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2011 M.Arch applicants, commiserate here!

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cmarshalle

@aag2022

Your port looks really good and has a nice individual and unique feel to it. What is your background?

Dec 1, 10 12:54 pm  · 
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mitboi

@aag2022... how are u condensing ur portfolio to 12 pages for berkeley?

i read somewhere that 12 pages = 12 sheets.. so u get 24 pages to work on..... i hope that's the case for sure!

Dec 1, 10 1:28 pm  · 
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aag2022

@cmarshalle - thanks, i have a liberal arts degree in architecture from columbia in 2006 and I've been working as a sustainable building analyst, among other things, since then.

@mitboi - i have no idea. I'm struggling with that right now. I'll probably get rid of the photog section, and maybe just pick my top two projects...have to think about it.

Has anyone tried asking the department directly?

Dec 1, 10 7:56 pm  · 
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LHaak

26/f BA from Pratt in Brookly, NY
3.8 GPA
GRE V 550 Q 760 AW 4.5

Applying to:
GSD - MArchII
MIT - SMarchS

Dec 2, 10 9:58 am  · 
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Laurem

LHaak... we have alarmingly similar stats. Except I live in Brooklyn and didn't go to school there. Exact same GRE,GPA, almost same age. Creepy. Apply to GSD as well.

Dec 2, 10 10:04 am  · 
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NYer

Could i get the forum's opinion on using reference photography from online sources in a portfolio. I would like to use images of the makeshift encampments in Haiti to highlight possibilities for change in a project for emergency relief housing.

Dec 2, 10 12:19 pm  · 
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howdyhass

is anyone freaking out? i'm still not done with my port, and essays,,

Dec 4, 10 11:20 am  · 
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aag2022

neither am I. hang in there, its almost over!

Dec 4, 10 2:22 pm  · 
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jetvancake

not done at all... its all good. there's 10 days till deadline time starts.


O SHIT!

Dec 4, 10 2:48 pm  · 
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jll3

Just finished up submitting all my applications, but then went to pick up the portfolios from my local print shop and the binding sucks, so now I have to get that fixed... but glad that everything else is done.

Dec 4, 10 2:58 pm  · 
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cmarshalle

I am counting down the days until everything is finished and submitted. I work nearly full-time and I am also taking 17 credits this semester, so I am battling finals, projects and apps at the same time. This is not fun at all, but I am leaving for a 10 day vacation as soon as everything is finished!!

Good luck everyone!

Dec 4, 10 3:04 pm  · 
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sandstorm

22/m/b. of environmental design from Texas A&M.
I applied to A&M's grad school last year, got accepted but decided to defer for a year.
(I had also applied to Rice that same year but got rejected)
This year I am only applying at U.T. Austin's M. Arch First Professional.

If my memory serves me right, the 'accepted/number applied' for 2010:
A&M: 35 / ~250 Accepted
Rice: 12 / 287 Rejected
U.T.: 55 / ~500 Did not apply

GRE = V: 530; M: 750; W: 3.0
GPA = 3.3

Currently working on portfolio, essay, and one LOR needed.

If you would like to see my unfinished portfolio please refer to this link:

http://issuu.com/louisedwards/docs/portfolio

Criticism is welcome!

Dec 5, 10 2:14 am  · 
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ARCHERY

Hi everyone,

I'm thinking of applying to MArch I programs this year.

But I'm concerned because I don't have an architecture background so I think my chances of acceptance are low.

To all of those who are applying to MArch I as NON-ARCH people - meaning, no formal architecture academic/work experience - what are you putting in your portfolio?

And please keep the portfolios coming! It's really helpful.

Kind regards,
Sarah

Dec 5, 10 8:51 am  · 
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cmarshalle

@ARCHERY

I am coming to arch as a business major with a minor in music. Have you decided which schools you are interested in? I probably spent the most time researching schools honestly. It might sound surprising, but schools have the three year programs for people like us. They want a good mix of people from a wide range of backgrounds, so don't be discouraged. Visit and talk to as many schools as you can, and try to get a feel for what they are seeking.

As for the port, I returned to school this semester to take a 3D fine arts studio and an intro interior design course. I am mostly including work I have done in those courses, so sculpture work, a few digital compositions and some abstract models from the ID course. I am also including a short section with photography and including lots of process sketches for each project.

Good Luck!

Dec 5, 10 12:32 pm  · 
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jll3

I'm also coming from a non arch background, BS in business... one of the common things in my application is diversity, I mention my diverse background and interests in my statement and my portfolio reflects this as well as I have a broad range of art work in different media. I have stuff from graphic design classes, photography, and have been taking an advanced drawing class this semester which has given me some good stuff to include.

As far as my information goes

23/m/bs in business

3.6 gpa / V:530 Q:740 A:5.0

Just fixed the binding of my portfolios and they're ready to be mailed out on Monday, all done after that, thank god. applying to:

University of Texas, Washington, Oregon, Michigan, Cincinnati, WUSTL, and VT.

Dec 5, 10 12:53 pm  · 
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therebyfar

Hi Archery, do you mean you're thinking about applying this year as in 2011 or next year 2012, just because applications are due in a few weeks and it seems a little late to be asking questions about portfolios, unless you've already put yours together and are just interested in what others have done. Anyway, my background isn't in architecture and my portfolio was almost entirely independent projects in a variety of media. Of course, I have no idea how successful it'll be. Schools usually aim for diversity within their admitted class, so coming in without an arch background isn't detrimental just as along as you've got clear reasons for wanting to study architecture and show aptitude via portfolio. Do you at least a background in studio art? That might help in preparing your projects.

Dec 5, 10 1:05 pm  · 
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howdyhass

hi guys,
just wanted to share my portfolio, any comments welcomed.

http://issuu.com/howdyhassss1/docs/portfolio_final

Dec 5, 10 6:25 pm  · 
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jetvancake

howdy, your last project looks awesome.

Dec 5, 10 6:38 pm  · 
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ARCHERY

I don't really have any 3D stuff to put in my portfolio, and I heard that only having 2D medium such as drawings and paintings doesn't really cut it. Guess I should wait another year and maybe take an interior design course or something?

Dec 6, 10 12:27 am  · 
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qdpv

archery,
it's possible getting into a program with only drawings and paintings, it just depends on the subject matter of your work. there is a nice portfolio from last year's thread by 01nichols that consists of just drawings, the thing is they're all spatial in nature. looks like he got into mit and gsapp too, so there is hope.

Dec 6, 10 12:48 am  · 
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Pythagoras

@ Archery - yes, you should spend a year to beef up your port substantially by taking some courses. Unless you are able to show some 3D thinking in your drawings and paintings to impress the Adcomm right away, your chances of getting admitted will be slim. The truth hurts, but I am just being honest with you cus I don't want you to go through what I did last year when I applied w/o a backgrd in Arch. My port consisted of only drawings, paintings in various medium. It was not what the Ad comm wanted to see. They want to know how you think, and it's hard for that to come through in drawings, paintings. Of course, I may be wrong but I am just sharing my experience here. Look at those port that have garnered good feedback from other archinecters, and you'll have a good sense of what 'should' be in a kickass port. Also, check out cmarshelle's comments - cmarshelle is definitely spot on by taking a 3D drawing class, and including thought process sketches.

I applied to ivies last year despite advice from many others that my port was not of the standard that the Adcomm wants. I accepted the truth that I wouldnt be able to get into any arch program way before the results were out in March / April. I wish I were less 'stubborn' then.

However, if you are applying to the lesser known programs, you may still stand a chance? Perhaps other archinecters can help.

Dec 6, 10 1:01 am  · 
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Pythagoras

@ Archery - phivphan has just posted a link to a fellow archinecter's portfolio who was admitted to some really good schs. He has extensive experience working with architects, and a backgrd that is arch-related too. So I am not sure if you'll consider him as one w a pure non-arch background. It could well be a conscious decision to make his work stand out from the rest of applicants.

Dec 6, 10 1:07 am  · 
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howdyhass

@phythagoras, where did you apply to? are you applying this year?

Dec 6, 10 2:14 am  · 
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Pythagoras

@howdyhass - yale, berkeley, upenn...solid programs.
I am likely to apply this year. Still undecided.

Dec 6, 10 3:15 am  · 
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mitboi

01nichols' portfolio isnt exactly non-arch since he did nyc/paris at columbia so there is a lot of arch stuff in there..

as pythagoras indicated, i can see how drawings/paintings alone are a bit weak to demonstrate your thinking abilities. i was in the same boat as pythagoras last year.

Dec 6, 10 9:35 am  · 
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howdyhass

@ Pytagoras: The apps are due pretty soon! haha. Do you have a port to share?

@mitboi: Are you applying again this year?

Dec 6, 10 1:06 pm  · 
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mitboi

@howdyhass, yep, applying this year as well.

Dec 6, 10 1:14 pm  · 
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AmeliaP

@sandstorm

i think you need more projects. the ones presented are good and the hand drawings look nice.

the shoe project seems weak. i would elaborate on it's relevance to architecture or remove it.

Dec 6, 10 4:41 pm  · 
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ramus

Applying to GSD, UCLA, UC Berk.

Bombed the gre like 1k-ish.
I'm trying to find out if I need to retake it again, which would be received after deadline. How would that work anyway?
Besides feeling like a legit dum bass,
I'm counting on my strong portfolio/letters & gpa(3.3)/background(english as 3rd lang) to an extent to make up for gre...
I know those are the important things-

but I need to hear it again....

SOMEONE TELL ME GRE DOESN'T MATTEERRRRR!! :L

Dec 6, 10 8:21 pm  · 
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ramus

Applying to GSD, UCLA, UC Berk.

Bombed the gre like 1k-ish.
I'm trying to find out if I need to retake it again, which would be received after deadline. How would that work anyway?
Besides feeling like a legit dum bass,
I'm counting on my strong portfolio/letters & gpa(3.3)/background(english as 3rd lang) to an extent to make up for gre...
I know those are the important things-

but I need to hear it again....

SOMEONE TELL ME GRE DOESN'T MATTEERRRRR!! :L

Dec 6, 10 8:21 pm  · 
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howdyhass

@ramalam, haha. I dont know, but I think GRE matters the least,,,You could take the gre's again, even after deadline, and email/call them about ur gre, if you are so worried. Lets see that strong portfolio! :)

Dec 6, 10 8:55 pm  · 
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ukchomper

I called Penn for instance about resending in GRE's they said it would be ok to do and that if they can they will consider the scores when looking at everything even after the deadline... i will be retaking them dec. 28th (the lady also said they are giving people applying to penn a 2 week grace period to submit all things supplemental and application)

Dec 6, 10 11:12 pm  · 
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iamjena

Hey, how are you guys binding your portfolios?

I am really not satisfied with the comb-tooth / plastic spiral options at the local print shops.. and hard-binding takes too long. So I am binding it myself with a silver wire-o binding and using black mat board for the cover. Only one school specifically says they want your info on the cover, so I'm having it printed on the cover for that one..

just curious what everyone else is doing.


@hagaandaz,
I would also like to know! I went to UCB for undergrad, and feel like I got a similar education as the grad students by choosing studios and honors studios taught by graduate professors. I'm applying to a lot of schools that differ from UCB's ideology..

Dec 6, 10 11:17 pm  · 
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aag2022

can you articulate what the UCB ideology is? I'm trying to finalize 1 of 12 essays ;)

I'm just doing the spiral bind. most important facet of binding is function and several schools ask that it be able to stay open by itself, laid flat on a desk. I think spiral is the best option.

Dec 6, 10 11:21 pm  · 
 · 
^^

@ramalama

Some schools do not have a "minimum score" for the GRE's so I guess they are the last thing they look at on your applications. That seems to be the general consensus from most of the forum posts I've read. I am not sure how much weight the scores have on making admissions decisions. Probably they use them to make decisions for students with low GPAs or deciding who's going to be the last student to get in.... etc...

From what I know this the order of importance of your application components

Portfolio
Statement of Purpose
Recommendations
GPA
GRE

Dec 6, 10 11:42 pm  · 
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howdyhass

@iamjena: congrats on doing it DIY. Most schools I looked at required a cover, but I guess some do not.

@aag2022: Some schools specifically ask not to use spiral bind. Parsons for example. Before setting into the spiral you might want to check. Also, if you do spiral it would ruin many of your artwork in your portfolio as I see most of ur images overlapping both spreads, just something to think about.

Dec 7, 10 2:45 am  · 
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ljkfux

@phivphan actually 01nichols' ptf has some 3d stuff, check near the end. i thought the guy's drawing technique was good, but the projects overall seemed like a lot of nonsense thought up in a drunken haze. the shirt thing and random sound wave drawings just seemed completely pointless and silly to me to be honest!

Dec 7, 10 3:54 am  · 
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ljkfux

and all of the buildings he drew were just blocks upon blocks, nothing very imaginative there. i'm surprised mit and gsapp are happy with this, but who know what the hell these crazy art-fart adcomms are looking for!

Dec 7, 10 3:56 am  · 
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ramus

thanks for replies- esp ^^
def going to hit the portfolio with extra sexyness- will upload to issu once it's stable.
and i'm hella solid on 1-4, but i'm going to retake it and resend it... after Dday prob though- just to ease my mind. don't know if it will be tooooo laaaate!!!
;d

Dec 7, 10 3:58 am  · 
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aag2022

@howdyhass - from the parsons websitie:

Portfolio: This must be in bound-book form and no larger than 9" x 12" (A4). It may include drawings and photographs of projects and samples of other artwork. Mail your portfolio accompanied by a Materials Cover Sheet, which is also available in the Supplemental Forms section of the online application. Do not include slides or digital media, and do not use excessive packaging.

are you referring to their specification of "bound-book" form? is that a specific binding preference or a generic specification for some kind of formal binding system? I assumed the latter.

your comment about fucking up my spreads is definitely true though... I'm experimenting with a saddle stitch right now...

Dec 7, 10 8:04 am  · 
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howdyhass

yeah, i may have misunderstood parsons' specification, oops

Dec 7, 10 12:19 pm  · 
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cc11

I am an engineering student who is applying for master of architecture programs in 2013. I was looking at the Harvard and Cornell admission requirements, and it seems that only those in the sciences and arts are eligible. Anyone know why this is the case?

Is applied sciences a subset of science by any chance?? If not, do I still stand a chance at getting in?

Thanks for your expertise!

Dec 10, 10 9:28 pm  · 
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arketkt

I submitted GSAPP app on time and everything is completed, including LOR. They received my portfolio and GRE scores but it still says "application incomplete", anyone else have this issue?

Dec 16, 10 3:59 am  · 
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ext architect

@Arketkt - I inquired about same issue. Apparently it takes 3 days for the stuff to be updated on your online application.

Dec 16, 10 4:33 am  · 
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AlldayAP

Hi Everyone,

I am hoping you can all help me get started... I am really interested in getting started in applying to architecture school, however I have absolutely NO idea where to begin. I have always been really interested in Architecture school but I am really intimidated by the portfolio because I was a Biology major undergrad and I have absolutely no artistic background. I am signing up for a few art classes to get started and I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions regarding:

1: Other ways to get a good portfolio put together for someone with no art background

2: Other classes that might be useful to take that will look good for my app to architecture schools

3: How bad is a 2.9 GPA from a Major University (Boston University) when applying to architecture school. I am worried about this killing my chances at getting into any decent school.

4: What kind of GRE scores do they look for?

5: Lastly, any suggestions on schools that an applicant like myself should be looking at would be wonderful. I am totally clueless but I would love a place to start.

Thanks a lot for any suggestions!!

Dec 16, 10 10:46 am  · 
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deletedusername

23/m/B.S. Architecture from the University of Texas at Arlington

GPA:
3.14 cumulative
3.65 major

GRE:
Verbal: 530, 70th percentile
Quantitative: 740, 80th percentile
Analytical: 4.5, 67th percentile

Applied to so far:
UCLA
Columbia
Harvard

Still to apply to:
The Bartlett School of Architecture at University College London
Princeton
and/or
Yale

Portfolio:
http://issuu.com/arquiteuthis/docs/alexdahm-work

There are a few tiny misspellings in the document which I have fixed since sending it away to UCLA and Columbia, and before I send away round two of applications I am most likely going to add another project or two plus a 3D Model for "The Strand" project because it isn't all that great in its current state. Any feedback is appreciated, though, even though I consider this to be representative of a final product in most cases.

I am relatively confident as in the past few years, text, three of my classmates are at Harvard, one at Columbia, and one at UCLA, as well as others in places like The Bartlett, ASU, Oregon, RISD, Parsons, and a friend teaching at Caly Poly Pomona, and they gave their approval of my work. Ramalama is one of my buddies and he is applying similar places with an equivalent quality of work; we have worked together on several projects, too. Still, I don't necessarily I will have a luxury of choosing from schools, but I am excited/nervous/anxious to see what happens!

Dec 16, 10 8:53 pm  · 
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deletedusername

That last post had some errors... wah waaaaaah.

In the last paragraph, "text" is a typo, and the last sentence should read, "Still, I don't necessarily THINK I will have a luxury of choosing from schools, but I am excited/nervous/anxious to see what happens!"

:P

Dec 16, 10 8:56 pm  · 
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paudely

Anyone else having problems with recommenders getting their LOC in on time?

I have a professor who has been great at staying in contact with me over the past couple of years, and assured me he would write a letter for me back in October. I've sent him all of the information, and sent a reminder email last week about the dec 15 deadline.

Well, still no submittal. I called the admission offices of gsapp and gsd to ask what to do, and they both said they give a little extra time for LOC's..

I am just a TAD bit freaking out at the moment/the past 2 days.

anyone else have flaky recommenders..?

and do you think their tardiness/not being able to submit at all reflects poorly on me?

Dec 16, 10 11:44 pm  · 
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mitboi

^ don't worry too much about LOC's being on time or not.. its nice to have them submitted prior to the deadlines, but schools tend to give you a week or two to get everything in. :)

Dec 16, 10 11:50 pm  · 
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cat in the bag

Binding: I used a chicago screw bind last year, which essentially is a hard cover with screws driven down through the spine. Printing full bleed pages for the screw bind + getting the printer to score the folding lines down the spreads meant that, essentially, a lie-flat perfect binding was created on the inside. Sharper, even. The saddle stitch is beautiful and creates the same effect, but is more time-consuming. I ordered the covers from the bindery ahead of time and screwed in the printed pages myself in 10 minutes, which gave me a same-day turnaround rate for pf printing + assembly -- actually put the books together in line while waiting at FedEx. Last minute I know, but the extra time did make a difference... And they looked way better than any Kinko's spiral bind!

Dec 17, 10 1:57 am  · 
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