Twin Cities campus
 
Twin Cities Campus

Architecture M.Arch.

School of Architecture
College of Design
Link to a list of faculty for this program.
Contact Information
School of Architecture, College of Design, University of Minnesota, 145 Rapson Hall, 89 Church Street S.E., Minneapolis, MN 55455 (612-624-7866; fax: 624-5743)
  • Program Type: Master's
  • Requirements for this program are current for Spring 2018
  • Length of program in credits: 59 to 90
  • This program does not require summer semesters for timely completion.
  • Degree: Master of Architecture
Along with the program-specific requirements listed below, please read the General Information section of this website for requirements that apply to all major fields.
Architecture encompasses the making and study of the buildings and environments that we inhabit. The concerns of architecture involve a wide variety of areas of study, including the art of representing built projects through drawings and computer graphics; the technology of building structure, building materials, and natural and mechanical systems; the history, theory, and art of making, using, and understanding buildings as cultural artifacts for human use; and the practice of architecture in the context of sustainable environmental systems, urban form, and business economics. The School of Architecture offers one accredited professional degree, the Master of Architecture (M.Arch.), and a non-professional research degree, the Master of Science (M.S.) in architecture, with four potential tracks: heritage conservation and preservation, metropolitan design, research practices, and sustainable design. The Master of Architecture degree is the accredited three-year professional program that prepares students for licensure and practice in the discipline of architecture as a speculative, analytic, and investigative endeavor. Through rigorous methods of inquiry—developed in the design studio, lectures, and seminars—students acquire the breadth of knowledge required of the professional architect, including: the techniques and processes of representation, communication, and analysis; the history and theory of making architecture and urban form for human use; and the technology, systems, processes, and economics of construction and practice. The 90-credit M.Arch. professional degree program is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). A portfolio for admission is required. The Master of Science in architecture is a nonprofessional degree offering advanced studies and research methods in heritage conservation and preservation, metropolitan design, research practices, or sustainable design. The nonprofessional M.S. in architecture seeks advanced students from architecture, building science, art history, geography, archaeology, landscape architecture, environmental design, or related disciplines to pursue multidisciplinary graduate study and research in sustainable building practices and historic preservation. The School of Architecture also offers a concurrent degree program that combines the M.Arch. professional degree and the M.S. in architecture. Students may take a total of 24 credits in common between the two academic programs. See information on the M.S. in architecture for degree requirements.
Program Delivery
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Prerequisites for Admission
The preferred undergraduate GPA for admittance to the program is 3.00.
Applicants must submit their test score(s) from the following:
  • GRE
International applicants must submit score(s) from one of the following tests:
  • TOEFL
    • Internet Based - Total Score: 79
    • Internet Based - Writing Score: 21
    • Internet Based - Reading Score: 19
    • Paper Based - Total Score: 550
  • IELTS
    • Total Score: 6.5
  • MELAB
    • Final score: 80
Key to test abbreviations (GRE, TOEFL, IELTS, MELAB).
For an online application or for more information about graduate education admissions, see the General Information section of this website.
Program Requirements
Plan C: Plan C requires 59 to 90 major credits and 0 credits outside the major. There is no final exam. A capstone project is required.
Capstone Project: The Master's Final Project is a 10-credit studio-based design exploration under the supervision of a studio faculty mentor.
This program may not be completed with a minor.
Use of 4xxx courses towards program requirements is not permitted.
A minimum GPA of 2.80 is required for students to remain in good standing.
At least 4 semesters must be completed before filing a Degree Program Form.
The professional M.Arch. curriculum requires completion of a total of 90 credits (80 course credits and a 10-credit design studio Plan C Master's Final Project). M.Arch. students can expect to complete the program in six semesters (three years), including the Master's Final Project. Advanced placement into the second year is possible for students with a Bachelor of Science or other pre-professional degree and excellent English language proficiency. The fall semesters include integrated core curriculum of studio, building and environmental technologies, history-theory, or digital methods. The spring semesters are organized as half-semester elective modules in studio-like projects and seminars in urban/suburban-rural, building technology and sustainable practices, and history-theory-culture themes. May term study abroad options are available for qualified students in any summer semester.
Required courses
ARCH 5411 - Principles of Design Theory (3.0 cr)
ARCH 5412 - Architecture: A Global and Cultural History (3.0 cr)
ARCH 5550 - Topics in Technology (1.0-4.0 cr)
ARCH 5561 - Tech 1, Structures for Building (2.0 cr)
ARCH 5562 - Tech 2, Intro to Building Technology (2.0 cr)
ARCH 5563 - Tech 3: Advanced Building Technology Integrated Building Systems (0.0-2.0 cr)
ARCH 5564 - Tech 4: Building Structural Systems (0.0-2.0 cr)
ARCH 5621 - Professional Practice in Architecture (3.0 cr)
ARCH 8251 - Graduate Architectural Design I (9.0 cr)
ARCH 8253 - Graduate Architectural Design III (9.0 cr)
ARCH 8255 - Graduate Architectural Design V (6.0 cr)
ARCH 8299 - Master's Final Project (10.0 cr)
Project modules
Take 16 credits (four courses) of project modules.
ARCH 5250 - Advanced Topics in Design (1.0-6.0 cr)
or ARCH 8254 - Technical Applications in Design (4.0 cr)
or ARCH 5521 - Material Investigation: Concrete (4.0 cr)
or ARCH 5523 - Material Investigation: Steel and Glass (4.0 cr)
or ARCH 5527 - Material Investigations: Stone and Water (4.0 cr)
or ARCH 5539 - Daylighting and Architecture Design (4.0 cr)
Catalysts
Take exactly 2 course(s) from the following:
· ARCH 5110 - Architecture as Catalyst (1.0 cr)
Arch electives
Take 18 credits of arch electives.
Arch 5xxx
or Arch 8xxx
Advanced Standing
Students who completed a BS in Architecture may have first-year coursework waived.
Required Courses
Students are required to complete the following courses:
ARCH 5563 - Tech 3: Advanced Building Technology Integrated Building Systems (0.0-2.0 cr)
ARCH 5564 - Tech 4: Building Structural Systems (0.0-2.0 cr)
ARCH 5621 - Professional Practice in Architecture (3.0 cr)
ARCH 8253 - Graduate Architectural Design III (9.0 cr)
ARCH 5550 - Topics in Technology (1.0-4.0 cr)
ARCH 8255 - Graduate Architectural Design V (6.0 cr)
ARCH 8299 - Master's Final Project (10.0 cr)
Project modules
Take 8 credits (four courses) of project modules.
ARCH 5250 - Advanced Topics in Design (1.0-6.0 cr)
or ARCH 8254 - Technical Applications in Design (4.0 cr)
Catalysts
Take exactly 1 course(s) from the following:
· ARCH 5110 - Architecture as Catalyst (1.0 cr)
Arch electives
Take 15 credits of arch electives.
Arch 5xxx
or Arch 8xxx
Joint- or Dual-degree Coursework:
M.Arch/M.S.-Architecture Students may take a total of 24 credits in common among the academic programs.
 
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ARCH 5411 - Principles of Design Theory
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Principles of design and their instrumentation. How and why architecture theory is generated. Types and significance of formal analysis. Theoretical positions and modes of criticism. prereq: M Arch major or instr consent
ARCH 5412 - Architecture: A Global and Cultural History
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course examines the history of architecture from a global perspective, addressing a variety of traditions and geographical locations, and following their interconnections and exchanges.
ARCH 5550 - Topics in Technology
Credits: 1.0 -4.0 [max 12.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Selected topics in architecture technology, e.g., construction, environmental management, energy performance, lighting, materials.
ARCH 5561 - Tech 1, Structures for Building
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
Role of structure in architectural design. Common systems found throughout history. Review systems to identify parameters that influence structural decisions. prereq: M Arch major or instr consent
ARCH 5562 - Tech 2, Intro to Building Technology
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
Origin/development of architectural idea. Designs as direct means of representing our underlying intentions. prereq: M.Arch or instr consent
ARCH 5563 - Tech 3: Advanced Building Technology Integrated Building Systems
Credits: 0.0 -2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
Logic of integrating building systems. Improving understanding of/thinking critically about integration principles, theories, practice, application. Identifying/working through problems project architect must address. prereq: M.Arch or instr consent
ARCH 5564 - Tech 4: Building Structural Systems
Credits: 0.0 -2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
Main concepts related to building structures. Basic knowledge of flow of forces. Review of rules for sizing structures. Calculations to understand systems behavior. Knowledge/tools to design buildings considering structure within design process. prereq: M.Arch or instr consent
ARCH 5621 - Professional Practice in Architecture
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Legal, ethical, business, and practical requirements of architectural practice. Contemporary and historical models of contract formation, business principles, accounting, project management, design services, and marketing. prereq: M Arch major or instr consent
ARCH 8251 - Graduate Architectural Design I
Credits: 9.0 [max 9.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Design projects focus on fundamental issues of space/form/ light/materiality in relation to human habitation. Design as a process of exploration/inquiry. Modes/media of representation, their critical impact. prereq: MArch or instr consent
ARCH 8253 - Graduate Architectural Design III
Credits: 9.0 [max 9.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Issues of design process, representation, programming, technology, and urban relations. prereq: [8251, MArch] or instr consent
ARCH 8255 - Graduate Architectural Design V
Credits: 6.0 [max 12.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Fundamental architectural problems involving design as a creative inquiry. Individual/collaborative effort. prereq: [8254, grad Arch major] or instr consent
ARCH 8299 - Master's Final Project
Credits: 10.0 [max 10.0]
Grading Basis: S-N only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Final studio project for Plan C master's. Measures knowledge of architecture and ability to conduct research for design proposal, communicate in visual/written representations. Proposal, graphic presentation of project. prereq: Plan C, MArch
ARCH 5250 - Advanced Topics in Design
Credits: 1.0 -6.0 [max 24.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Advanced topics in architectural design.
ARCH 8254 - Technical Applications in Design
Credits: 4.0 [max 8.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Design potential inherent in technical development process of design project. Testing concepts, developing details, integrating building systems. Structural bay enclosure, cost considerations, regulatory compliance. Building-information modeling, analog/digital representations in architecture document production. prereq: [8253, MArch major] or dept consent
ARCH 5521 - Material Investigation: Concrete
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Design projects identify common problems/improvements, investigate alternatives, and develop solutions where concrete is primary building material. prereq: MArch or MS
ARCH 5523 - Material Investigation: Steel and Glass
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Design projects identify common problems and improvements, investigate alternatives and develop solutions where steel and glass are the primary building materials. prereq: Grad student
ARCH 5527 - Material Investigations: Stone and Water
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Design projects identify common problems/improvements, investigate alternatives, and develop solutions where wood is primary building material. prereq: M.Arch or M.S.
ARCH 5539 - Daylighting and Architecture Design
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Ecological design approaches that combine ecological, physiological, and experiential aspects to enhance relationship to place. How formal, aesthetic, and experiential aspects of daylighting support/foster sustainable architectural design. prereq: M Arch major
ARCH 5110 - Architecture as Catalyst
Credits: 1.0 [max 3.0]
Prerequisites: M.Arch
Grading Basis: S-N only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Topical workshops on design methods, theories, or emerging practices. prereq: M.Arch
ARCH 5563 - Tech 3: Advanced Building Technology Integrated Building Systems
Credits: 0.0 -2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
Logic of integrating building systems. Improving understanding of/thinking critically about integration principles, theories, practice, application. Identifying/working through problems project architect must address. prereq: M.Arch or instr consent
ARCH 5564 - Tech 4: Building Structural Systems
Credits: 0.0 -2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
Main concepts related to building structures. Basic knowledge of flow of forces. Review of rules for sizing structures. Calculations to understand systems behavior. Knowledge/tools to design buildings considering structure within design process. prereq: M.Arch or instr consent
ARCH 5621 - Professional Practice in Architecture
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Legal, ethical, business, and practical requirements of architectural practice. Contemporary and historical models of contract formation, business principles, accounting, project management, design services, and marketing. prereq: M Arch major or instr consent
ARCH 8253 - Graduate Architectural Design III
Credits: 9.0 [max 9.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Issues of design process, representation, programming, technology, and urban relations. prereq: [8251, MArch] or instr consent
ARCH 5550 - Topics in Technology
Credits: 1.0 -4.0 [max 12.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Selected topics in architecture technology, e.g., construction, environmental management, energy performance, lighting, materials.
ARCH 8255 - Graduate Architectural Design V
Credits: 6.0 [max 12.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Fundamental architectural problems involving design as a creative inquiry. Individual/collaborative effort. prereq: [8254, grad Arch major] or instr consent
ARCH 8299 - Master's Final Project
Credits: 10.0 [max 10.0]
Grading Basis: S-N only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Final studio project for Plan C master's. Measures knowledge of architecture and ability to conduct research for design proposal, communicate in visual/written representations. Proposal, graphic presentation of project. prereq: Plan C, MArch
ARCH 5250 - Advanced Topics in Design
Credits: 1.0 -6.0 [max 24.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Advanced topics in architectural design.
ARCH 8254 - Technical Applications in Design
Credits: 4.0 [max 8.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Design potential inherent in technical development process of design project. Testing concepts, developing details, integrating building systems. Structural bay enclosure, cost considerations, regulatory compliance. Building-information modeling, analog/digital representations in architecture document production. prereq: [8253, MArch major] or dept consent
ARCH 5110 - Architecture as Catalyst
Credits: 1.0 [max 3.0]
Prerequisites: M.Arch
Grading Basis: S-N only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Topical workshops on design methods, theories, or emerging practices. prereq: M.Arch