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Los Angeles AA VS Jordan Mars 2.0 - Magnetic Suit Project by Anna Schwarz, Gloria Yan, William Qian & Zain AlHroub - Instructed by Julia Koerner and Kais Al-Rawi

Los Angeles

Mars 4.0

Saturday 3 – Friday 9 October 2020

MARS 4.0 will be a special edition in Los Angeles that builds up on five years of the Visiting School in Jordan investigating the Mars-like Wadi Rum desert. Los Angeles will serve as a platform to advance the design-research in dialogue with world-leading design, engineering, space and aeronautics experts.

Participants will research the natural ecology of the Red Planet and speculate on the design of future interventions that couple cutting-edge technology with research into natural morphologies and phenomena on Mars. Algorithmic and computational design methods will unveil material, spatial to urban potentials in design.

The eight-day programme will offer design-research units, specialist seminars in computational design and analysis platforms, and a series of masterclass lectures.


Applications will open once the dates have been confirmed, in the meantime you can register your interest in this programme by sending an email to the Visiting School Office.

1) You can make an application by completing the online application found under ‘Links and Downloads’ on the AA Visiting School page. If you are not able to make an online application, email the Visiting School Office for instructions to pay by bank transfer.

2) Once you complete the online application and make a full payment, you are registered to the programme. A CV or a portfolio is not required.

The deadline for applications is 4 September 2020.


All participants travelling from abroad are responsible for securing any visa required, and are advised to contact their home embassy early. After payment of fees, the AA School can provide a letter confirming participation in the workshop.


The Los Angeles MARS Visiting School requires a fee of £795 per participant, which includes a £60 Visiting membership fee.

The fees includes access to core workshop events:
- Design studio units
- Specialist software seminars
- Lecture series and guest programme

Fees do not include flights or accommodation, but an option to share hotel accommodation in Downtown Los Angeles will be made available to registered participants.Students need to bring their own laptops, digital equipment and model making tools. Please ensure this equipment is covered by your own insurance as the AA takes no responsibility for items lost or stolen at the workshop.


We accept a diverse range of participants with interest and expertise in Architecture, Engineering, Art and Design disciplines. The programme is open to students at undergraduate and graduate levels, PhD candidates and young professionals alike.


The Los Angeles will be hosted by Walter P Moore & Associates office in Downtown Los Angeles, located on the 21st floor of the Aon Tower. The programme will also organise a series of visits to institutions related to space and aeronautics within the Greater Los Angeles area.

Programme Head

Kais Al-Rawi is a registered architect and graduate of Ryerson University in Toronto. He holds a Masters Degree from the Architectural Association (AA) in London. He initiated the Jordan Visiting School in Jordan in 2014 and he has since then led the programme with a focus on cutting-edge technologies coupled with research into distinct ecologies of Jordan. Kais is based in Los Angeles and he is an Associate at the Los Angeles office of Walter P Moore & Associates. He works at the intersection between Architecture and Engineering within a Facades & Complex Structures practice delivering key projects within the Aviation, Sports, Tall Building & Cultural sectors.


Programme Head
Kais Al-Rawi

Head of Visiting School

Christopher Pierce

T +44 20 7887 4014
F +44 20 7414 0782

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Visiting School Prospectus


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The Architectural Association receives Taught Degree Awarding Powers by the Lords of Her Majesty’s Most Honourable Privy Council.

The Architectural Association (AA), the oldest independent school of architecture in the United Kingdom, is pleased to announce that it has been granted the power to award its own degrees. As of 1 October 2019, the AA has the right to establish new academic programmes and degree awards and is working to create some of the world’s most pioneering courses in architecture to shape and build the future.

Taught Degree Awarding Powers (TDAP) give UK higher education institutions the right to award bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Prospective students worldwide can apply to the AA Foundation Course (Foundation Diploma), Experimental Programme BA(Hons), Diploma Programme (MArch), and nine taught postgraduate programmes encompassing History and Critical Thinking in Architecture (MA), Projective Cities (Taught MPhil) and Sustainable Environmental Design (MSc/MArch), amongst others.

AA Director, Eva Franch said, ‘since our founding in 1847 we have never ceased to create new horizons, institutionally and academically. This is a significant milestone for the AA and demonstrates how we have grown and progressed as an institution that has always valued independence. Receiving TDAP marks a new era for our institution; these are exciting times for the AA. The process has required considerable work from all members of staff and students. I would like to take this opportunity to credit them for this major achievement’.

President of the AA Council, Victoria Thornton added, ‘the TDAP process has recognised our strong governance, academic standards, scholarship and teaching as well as the environment supporting the delivery of taught higher education programmes’.

The School’s application for Taught Degree Awarding Powers was supported by the Architects Registration Board, the Royal Institute of British Architects and The Open University.