professor, PhD/TD, architect SAR/MSA, Architecture and Civil Engineering, 070-6043560, 


Susanne Clase, architect SAR/MSA, White Architects, 031-608661, 

Jens Axelsson, architect SAR/MSA, White Architects, 031-3095601,

Technical support and administration:

Ásgeir Sigurjónsson, +46(0)76 407 1208,


Course purpose

To practice the design of housing for elderly in a real planning context. This design project is an application that offers a combination of aspects of space for healthcare, housing and work.



For an updated schedule please see under files/schedule.


Course literature

The course literature is presented as compulsory/recommended literature, which is presented below, and an extended literature list, presented in the attached file. Some pdf-files with excerpts are provided. Some of the books are in the form of manuals and are not intended for comprehensive reading, but for more encyclopedic use. 

The literature is in English, along with some important references in Swedish. The students are also encouraged to seek other and new literature individually or in groups. The literature is available either in the Architecture Library; digitally through the digital library services ( or provided by an attached link. Some pdf-files with excerpts are provided in files/literature/references. 

For the literature Review, please choose one or more articles/books from the compulsory list. They can be combined with articles/books from the extended list. 

NOTE! All digital files and links provided in this course is intended for this course only. Spreading, forwarding, or publishing is not allowed. Please, see files/READ ME! Information about copyright.


Compulsory/recommended literature

Laws, standards, guides, official publications and governing documents on different levels 

The references concerning laws, standards, etc. are only to some extent available in English.


Arbetsmiljöverket (2020). Workplace Design. AFS 2020:1. Stockholm: Arbetsmiljöverket. AFS

Boverket (2020). Boverket´s building regulations – mandatory provisions and general recommendations. BBR 2011:6, updated 2020. Karlskrona: Boverket. Boverket

Nord, C. (2013). Design according to the law: juridical dimensions of architecture for assisted living in Sweden. Journal of Housing and the Built Environment, 27(1), 147-155. See pdf-file. 

SS 914 221:2006. Byggnadsutformning - Bostäder - Invändiga mått. Stockholm: SIS. Available at the Architecture Library.

SS 872 500:2015. Kvalitet i omsorg, service, omvårdnad och rehabilitering för äldre med omfattande behov i ordinärt och särskilt boende. Stockholm: SIS. Available at the Architecture Library. 

Ageing and the consequences of ageing 

Feddersen, E., & Lüdtke, I. (2014). Lost in Space: Architecture and Dementia. Basel: Birkhäuser. Available as e-book through the digital library services.

Woodrow, P. ed. (2002). Ageing. Issues for Physical, Psychological & Social Health. London & Philadelphia: Whurr Publishers. Available at the Architecture Library.

Ageing and recidency, housing design and care for elderly

Anderzhon, J. W., Hughes, D., Judd, S., Kiyota, E., & Wijnties, M. (2012). Design for Aging. International Case Studies of Building and Program. New York: Wiley. Available at the Architecture Library. 

Feddersen, E., & Lüdtke, I. (2009). Living for the Elderly. A Design Manual. London: Birkhauser. Available as e-book and at the Architecture Library.

IAHSA (2014). Architecture for an Ageing Population. Melborne AS: Images Publishing Group Pty Ltd. Available at the Architecture Library.

Rodgers, P. A. (ed.). (2022). Design for People Living with Dementia. New York: Routledge. Will be available through the Architecture Library.

Welfare Technology

Chen, F., et al. (eds.). (2020). Smart Assisted Living: Toward an Open Smart-Home Infrastructure. New York: Springer eBooks. Available as e-book.

Environmental cues and health

Georgarakos, M. (2021). Map of Care: 10 smart tools for the evaluation of senior care facilities. Alzheimer's & dementia : the journal of the Alzheimer's Association, 17(S8) suppl., doi:

Joseph, A. (2006). The Role of the Physical Environment in Promoting Health, Safety, and Effectiveness in the Healthcare Workplace. Concord CA: The Center for Health Design. Access: Promoting health.

Accessibility, usability and Universal Design

CABE Housing Learning and improvement Network (2009). Homes for our old age. Independent living by design. Bristol: CABE. Access: Homes for Old Age. CABE

Preiser, W. F. E. & Ostroff, E. (2011). Universal Design Handbook, second edition. New York: McGraw Hill. UD

Safety and related issues, work environment

Bamzar, R., & Ceccato, V. (2015). The nature and the geography of elderly injuries in Sweden. Geo Journal, 80(2), 279–299. Available through the digital library services.

Lindahl, L., Andersson, M., & Paulsson, J. (2018). Perceived safety in extra-care housing for senior residents. Journal of Housing for the Elderly, 32 (1), 58–72. Available through the digital library services.

Thodelius, C., Ekman, R., Lundälv, J. & Ekbrand, H.  (2017). Injury events sustained in residential environments: age and physical disability as explanatory factors for differences in injury patterns in Sweden. Housing and Society, 44(1-2), 127-140. 

City planning and outdoor environments

Rodiek S., & Schwartz, B. eds. (2005). The role of the outdoors in residential environments for aging. New York: Haworth Press. Available at the Architecture Library. 


Extended literature list

Please, find the extended literature list under files/literature/extended literature list.


Useful PDF-files in selection

Please see files/literature/references.


Other useful links

Klokboken för seniorbostäder. (Links to an external site.)

CNN's World's Untold Stories: Dementia Village. youtube (Links to an external site.)

Peder Lycke Centeret, Köpenhamn DK. PLC link (Links to an external site.)

Tornhöjhaven, Köpenhamn DK. link (Links to an external site.)

Bryghuset Svendborg Demensby DK. svendborg link (Links to an external site.)

Esbjerg, Krebsestien Krebsestien DK. krebsestien (Links to an external site.)

DementiaX 2.0 DK. DementiaX link (Links to an external site.)

De Hogewyjk, Weesp, NL. de hogeweyk link (Links to an external site.)

Carpe Diem Dementia Village Oslo NO. carpe diem (Links to an external site.)

Dronning Ingrids Hage, Oslo NO. aftenposten (Links to an external site.)

Velhavens Gate i Oslo välfärdsteknologi NO.

Örebro Trädgårdar. Örebro kommun SE. marge (Links to an external site.)

Åsa seniorby, Fjärås. Åsa senior village SE. 

St Karins senior village in Åland FIN. st karin (Links to an external site.)

Blidö, Norrtelje SE.

Dementia village advisors. Dementia Villages Organisation. DVA (Links to an external site.)

Langley Canada CN. langley (Links to an external site.)

US San Diego, Lantern Ohio USA. lantern (Links to an external site.)

Kent dementia village UK. the guardian (Links to an external site.)

Månstorps Ängar dementia village in Vellinge. månstorp (Links to an external site.)


Course design

To obtain the grade passed, the following compulsory elements are required. 

  • The Design Project, containing design-work in the teams and scheduled tutoring.
  • Studio Meetings.
  • Lectures.
  • Scheduled self-studies/individual studies.
  • Presentations:
    • PowerPoint presentation (5 min) of yourself for the other students (no hand-in before).
    • Presentation of the project ideas for the other students (no hand-in before).
    • Mid-crit presentation (hand-in before).
    • External presentation (no hand-in before).
    • Final presentation (hand-in before).
    • Exhibition material.
  • Literary assignments:
    • Reading the recommended literature.
    • A written literature review (hand-in assignment).
    • An accountancy of an interview of an older person (hand-in assignment).
  • Workshops, laborations, etc.:
    • Day sketch workshop.
    • Site laboration workshop.
    • Persona workshop.
  • Case studies:
    • One case study housing for the elderly.
    • Two case studies of assisted living. 

Students deliver their assignments via Canvas. Communication from the teachers are performed via email and/or Canvas. Canvas is accessed via the Student Portal. More information about the assignments will be given in the course.

 To work in the Model Workshop on Ground Floor, you must first attend an instruction course, ca. 2 hrs. For information contact the examiner.


The Design Project 

The mid-crit and final presentations of the results are delivered on Canvas in a digital A3 booklet, maximum 20 pages, landscape orientation. Drawings must contain scale and scale bars.

 The mid-crit must include: 

  • Main concept and visions for the design Project.
  • Site analysis.
  • Site plan.
  • Floor plans.
  • Plans of the units.
  • Apartment plans (furnished).
  • Key sections.
  • Conceptual ideas of the facades.
  • Explanatory texts.


The  final delivery must include: 

  • Site plan, clearly showing entrances, parking, walking-space, green areas and relationship to the neighborhood.
  • Floor plans.
  • Plans of the units (furnished).
  • Apartment plans (furnished).
  • Key sections.
  • Facades.
  • Interior and exterior visualizations.
  • A3 digital booklet (pdf) maximum 20 pages. Plus one printed copy for the exhibition, see Exhibition and External presentations.
  • One printed A1 poster portrait orientation for the exhibition - see below.

All pages must include the number of the team and page number.

All drawings must include scale and scale bars. If appliccable, also north arrow.


Shared file area

Instructions for connecting to AUT164 shared work folder:

For Windows, follow these instructions and write aut164 instead of <name of group file area>: 

For Mac follow these instructions and replace the text "gruppfilutrymme" with aut164: 


Application project

 This Studio-project deals with the challenges of integrating elderly people in society and especially persons with dementia diseases. The theme of this project is the Dementia Village. To do Design for All (Mace, 1985) is to design dementia friendly assisted living facilities and to empower our ageing population! It is about architecture for an ageing society. You will obtain skills in designing space for housing and care for elderly people, in a societal context. You will gain general knowledge about aging aspects, the aging society, and societal aspects in relation to building design and building context. 

An important factor that gives special relevance to this project is the demographic development. The increasing ageing population puts demand on effective and up-to-date eldercare and housing solutions. This is a question of sustainability – to be able to give old persons a rich and good life is to build a society that is sustainable in both economic and social aspects. It is at the same time a question of flexibility and usability – our built environment will have to be used in several new ways in the future. You can contribute as an architect, by showing the possibilities in spaces and buildings! 

Another factor is the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. How does this affect how we plan for communal housing for elderly people? Do we have to reconsider the design of apartment sizes and common spaces? This studio provides opportunities for investigating housing design in relation to elderly people who are a risk group. 

As an outcome of this, there is an increasing demand for more knowledge among architect companies, authorities and academy. In turn, this presumably means large investments and more jobs within our discipline for the coming 10-20 years. 

We will work with a site in Utby, a suburb northeast of Gothenburg. The site is selected because it presents appropriate conditions for the aim of the studio-project. The design task is described in detail in files/programe.

  • Connection to local community / co-location aspects / synergies / social resilience.
  • Perspectives including building design and urban planning.
  • From group to community / from dementia group to dementia village!

You will handle a real context – a problem with societal relevance. The project will be carried out in cooperation with the “client”. You will have a dialogue with experts on different kinds of housing and care. Your project will have a chance to influence the client’s process. Today we consider persons 65 years or older to be seniors. The focus of the studio will be on the situation for elderly persons, housing, care and social context.

The study will have a focus on persons with dementia diseases, but also on the persons who are working in the facility and visitors.


Changes made since the last occasion

The significant difference since last year is the new application project.

The Covid-19 situation meant that the course 2021 was given via Zoom.


Learning objectives and syllabus

After completion of the course the student should have acquired skills in

 Knowledge and understanding 

  • Describe and refer to different aspects of architecture for an ageing society.
  • Describe and refer to relevant research findings in the sector of housing for seniors. 

Ability and Skill 

  • Be able to fulfill a qualified project within architecture, targeting an ageing population.
  • Be able to design, develop and preserve the built environment in a holistic perspective regarding existing values and demands from different user's perspectives.
  • Be able to take place in a design team for housing for elderly and understand the prerequisites of housing for old persons.
  • Be able to handle the specific prerequisites when physical space has more than one purpose. 

Ability of Assessment and Attitude 

  • Be able to integrate human needs and esthetic values in a long-term sustainable architecture.
  • Be able to holistically weigh in relevant scientific, societal, aesthetic and ethnical aspects in their judgments and tradeoffs, taking into account needs of the society and all people's different needs and abilities, as well as to the collaboration between people and the physical habitat, including working space.
  • Be able to in a national as well as an international context in the image and model, oral, written and otherwise, in dialogue with different groups, clearly present and discuss their conclusions and the knowledge and arguments that form the basis for the conclusions. This includes also being able to communicate on their design with relevant parts in real planning. In this course the generic skills of communication and visualization, oral and in written will be trained. 

The pedagogical idea is that students work in teams and thereby develop communication skills and ability to work interdisciplinary with people of varying backgrounds. The Studio also contains lectures, workshops, literature studies and study-visits. 

You will do a design project on housing combined with care for elderly, relating to a real problem and site. The dialogue with external stakeholders is vital and also the presentation to different external experts. 

As this project-course is part of an academic education in the Master-program, the ability to utilize literature in English is essential. It is required to read the recommended literature and write a short review, 2-5 pages, of literature of minimum one reference in the literature lists. The review must consist of a short summary plus reflections, based on your coming role as an architect, referring to the subject of this course.

Link to the syllabus on Studieportalen

Study plan


Examination form

Grading: Failed (equals grade 2), 3, 4 or 5.


To pass the course all deliverables must be handed in. Active participation at critique sessions, lectures and other scheduled activities is required.

The final individual grade is based on the grades from the Project work and from the individual assignments.

All students in a project team receive the same final individual grade. Based on this grade, and the grades from the individual assignment, a final grade is calculated, see example below.

Note! In the first half of the course, all students who hand in the required deliverables and participate actively at critique sessions and lectures will receive a preliminary grade 3. At the end of the course, the students will receive their final grade.


Evaluation criteria and grading for the Projects

  1. Vision and aim. Understanding, articulation, and response to the client’s vision and the projects aims.
  2. Context and site. Quality of the site analysis, understanding of the context and its interpretation. To what degree the building interacts with and enriches the context.
  3. Concept. How the Project’s concept holistically synthesizes issues based on the projects vision, the context, and the sustainability goals (the client’s sustainability goals, and/or goals formulated within the Project).
  4. Design. How the Project analyzes and handles complex relationships based on program, circulation, and activities and fundamental architectural concepts like space, structure, light, tectonics, and massing. Special attention on the design of the units and apartments.
  5. Presentation. To what degree the formatting and articulation of the presentation (language, graphics, models, references, etc.) makes the project understandable and readable, and strengthen its main principles.
  6. Methods. To what degree the methods are relevant in the analyses and the design process and how they strengthen the execution of the Project.

The grade is based on the evaluation criteria A-F and each criteria is evaluated as follows.


First, a general assessment is made according to the following:

Failed (2): The project is clearly unviable. Significant parts of the requested material are missing in the project report and presentations.

Grade 3: The project is carried out at an acceptable level and is feasible. No parts are missing (additions can be discussed).

Grade 4: The project is well executed and well feasible. All parts of the project report and presentations are included and are well implemented.

Grade 5: The project is very well executed and very well feasible. All parts of the project report and presentations are included and are very well implemented.


Then, an assessment of each of the criteria A-F, above, is made according to the following:

Failed (2): The criterium is not met.

Grade 3: The criterium is met on an acceptable level.

Grade 4: The criterium is well met.

Grade 5: The criterium is very well met.


Individual assignments grading

The individual assignments are literature assignments. They are each graded according to language, structure, and content.

  1. Language

Failed (2): The language is incoherent and the text is difficult to understand.

Grade 3: The language has an acceptable level. Spelling errors and grammatical errors.

Grade 4: The language maintains a good level. Few errors.

Grade 5: The language maintains a very good level. Very few errors.

  1. Structure:

Failed (2): The structure counteracts the understanding of the text.

Grade 3: The structure is logical and understandable.

Grade 4: The structure supports the understanding of the text well.

Grade 5: The structure supports the understanding of the text very well.

  1. Content:

Failed (2): The content is not relevant to the task and / or not presented correctly.

Grade 3: The content is relevant to the task and presented in a correct way.

Grade 4: The content is relevant to the task and well presented.

Grade 5: The content is very relevant to the task and very well presented.


The final grading

Each student receives an individual grade, based on the grading procedure described above.

Course summary:

Date Details Due