Margarida Yin

Photo of Margarida Yin

Position Emeritus Professor

Areas of Expertise

Urban design


My primary training and work experience is in architecture, urban design, and construction. Design Logic Inc. introduced me to the possibilities of CAD for the design fields. I have taught at the college level in various capacities in the subject areas of architectural design, practice, ECS, graphics and architectural history at the University of California, Berkeley, at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

I am a licensed architect and have worked internationally in Taiwan, Brazil, Hong Kong, and United States with diverse projects of different scales and types. My practice experience includes planning, design, and technical document production for a variety of building types, including single and multi-family housing, educational, industrial, commercial, recreational, hotel, retail, dining and museum projects.

My teaching has included the subject areas of architectural design, community design, competition design, graphics and architectural history. Furthermore, I bring national and international student design competitions into the studio , so to encourage to strive their best and compete with confidence. So far, my 9 students won the National and International competition design awards, and, other 4 won the Best of Show, Cal Poly Architecture School design awards.

My diverse cultural background has been a strong asset professionally and in teaching. I speak, read and write 3 different languages, Chinese, Portuguese, and English. Most importantly, I have been bringing the richness of a diverse cultural experience, East and West, to her teaching. This is becoming ever more important in a globalized world. 

Teaching Philosophy

My design teaching philosophy is to encourage, guide and motivate students to explore their own talents, and develop their critical thinking skills. I make students confront real clients and settings by emphasizing community design, bridging the gap between clients, the community, the profession and academia.


Educational Credentials:

B. Arch., University of Mackenzie, Sao Paulo, Brazil   1975
M. Arch., University of California, Berkeley   1979

Teaching Experience:

Lecturer, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, CA  1989-1995 & 1997-present
Assisted in Design Courses, Cuesta College, San Luis Obispo, CA  2003-2009
Lecturer, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO  1983-1986
Assisted in Design Courses, University of California, Berkeley, CA  1979

Professional Experience:

Owner and Architect, residential projects, SLO, CA, Oahu, HI, Seattle, WA, Berkeley, CA, Sao Paulo, Brazil, Taipei,Taiwan  1975-present
Architect, BFGC Architects and Planners, Inc. SLO, CA  2000-2002
Architect, International Design Center-University of HI. Taipei, Taiwan.   1996
Architect, TSL/Merchant design group   1995
Architect, Architectural Consulting, Waihula Residential Development Corporation, Oahu, HI  1996
Architectural Designer, Shen/Glass architects, Berkeley, CA  1987
Architectural Designer Gap, Gap Design Group, San Francisco, CA  1986
Architectural Designer, Dewitt & Architects. Boulder, CO  1984
Architectural Designer, Rosall Remmen & Cares Architects and Planners. Boulder, CO  1983
Architectural Designer, YRM International. Hong Kong  1982
Architectural designer, Design Logic Inc., Oakland, CA  1981-82
Architectural Designer, Fisher Friedman Associates, San Francisco, CA  1980-81
Architect, G. D. Architect. Sao Paulo, Brazil  1977-78
Architect, Hayes Bosworth Ltda. Sao Paulo, Brazil  1975-77


Registered architect in Brazil, California and Hawaii.

Professional Memberships:

American Institute of Architects
Chinese Professional Association
California Architects Board
Hawaii Architects Board
Board of Architects from Brazil


Selected Publications and Recent Research:

  • Community Projects I Design Studios, in progress
  • Competition projects/ Design Studios, in progress
  • Globalization and Cultural Sensitivity in Architectural Education, presented at the HICAH Hawaii International Conference in Arts & Humanities conference; published in the proceedings, 2014
  • Children’s play in the urban setting, co-authored with Prof. Christopher Yip, Ph.D., at the conference of Making Cities Livable; 1990.
  • Role of CAD in the Design process, co-authored with professor Ray McCall, Ph.D., published by Design Methodology and Research. 1986.

Selected Grants:

  • Travel Fellowship (2008): 2nd/3rd/4th year travel fellowship awarded to Yin 3rd year studio. This allowed me to take my students to China to observe and experience the impact of the Globalization in Beijing and Shanghai, the 2 major influenced metropolitan cities, just before the 2008 Olympic Games.
  • Community Design Course Development Grant (2004 & 2014): 3rd year sustainable design course development and its implementation for the Fall 2004. 3rd year community design course development and its implementation for the Fall 2014.

Selected Activities:

  • Design of an Outdoor Playground for United Methodist Children’s Center
  • Set up a design competition for an outdoor play structure for SLO Children’s Museum
  • Chair, Cal Poly Women’s Professional Group
  • Vice President, Chinese Professional Group in SLO
  • Founding Member, Chinese School for children in SLO
  • Planning Committee, Asian Pacific Islander Faculty & Staff Association, Cal Poly
  • Senior Member, Cal Poly Women’s Club
  • Participating Member, Diversity Learning Objectives Workshop
  • Senior Member, Central Coast Chinese Professional Association

Selected Awards:

  • Teaching Award, CFA Lecturer Teaching Award for the Excellence of Students Performances, 2013


Updated 09.02.2020

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