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The introductory courses are hosted by the Faculty of the Built Environment (FoBE) at Uganda Martyrs University. They are designed to foster critical and creative thinking in climate design across sub-Saharan Africa. These courses are in-line with the faculty’s objective of understanding the principles related to the achievement and development of our built environment. These courses are open to all professionals and students of the built environment that are willing and open to learning about climate responsive design.

Basic Principles in Climatic Design

Level 1

The design and the management of a building for climatic / thermal effectiveness depend on understanding the physics of the interaction of the external conditions, the building's 'fabric' and interior spaces, and the relation this has not only to human physiology but to human culture. 

The issue in climatically responsive and responsible design is to find ways in which locally available materials - those of least environmental cost - can be combined to provide acceptable thermal conditions in buildings throughout the year, in accordance with the inhabitants' requirements (for example, in terms of the use of the buildings at different times of the year and of the day). The physics of the interaction of buildings and climate is of course universal, but the ways in which it can be applied to provide comfortable and appropriate human environments depends on local conditions.  

The purpose of this Course is to introduce you to the basic principles required to design climatically appropriate buildings. The course covers a brief overview of the principles of climate, environment, and energy.

Also included with this course is a Glossary of frequently used terms to help you along the way. To complete the course, you need to successfully complete three simple quizzes to evaluate your understanding of the content.

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Fundamentals of Climate Change

Level 1

Climate is one of the least appreciated aspects, considered when designing, planning, and constructing buildings in  East and Central Africa. This introductory course will teach and remind you about the basic-overlooked climate issues that are relevant to the built environment. Reviewing global, regional concerns and regional climate issues, will bring you closer to how to respond to the environmental crises that we face.  


The first section of the course introduces participants to climate studies. An overview of climate and the built environment; and climate and the cities is explored. Participants will be introduced to some of the challenges of climate change.

Then we address human design and construction processes that have an impact on climate. You will be introduced to sustainable material considerations and their use in various building components.  Material choices are often driven by cost and fashion, which can result in unsustainable and climate inappropriate buildings.

Finally, participants will be urged to confront the design challenge by considering bioclimatic aspects of design. You will learn about the basics of solar shading, passive ventilation, natural light as applied to buildings and how they produce meaningful designs. Since the built environment is often a complex negotiation with the environment, you will review the opportunities and threats surrounding energy generation, water management and waste management.

Coming Soon.

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