Digital media and integrated information systems are an integral part of the School’s curriculum. The School provides students with a high-quality and robust information infrastructure, including cloud-based personal storage for each student and unlimited network storage for individual classes and studios. The School has its own proprietary digital media facilities that consist of cloud-based servers for high-quality distributed information systems, two advanced computer labs, an imaging and 3D scanning lab, a printing lab with more than fifty 3D printers, and dedicated printing rooms and plotting clusters outfitted with photocopiers and large-format plotters on each studio floor. In addition, dedicated laser cutter rooms are found on each studio floor.
All students are provided with a high-end workstation, preloaded with a wide array of software and integrated design tools, and two LCD monitors. The School also provides facilities and resources for students’ design, research, computational, communication, and fabrication needs. In addition, wireless access points are located throughout the studios and classrooms to allow students, if they desire, to supplement their school-supplied computer with their own laptop. The School provides large mobile LCD screens with workstations located in the review spaces. Available for checkout at no cost are digital cameras, drawing tablets, camcorders, and more.
Students at the School also have access to the Digital Media Center for the Arts (DMCA) at 149 York Street, a multimedia facility that was created to explore new areas of education and cross-disciplinary interaction that result when traditional art collides with the computer age.
Graduate and undergraduate students use the School’s fabrication shops in support of studio and course work assignments, as well as for independent projects. They include fully equipped facilities for building models, fabricating furniture, sculpting, and exploring building systems. Students work with a wide variety of materials, including wood and wood products, plastics, and ferrous and nonferrous metals. Beyond the normal fabricating equipment and tools usually found in wood and metal shops, the School’s equipment includes laser cutters, a waterjet cutter, three-axis CNC mills, a five-axis robotic-arm CNC mill with a six-foot reach, a digitally controlled foam cutter, and plastic 3-D printers. Students with shop experience may apply to the fabrication shop’s coordinator for positions as shop monitors.
In addition to these facilities in the School of Architecture, Yale has a machine shop in the Chemistry Lab that offers a course on machining. Gibbs Lab offers machining services to students at reasonable rates and sells a range of industrial materials. The New Haven area boasts a large number of suppliers of all types of materials.
All incoming students take the Summer Shops Techniques Course during the week before classes begin. This intensive course teaches students how to work safely in the shop while exposing them to a wide range of tools and procedures. During the year, staff is available to assist students with their projects. Individual instruction is always available from the staff and monitors. First-year M.Arch. I students use the fabrication shops to fabricate elements for the Building Project.