M.Arch Acceptance?


I am in the process of applying to grad schools for a Fall 2020 start date. Currently, I am completing my final year at University of Maryland, College Park with a B.S. in Architecture. I am interested in the programs at University of Virginia, Tulane, Rice, Pratt, UC Denver, Oregon and University of Maryland. 

Does anyone have any clarity on the acceptance rates for these schools?

Any comments about studio culture are much appreciated as well!

Nov 6, 19 10:30 pm

why such middling programs? low gpa?

Nov 7, 19 1:12 pm

Why such condescension? Low self-esteem?


so cute


I am interested in programs with more of a realistic approach to the field, if you have any insight about the theoretical vs. realistic programs that would be helpful!

I have a 3.7 GPA and I am hoping that will be suitable to these programs.

Nov 7, 19 2:01 pm

My experience might be outdated since I last paid attention to the programs around 2010-2013. I visited Maryland & Oregon (of the schools on your list) and know some Pratt undergrad alums.

Personally, I found U of M to be a little *too* grounded. Their main aim seemed to be to funnel graduates into a comfortable but dull job at a corporate DC office. I sat in on an urban design studio that was way too interested in parking minimums for this decade, and I felt a lot of pushback from faculty when I tried pushing them on issues of sustainability & resiliency, or in more theoretical directions. Just my experience, though. YMMV.

Oregon (I received my MArch from the Portland program), on the other hand, talks a bigger game. They don't always live up to it, again in my personal experience. I think U of O led the game in sustainability 25 years ago when no one else was really focused on it, but I sense they got complacent with this and did nothing while the rest of the world caught up to (& in some cases surpassed) them. My biggest frustration was what I thought was an overemphasis on program & function and lack of focus on actual design. More than one final presentation devolved into a back and forth about fire stairs. More than one final presentation featured what was essentially a bubble diagram for social good more than Architecture.

I haven't kept up with U of O happenings in the past 5 years but I've heard word around town that they've done a lot of re-vamping. I'd highly encourage a visit. If nothing else it's a way into the Portland design world, which is - in my opinion - one of the best small city design communities in the US.

Pratt is an art school. The Pratt undergrads I've encountered in other grad programs were excellent artists. If I remember correctly they've only had a M.Arch program for a few years. Unless they've drastically changed focus, Pratt is not at all like the others on your list. I wouldn't say they have "a realistic approach to the field."

As for acceptance, if you're halfway competent you shouldn't have a problem with Oregon or Maryland. They have pretty high admit rates.

Nov 7, 19 2:14 pm

Thank you tduds so much for that feedback!! It was very helpful to gain the Oregon perspective!

 I definitely agree with you about Maryland, we are a school that is focused on reality: ie. construction details and fire stairs... I think some of that is useful to a future in the field, however I would prefer a healthy mix of theory and code specs (and definitely a large emphasis on sustainability). If there are any schools that come to mind please list them!

Nov 7, 19 2:28 pm

I'm unfamiliar with most of the schools mentioned but I must agree with tduds assessment of Pratt. Some undergrads are talented but the graduate program is a train wreck and about as far away from reality as you can get and still be "accredited."

Unless you are dead set on working in NYC and need some "in"s, I'd highly recommend striking Pratt off your list.

Nov 7, 19 4:17 pm

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