Advanced Studies in Light & Lighting


Advanced Studies in Light & Lighting

“Lighting Design as social practice in urban communities”.

ETCS: 16 (according to the Bologna European Credit Transfer system).


This course aims at providing the fundamental light tools to understand and develop skills and abilities in full-scale applications in which perception and visual evaluation of the physical surroundings is important.

The methodologies and tools to be applied in the lighting design process include a strong theoretical basis as well as practical exercises. Expanding the vocabulary of lighting, introducing new terms, technologies and concepts, which are going to be applied at an urban level, will give the students the opportunity to go deeper into the subject. Measuring light (Luminance and illuminance levels) will allow students to establish an understanding between light levels and visual appearance.

The design process to produce conceptual lighting designs and luminaire product designs covering the appraisal of lighting, luminaire and design projects will be explored. The convivial city towards a strategy of dynamic urban lighting will be a basis to develop a coherent lighting design proposal for a specific area in the city of Almada.

Introducing social research value in lighting design projects and to think more systematically about the social contexts and uses of design is a demand students will be strongly advice to pursuit. More than LD as part of constructing assemblages like buildings and streets, our fields of work clearly involve integrated relationships between materials, technologies and social practices and people; they are part of social arrangements. It is relevant to address the complexity of urban space structures and all their social components. The need to integrate social thinking through the design process is part of the strategy.

The students´ final projects will be shown in a small exhibition to be presented at the City Hall of Almada as part of their training as future professional LD consultants.


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Programme duration:

January and February 2017



Fridays and Saturdays from 9.00 a.m - 1.00 p.m and from 2.30 p.m. - 6.30 p.m.

Tuition fee

EU/UK/EEA/Swiss citizens: 1500 € (International taxes/fees included);

Non-(EU/UK/EEA/Swiss) citizens: 2000 € (International taxes/fees included)


Opening: 15th July 2016

Closure: 31st October 2016

Curriculum / Structure

Lighting Design as social practice in urban communities

This particular intensive course was designed in order to enable international and working students to attend it and configure it with their available time. Classes and seminaries will, therefore, be concentrated in two full days a week (Fridays and Saturdays) for two months and according to the Bologna European Credit Transfer system. (ETCS).

The course (82 hours in total) will be taught in English by four Professors: two from the Department of Electronic Engineering of the Faculty of Science and Technology (FCT) of the Universidade Nova de Lisboa (16 hours), one from the Department of Sociology of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities (FCSH) of the Universidade Nova de Lisboa (4 hours) and an external Professor (the coordinator of the course) from the field of Urban Lighting Design and member of the IALD. A Professor from a European University will be invited to deliver a seminar and give tutorials.

The Advanced Studies Course in Light and Lighting is organized into three Modules: In each of them theoretical and / or practical assessment will be done in a 0/20 scale.

Core Modules:

Module I. Light Theory and Principals (LT)

Establishing theoretical relations between the physics and light radiation.

Acquiring wide and basic light and lighting vocabulary.

Module II. Advanced Lighting Design: Creativity Process (LD)

Expanding the understanding of concept and design. Complexity of nightscapes.

Full scale applications. 

Module III. Lighting Practice: Integrating Social Research in Design (LP)

Thinking more systematically about the social context, needs and uses of design.

Final Lighting Design Project.


Entrance requirements for the 2016/2017 academic year

Vacancies for 2016/2017:


Admission rules:

BA in Engineering, Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Design.

Mastering of the English language.

Personal written statement.

If shortlisted, candidates maybe called for an interview.

Course coordinator:

Professor M.J.Pinto-Coelho, BAA, MSc LL, Ph.D.

Fellow LLD-APDII/ Laboratório de Lighting Designers;

Independent Lighting Architect & Designer | Consultora Internacional | IALD Professional Member (International Association of Lighting Designers);

Comité Executivo da EILD (Encuentro IberoAmericano de Lighting Designers);

Invited friend of ICA;

Concepteurs Lumière sans Frontières

Course Coordinator's Contact:

About the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (DEEC) is organized into six technical-and-scientifically coherent scientific areas, namely Energy and Electrical Machines, Control and Decision, Digital Systems, Robotics and Integrated Manufacture, Electronics and Telecommunications. Electrical Engineering is the largest department at NOVA School of Science and Technology with 40 faculty and over 1100 undergraduate, masters, and doctoral students.

Our faculty and students continue to advance the state-of-the-art, define new directions for electrical engineering and develop new technologies to help address critical societal challenges. Perhaps even more important is our unceasing commitment to our students, helping them learn, grow, develop and achieve their goals, whether it is becoming a professor, an entrepreneur or joining industry.

There are many advantages to joining Electrical Engineering as a student. We hope to be part of your success.

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