BMS School of Architecture, Yelahanka: Instilling Humanist Ideas and Societal Values in the Future Generation of Architects

BMS School of Architecture
BMS School of Architecture, Yelahanka

Beyond merely constructing buildings, architecture is about creating environments that foster connectivity, functionality, and sustainability. Nestled in the heart of Bangalore, BMS School of Architecture (BMSSA) stands as a pioneering institution shaping the future of this industry. Established in 2010, BMSSA has rapidly distinguished itself as one of the leading architecture schools in India, consistently earning recognition for its rigorous academics, innovative approach, and dedication to fostering exceptional architects.

According to Prof (Dr) Shaila Bantanur, BMSSA, the 8th institution under the BMS Educational Trust, has the distinction of being established as an Independent “School of Architecture.”

BMSSA is a centre of innovation and one of the nation’s few independent architecture schools with a mission of educating future generations to be ethical professionals, creative designers and informed citizens. BMSSA became the first independent architecture school in Karnataka to be accredited by NAAC (National Assessment and Accreditation Council) in 2021.

Here’s what sets BMSSA apart:

*A Legacy of Excellence: As part of the renowned BMS Educational Trust, BMSSA inherits a rich heritage of academic excellence, fostering a culture of continuous learning and pushing the boundaries of design.

*Award-Winning Faculty: Renowned professionals and seasoned educators guide students, imparting invaluable knowledge, practical skills, and a critical perspective essential for success in the field.

*Unparalleled Curriculum: BMSSA offers a comprehensive curriculum encompassing theoretical knowledge, design thinking, and technical expertise, preparing students for diverse architectural career paths.

*Global Exposure: The school fosters international collaborations and encourages participation in study abroad programs and exchange opportunities, broadening students’ perspectives and enriching their learning experience.

Instilling Architectonic Wisdom

Further, in its mission, BMS School of Architecture is dedicated to educating future generations to be ethical professionals, creative designers and informed citizens.

Sharing their vision, the Director and Professor of BMSSA and Member Secretary of BOG BMSSA, Prof (Dr) Shaila, says it is to build a world-class research and educational institution where knowledge is power, encouraging innovations and providing services for a sustainable built environment and architecture.

The institute emphasizes architectural education as a concept founded by intellectual endeavour and taught as a critical, creative pursuit. The school is committed to producing thinkers and skilled professionals who are well-versed in the contemporary techniques and knowledge of the discipline. “We pledge to instil humanist ideas and societal values in the future generation architects.”

Adversities are a part of every successful journey. Prof (Dr) Shaila reflects on the 

Challenges Encountered:

~Maintaining Academic Performance: Ensuring satisfactory academic performance and addressing the needs of both regular and slow learners presented a challenge. Identifying struggling students and providing appropriate support was crucial for maintaining a high pass percentage.

~Course Structure and Pedagogy Alignment: Aligning the curriculum with industry needs and pedagogical standards while adhering to the university’s prescribed syllabus required careful consideration and adjustments.

~Integration of Practical Training and Software Learning: Incorporating practical training, software learning, and hands-on experience within the curriculum posed a challenge, especially with the revisions of the VTU syllabus, which emphasized principles of design and practical skills.

Institutional Solutions:

>Continuous Teaching Process Review: The institute regularly reviews its teaching-learning process to ensure effectiveness. This includes subject coordination meetings, lesson plan finalization, and scheme of evaluation approval by the director. Continuous internal evaluations help identify learner levels and implement remedial measures. The school also focuses on co-curricular and extra-curricular activities for overall student performance growth, monitored through the online student scorecard system.

>Course Audit and Pedagogical Improvement: Conducting course audits with industry experts helps identify gaps and challenges in pedagogy. Suggestions for improvement are incorporated into subsequent semester plans to enhance course outcomes and ensure quality architectural education.

>Guest Lectures and Workshops: Organizing guest lectures, workshops, and interactions with practitioners and visiting faculty members enriches students’ knowledge base and bridges the gap between theoretical learning and practical application. These initiatives align with industry needs and provide students with contemporary and applied knowledge.

>National and International Study Tours: Regular national and international study tours expose students to diverse architectural practices and enable interactions with local architects and experts. These tours broaden students’ perspectives and sensibilities, fostering a holistic understanding of architecture and design.

Techno-Educated Gen-Next

Further, to enhance the educational process, the BMS School of Architecture leverages technology in the following ways:

*Investment in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Systems: The institute has invested in the latest ICT systems, ensuring uninterrupted student learning experiences, even during the pandemic. This includes providing access to digital resources and support for students and staff.

*Modern Teaching Aids and Infrastructure: BMSSA has modern teaching aids such as computer labs, model-making workshops, materials labs, and more. Studios and lecture halls have LCD projectors and screens, facilitating interactive teaching methods. Additionally, the campus has a robust ICT infrastructure with Wi-Fi connectivity, computers, printers, and plotters for students’ use.

*E-Library and Digital Repository: The institute offers access to an e-library and digital repository, providing students with e-resources, lecture videos, architectural movies, research materials, and publications. This facilitates self-directed learning and research endeavours.

*Open Educational Resources and Online Platforms: BMSSA provides access to open educational resources such as NPTEL, YouTube videos, TED talks, and e-journals through platforms like VTU E-Consortium. Faculty members utilize webinars and e-learning resources for effective teaching and knowledge enhancement.

*Institutional Email IDs and Online Portals: Students, faculty members, and office staff are provided with institutional email IDs and access to online portals for effective communication and academic management. This includes features like proctor allotment mapping, internal marks, attendance tracking, and transparency in academic performance status.

*Smart Boards and ICT Tools: The institute utilizes smart boards and other ICT tools to enhance teaching and learning experiences. These interactive technologies facilitate engaging classroom interactions and collaborative learning among students and faculty.

Fostering an International Outlook

Also, to prepare students for the global landscape of architecture and design practice, BMS School of Architecture offers a comprehensive approach that includes:

#Diverse Curriculum with Value-Added Certification Courses: In addition to the core curriculum, students have the opportunity to choose from a variety of certification courses, software training sessions, workshops, and seminars organized every semester. These courses are taught by industry experts and academic professionals, providing students with practical skills and knowledge aligned with international standards.

#Experiential Learning and Industry-Linked Modules: The curriculum at BMSSA emphasizes experiential learning and industry-linked modules, allowing students to explore their creative potential and gain practical experience in real-world projects. This approach ensures that students are prepared to tackle the dynamic requirements of the global architectural landscape.

#International Study Trips and Collaborations: Students can participate in international study trips to gain exposure to international trends and practices in architecture and design. BMSSA’s collaborations with international organizations and experts provide students with valuable insights and global perspectives, enriching their educational experience.

#Multi-Pronged Teaching Approach: The architecture course at BMSSA is designed to cater to the proficiency and passion of each student, ensuring personalized learning experiences. Through a multi-pronged teaching approach, students receive comprehensive training that equips them with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed globally.

#Integration of Industry Experts and Practical Experience: Industry experts regularly conduct classes and workshops to expose students to the latest developments and architectural trends. The campus’s collaboration with government and international organizations allows students to gain practical experience and insights into global architectural practices.

#Balanced Knowledge Ecosystem with Extra-Curricular Activities: BMSSA’s curriculum integrates extra-curricular activities that create a balanced knowledge ecosystem. These activities foster holistic development and encourage students to engage with diverse perspectives, enhancing their readiness to navigate the complexities of the global architectural landscape.

BMSSA Top Priority Over the Next Ten Years

The top priority for BMSSA over the next decade is to establish and strengthen the advanced research and consultancy cell. This initiative aligns with the institute’s commitment to promoting a research-driven educational environment and ensuring the employability and success of its students. By investing in state-of-the-art labs, fostering collaborations with industry partners, and providing opportunities for research and innovation, BMSSA aims to position itself as a leader in architectural education and contribute significantly to the advancement of the field nationally and globally.

Success Stories:

B.Arch Student Mr Swaminathan, bearing USN No.1BQ19AT111, had been in the Top 12th position out of 800+ entries received across the country in the interior design category at the

  • Nippon Paint AYDA Awards 2023, India Edition.
  • B. Arch student Mr Syed Affan, bearing USN No. 1BQ20AT089, received an Appreciation Award from CRDS Foundation for his commendable work in writing a book titled “The Proud City of Vijaypura in the Present Day”. This book was launched on 24th December 2023, the day of a big marathon event in the historical and Iconic city of Vijayapura named Vrukshathon Heritage Run, at Dr B R Ambedkar Stadium, Vijayapura.
  • Alumni Dr. Roopa Lakshmi Bhat, an Architect & Naturopathy Doctor (USN No. 1BQ15AT024), has been appointed as an Executive Member of the IIA (Indian Institute of Architects) Karnataka Chapter for 2023.
  • Alumni Student Mahesh N R, bearing USN No.1BQ11AT029, has been awarded the Entrepreneur of the Year award at Small Business Awards 2023, organised by Entrepreneur India & Franchise India Holdings Limited in New Delhi on 7th August 2023.
  • Ms. Sindu Bhat, an M. Arch (Urban Design) student at BMSSA, was awarded (Runner-up) the COA Awards for Excellence in Post-Graduate Thesis in Architecture – 2023.
  • Ms. Dhruthi S from B.Arch., bearing USN No.1BQ21AT020, has been selected to participate in Athletics (100 mts and 200 mts events) Southwest Zone Inter University Championship Nationals level and representing VTU for the first time, which was held at Physical Education and Sports University, Chennai from 09th to 12th Jan 2023.

Awards and Recognitions:

  • The Appreciation Award was received from Lion’s Club Kumarapark for the collaborative work in organizing The Blood Donation Camp held on December 26, 2023, at BMS School of Architecture.
  • Ranked as the 9th Best Architectural College in India by Education World India College Rankings Survey 2022.

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