Website Review

Global Architectural History Teaching Collaborative

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

MIT Architectural Review is an impressive collection of learning materials on the history of architectural forms throughout the world. The website features an interactive world globe with links to modules on a variety of topics. Perhaps most interesting and relevant for world history teachers and students are the modules that make connections across space and time such as the module on Architectural links between the Islamic World and Latin America which is available in English and Spanish. Another module explores the global history of coffeehouses and teahouses through their architecture. Yet another entitled, "Between Constantinople and Karakorum" deals with the transition from wooden structures to masonry in the Eastern Europe from the late classical period up to the 16th century and includes an exploration of the influence of Byzantine Empire, Germanic lands, Scandinavia and the Eurasian steppes. Another modules explores global cities in cinema and finds connects between how cities such as Los Angeles and Tokyo, Berlin and Paris are portrayed on screen. There are also separate lectures on Shanghai and Mumbai. Each of the modules feature a lecture or a series of lectures.

While there are a few video lectures available on the site, most of the material consists of slides and notes. Unfortunately these have to be downloaded into large ZIP files although they can be accessed through a "preview slides" option. These files have PowerPoint and PDF versions of the slides which include lecture abstract and notes. These formats contrast with the functionality of the rest of the site, but some teachers may find it to be more convenient to be able to save the material on their own devices or upload them easily to an LMS. The video lectures are fewer in number, but do contain topics of interest to world history teachers especially a two-part lecture on the architectural connections between port cities around the globe. Overall the MIT Architectural Review is an incredible collection of resources for any teacher looking to seriously incorporate architectural history into their world history course.

Reviewed by Nate Sleeter, George Mason University

How to Cite This Source

"Global Architectural History Teaching Collaborative," in in World History Commons, [accessed July 1, 2022]
A drawing of a building with a dome in the center
“Perhaps most interesting and relevant for world history teachers and students are the modules that make connections across space and time.”