SCI-arc or Syracuse B.Arch



I am currently debating between Sci-arc and syracuse for a B.Arch undergrad degree

I like Sci-arc's style and the computing side of architecture,

however I can take more electives at Syracuse. As a more 'foundamental' course in style, it will build a solid grounding which I can then go on to do the 'sci-arc stuff' in grad school.

and they also have really good leavers destinations to Ivy league schools.

(i hope my wording hasn't offended anyone

Apr 7, 21 3:22 am

My advice is to go for a more foundational/traditional undergraduate education. You will need time to develop your own design preferences, skills and styles. And you might find yourself changing your desired architectural style during your entire B.Arch education.

With that said, Sci-Arc and a very distinct and niche pedagogy. And if you're absolutely sure that's what you want out of your undergrad, then go for it. 

Choosing Sci-Arc for a graduate degree is also a good idea.

Hope this helps and congrats on getting into Sci-Arc and Syracuse!

Apr 7, 21 4:59 am  · 

I believe both Syracuse and Sci-Arc have B.Arch programs which means you won't have to get a masters in order to be on the path to licensure (if that's your goal). I graduated from SU in 2018, and got licensed the end of last year.

Syracuse has a very heavy focus on theory and design, which I think is critical in your architectural education. You'll have the opportunity (if you take it) to get deep into architectural history and theory while doing 12 hours of studio courses every week. The B.Arch thesis lasts the entire 5th year, during which you'll be expected to create and defend an argument about architecture, which for most people, culminates in a design project.

Furthermore, Syracuse's professional courses are top quality. When I was there, the Pro-Prac course was taught by Kirk Narburgh (who was the AIA NY president at the time), and was extremely helpful for three of the ARE 5.0 exams. Many of the "professional electives" were very helpful towards development of your practice interests later (I took a couple of courses that were specifically on historic preservation). The structures and systems courses (which were required for the first 3-4 years) were taught by professionals who had high esteem in their fields and were excellent at teaching and practice.

Finally the study-abroad options, while limited for arch. students (choose between Florence, London, or NYC for up to 2 semesters), were deliberate and fruitful. I studied in Italy for a semester, and the head at the time was Richard Rosa, who is still one of the most thoughtful designers that I've come into contact with today.

The downsides for SU are mainly the money (which Sci-Arc shares as well, so YMMV), and that there is very little hand-holding. You learn from Year 1 how to manage your own time to get the very heavy course loads done, or you struggle a lot the entire way through. So be prepared for that.

Sci-Arc is also really neat, but I'm not knowledgeable enough to speak too much about their program or curriculum.

Apr 7, 21 9:18 am  · 

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