Earth and Straw construction in Morocco

Ref: 10003259


First year Architectural Technology students enrolled on Building Design 1 (ARCH1067) and MSc Architectural Technology students are eligible to participate in this opportunity. The maximum number of places on this opportunity is 25 and the minimum the trip will go ahead with is 10. DMU staff will be accompanying the group.

DMU students are only eligible to receive one academic-led trip bursary per year. Please check our eligibility criteria for further details.


Earth and Straw construction in Morocco is an experiential trip that aims to provide students of Architectural Technology BSc a hands-on experience and to gain application orientated knowledge in building with earth and straw construction techniques. Students will be able to learn and apply traditional building techniques directly from local builders and will be able to put these techniques into practice. At the same time, students will work in researching, recording, documentation and promoting heritage and local architecture. In addition, students will also participate in other cultural activities such as the visit to communities and sites of historical and cultural relevance.

During the study trip, the students will learn 3 pillars of sustainability: human, social and, environmental and how they affect the state of local communities. The students will experience the importance of these pillars in holding up a successful community and will learn how interconnected they are.

The study trip involves a hands-on experience in earth construction with both traditional and modern earth techniques. This experience aims to give students a series of physical inputs such as awareness in traditional construction, use of natural materials in construction and sustainability.

Cultural activities

An experiential journey through the history and the cultural identity of Southern Morocco, learning the ancient earth and straw building techniques and exploring the ancient traditions of the Berber tribes. It is a study trip that blends together the pleasure of discovery, the charm of southern Morocco landscapes and the opportunity to learn ancient construction techniques. Following the example of local builders and accompanied by expert instructors, we’ll plunge our hands into a world still capable to live in perfect balance with nature, creating artifacts and monuments of exceptional beauty through the art of wisely mixing and working available natural resources. The magnificent Ksar of Ait Ben Haddou will be the starting point of this experience through the berber culture involving all senses, through hands on workshops, practical examples, meetings with the community, guided visits and excursions along the Atlas mountains and the famous route of One Thousand Kasbahs.

Travel and accommodation

Accommodation, travel, workshops and visits  will be booked by the faculty for this opportunity, and students will be expected to pay the full amount following confirmation of their place. The #DMUglobal bursary will be deducted from the overall cost of the trip.

Contact details

Visa information

In order to participate in this trip, you are responsible for ensuring that you meet the Moroccan immigration requirements. EU nationals will not require a visa to travel to Morocco for a duration less than 3 months.

The #DMUglobal team can provide visa support letters as required, and proof of enrolment can be obtained from the Student Gateway. You must ensure that you apply for your visa as soon as you have been formally accepted to this opportunity by #DMUglobal. You are responsible for checking processing times and meeting all application requirements in order to ensure that you receive your visa prior to departure. Be aware that immigration decisions are made by individual embassies.

Key Information

  • Departure date: Sunday 15 March 2020
  • Return date: Sunday 22 March 2020
  • Estimated cost of flights, UK and in-country transfers , accommodation, workshops and visits: £800
  • Students will also be required to pay for:  food and drink, and visa (if applicable)
  • #DMUglobal bursary: £400
  • Deadline for application: Tuesday 29 October 2019 9am