M.Arch Fall 2021 Application Status

  • Undergraduate Degree/ School/ Year graduated 
    • BSc. in Architectural Engineering/ International applicant/ 2012
  • Schools (applying for the post-professional program unless otherwise stated)
    • SCI_ARC
    • Cornell
    • GSD (MArch I) ((Second time applying))
    • AA
    • RICE
    • UCLA (MArch I)
    • UCL
    • YALE
    • Columbia (MArch I)
  • Results 
    • IN: SCI_ARC, Cornell $, AA
    • OUT: GSD 
    • Waitlist: RICE, UCLA

A question, has anyone ever gotten accepted into GSD after not making it previously?

Mar 19, 21 11:15 am  · 
1  · 

Hey there!
Congrats on the great results. Where do you think you’ll be heading? I’m off to sci-arc postgrad program

Mar 19, 21 11:31 am  · 

Well, I can’t decide yet, but I’m curious as what might have influenced your decision to go to SCI-ARC for the post-professional program as opposed to other schools...

Mar 19, 21 11:48 am  · 

They have the only program that I feel is perfect for me- regarding my interests, network and job opportunities

Mar 19, 21 1:42 pm  · 

regarding the job opportunities, what does that look like? and how would you say it compares to other post-professional degrees at other schools like the M.S. AAD for example?

Mar 21, 21 4:57 am  · 
1  · 

That would depend on what interests you. I’m looking to get into architecture for film, games, ar/vr, entrepreneurship and such. So for me The most interesting programs are at UCL, AA, IAAC, and SCI-Arc.

Regarding which location is most relevant for job opportunities: Barcelona is appealing to me because of the entrepreneurial spirit of the students in IAAC and of the city itself. London is a hub for digital production of film. Major companies are located there- framestore for instance. But of course LA is the major hub for this niche. Most London based production companies are based in LA as well. LA is a more concentrated pool of relevant networking opportunities. And it is no coincidence that the program that appeals to me most is located there (fiction and entertainment at sci-arc).

That being said, the differences are minor, at the end of the day I say go with your gut to the program you simply want the most. All your options are excellent.

Regarding Cornell- sorry, I don’t have any insights about this topic.

Mar 21, 21 12:41 pm  · 

Received an email notifying results for Columbia M.S. AAD just now.  Accepted!

Mar 22, 21 2:10 pm  · 
6  · 
  • Undergraduate Degree/ School/ Year graduated 

B.S. Arch / Washington University in St. Louis / 2020

- Malaysian applicant from Sarawak.

  • GPA - GRE  - TOEFL 

3.84/4.00 - Waived - Waived

  • Letter of recommendations

3 professors and 1 program chair

  • Schools

Applied for M.Arch I programs at:

GSD, MIT, Yale, GSAPP, UPenn

  • Results


Waitlist - MIT

IN - Yale with $


IN - UPenn with $

  • Tips


Complete your portfolio as early as you can. I did mine is the span of 3 months after graduating. I wholeheartedly recommend overhauling your portfolio if you haven't been updating it consistently. I completely rearranged/redesigned my portfolio to make it more cohesive. And of course have your professors/friends take a look and critique your portfolio.


Just write about what genuinely interests you. For the "Experience in the Built Environment" GSD essay, I wrote about a fire escape on the backside of a masonry and limestone gothic church behind my house. Seems like a trivial thing to notice but it is something that I genuinely find interesting which I found fun to write about. It also helps to have a clear vision of what you want to achieve during your time in graduate school and in your subsequent professional career.

Gather inspiration. I resort to books when I find myself stuck. Peter Zumthor's "Atmospheres" and "Thinking about Architecture," in my opinion, are great books to jog your mind before writing.

Have your professors and friends look at and comment on your essays. I had a friend in the GSD help me refine my statements which was a massive help.


I will probably go for GSD. I was too late to apply for any international financial aid and they're pretty adamant in not entertaining late applications. Yale was much nicer; they asked if I still wanted to apply for financial aid even though it was past the deadline. Good thing I received a scholarship form my county's state government.

Mar 25, 21 3:54 am  · 
1  · 

Hello! Has anyone accepted their offer for the AADRL program this year?! 

Mar 26, 21 2:25 pm  · 

Still trying to figure out the financial aspect of things

Mar 26, 21 2:35 pm  · 

Is there anyone who has not heard back from Columbia? I know people who have heard back already and I haven't and its freaking me out a little now.

Mar 26, 21 3:15 pm  · 
2  · 

Same boat

Mar 26, 21 3:32 pm  · 
2  · 

Same here

Mar 27, 21 4:51 pm  · 
1  · 

Waitlisted at GSAPP today. I wonder what my chances of getting accepted off the list are 

Mar 26, 21 3:51 pm  · 
1  · 

Congrats to everyone with the great offers! I was accepted by AA and UPenn's MArch program, and I can't decide which one. Any advice / experience at these schools would be really helpful thank you! 

Mar 27, 21 4:50 pm  · 

any update from GSAPP. Not heard anything yet. 

Mar 27, 21 7:14 pm  · 
1  · 

Same here!

Mar 27, 21 8:21 pm  · 
1  · 

Same here! I just sent them an email. Apparently the admitted students day is happening tomorrow but they still haven't said anything to me. Maybe they only have rejections left to send and they don't really care about how we feel....

Mar 28, 21 2:02 pm  · 
  • Undergraduate Degree/ School/ Year graduated 

Art History & Studio Art, Class of 2021

  • GPA - GRE  - TOEFL 

GPA 3.83; Major GPA: 3.93, 4.0, TOEFL: 111

  • Letter of recommendations 

1 from art history professor, 1 from studio art professor, 1 from summer architecture studio instructor

  • Personal Essay/Statement 

Combining my background in art history & studio art; material investigation..

  • Portfolio

Mostly sculptural work from small to large scale. Also put in projects from my summer immersive architecture studio. 

  • Schools 

WUSTL- In with $$$

RISD- In with $$

UPenn- In without funding 

UVA - In with $

UofM Taubman - In without funding

GSD- Out

Princeton - Out

Yale - Out

GSAPP- Waiting 

  • Open house impressions 

- Michigan-- Too big of a program and not focused 

- UPenn-- Tech heavy, cutting-edge fabrication lab

-RISD-- Theoretical and Conceptual. Lots of freedom to do whatever you want to do but not super structured. Correct me if i'm wrong. 

- UVA -- Great theory and history courses, amazing faculty and alum connections. C-ville might not be the best location out of all schools though. 

-Princeton-- very scholarly. Small program which i like, didn't think i would get in anyway but I heard that everyone who gets in gets >80% funding so i applied anyways. 

  • Tips

Not much to say as a non-arch background. I just explored my interests and tried to do the most I could to learn about architecture in a liberal arts college that doesn't provide any architecture curriculum. I interned at the campus architect's office for 4 years, studied abroad to learn architecture history, and attended a summer architecture studio program to learn design. 

Starting portfolio early is the key for sure, as many people said. I started a draft the summer before i applied. But procrastinated with the rest of the portfolio till November after i'm done with my finals at school. Worked day and night 12 hours for 1.5 months straight and finally got to a pretty good point. Still, I think i could've gotten better results if I had spent more time on my portfolio and passed it through more people before i submitted it. 

Mar 28, 21 2:16 pm  · 

Any insights on UPenn vs. RISD? I'm mostly between the two now. I got a little less than half funding from RISD, but if UPenn is worth it i'd be willing to pay more. After calculation attending RISD wouldn't be much cheaper than UPenn anyways even with funding. 

Mar 28, 21 2:17 pm  · 

Or should I drop all the admissions and wait to apply next round instead? Since I'm still in school i feel like i didn't have ample time to think through my applications. With my stats/background, will I be likely to get into better schools (though I'm really thankful for all the great programs I already got into this year) next year given that i will have more time after i graduate from college?

Mar 28, 21 2:27 pm  · 
1  ·  1

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