Great Cities

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Great Cities

  • Host University

    Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

  • Location

    Amsterdam, The Netherlands

  • Area of Study

    History, Urban Studies and Planning

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    This course has the following learning goals:
    1. learn to know historical urban patterns and meanings.
    2. learn to identify the relation between urban patterns and architectural monuments.
    3. learn to read plans of cities and architectural monuments.
    4. learn to make a visual and spatial analysis of a city.
    5. practice to compare urban patterns and relate them to social, political and religious ideas.
    6. practice in writing an essay of academic structure and level, following a specific stylesheet (VU Department of Art and Culture).

    In this course students learn the history and meaning (social, political, religious) of patterns and elements of urban form, and of their principal architectural monuments. The examples that will be discussed cover the entire world and go back until the first millennium BC.

     Lectures, excursion, individual research / self study. 100% attendance is required. Whoever misses the first meeting might be expelled from the course.

    Final grade: between 0 and 10. 
    Assignments, exam, 

    The course is not aimed at designers and does not teach one ‘how to design a city’. It is aimed at theoretical reflection about the history and functioning of cities. If you are not a humanities student, or do not have affinity with the scientific historical discipline, you are advised to choose another course.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Some courses may require additional fees.


This site uses cookies to store information on your computer. Some are essential to make our site work; others help us improve the user experience. By using the site, you consent to the placement of these cookies.

Read our Privacy Policy to learn more.