Educating future architects - this may be a little weird


I'm a big advocate for those doing the M.Arch. 1 in 3+ years.  It is the road less traveled and it introduces some additional stresses not experienced by the 5 year or 4+2 year right after high school crowd.  In making posts addressing those who were shopping within the  last year, I've clicked on the curricula of various programs.  I've seen programs I thought were unduly long and/or not balanced enough ... in my opinion.  I don't sit around and make spreadsheets like this!  I've toyed with this over time.  Basically, it's a combination of features from the 3 year programs from UVa and UMich (both for their summer start), Kansas (second "non-tech" summer), UNM (system synthesis course in 3rd year), Colorado-Denver (internship credit), and Arizona State (3 structures courses).

Some basic features:

  • Can be completed in 3 calendar years
  • Summers are a studio plus an extra seminar (in which there are 2 topics, split in half sessions) and NO technology
  • Uses the first summer after year 1, since students wouldn't be that seasoned for an internship like they would after the 2nd year in such a program
  • 17 credits in 1st year and very common 15/16 credit loads in 2nd and 3rd years
  • Distribution:  Design 43%, Bldg. Sci. and Struct. 23%, History/Theory/Urban 12%, Supporting information 9%, and Electives 13%

Any thoughts ...

Jun 22, 13 11:54 pm

So ... bump ... hiccup ... no comments on this M.Arch. 1 curriculum aimed to put students with unrelated backgrounds through in 3 calendar years? (Image attached).

Jun 30, 13 8:16 pm

An architecture program which requires twice as much structures/building tech as it does history/theory would seem to have particular partisan agenda. After seeing that I lost interest, in part because such a program would be incompatible with my own interests/agenda. If this program is supposed to be an end-all and be-all solution then perhaps it should offer more flexibility to accommodate a range of diverse student interests.

Jun 30, 13 11:32 pm

Thanks for the critique, snail.  I see how the percentages look alarming.  In this same stretch M.Arch. program:

Ariz State has 2 const., 2 envir. tech, and 3 structures courses.  I show one more.

UMich* has 2 const, 2 envir. tech, and 2 structures courses, but ask that you take a systems and structures "selective."  I show about the same in total.

Also, within 5 electives, 1 is to be in theory, though all of them could be as well

I was just having fun with this.  Since I like looking at maps, charts, and airplane and train schedules (!) to some degree, curricular maps in something I've studied interest me as well.

*if currently shopping, UMich is the college town/suburban program that would interest me, and CU-Denver, UNM, and Ariz State would be the urban programs I would like, since they all use a pretty full summer term and 6 semesters. 

Jul 1, 13 1:27 am


Thanks.  I see that they want 24 cr. in tech.  They weigh each class 4 cr.  The capstone is selected by a lottery.  I'm sure the classes are substantial.  Their second structures course addresses all the materials.  I like the traditional split of steel and concrete.  They seem to handle history/theory well, and ideally, theory would be separately identifiable.  They have 6 studios.  Many semester schools do.  I prefer 7, since the first one is such an adjustment for non-arch folks.

I put this up before when people were asking for suggestions.  I think this one is currently the best program for the 3 year crowd, and they manage to be top notch and still roll up their sleeves in practical stuff.  Note the "selectives" in each area (from the right), and that first summer's extra course is most likely a theory course.

Jul 1, 13 11:51 am

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