Architecture Major

Program Director: Brian Kelly, AIA

The undergraduate program in architecture develops critical thinkers, problem solvers and skilled professionals ready to take on the challenges of sustainable design. Our prime location between Washington, D.C., and Baltimore offers many advantages: a faculty of highly respected scholars and practitioners; alumni connections and careers at countless architectural firms; and rich architectural diversity. Begin your journey to a more sustainable and environmentally balanced world right here.

The first two years of the curriculum focus on developing a broad-based and well-rounded liberal education, complemented by courses that introduce you to architecture. You will be exposed to the many resources and opportunities of the university while refining your academic and career interests. We offer you two degree options that are tailored to fit your particular academic and career interests. The Bachelor of Science curriculum is centered on design studios, with complementary coursework in architectural history, theory, technology and visual media. The studio courses offer unique experiences where you will not only have the opportunity to show your design skills but also work with communities to help solve real-world problems.

One unique feature of the Bachelor of Arts program is your ability to pursue an academic path that reflect your passions and interests. It is not uncommon for students to discover that their interest in architecture reveals other career aspirations. Earning a bachelor of arts in architecture allows you to build a foundation in architecture while preparing for careers in business, urban planning, real estate development or historic preservation, just to name a few.

Students receive rigorous and comprehensive instruction from a faculty whose members are active in professional practice and research. Their individual areas of expertise include architectural design and theory, history, architectural archaeology, technology, urban design and planning, and historic preservation.

Admission to the Major

Freshman applicants:

admissions.umd.edu/apply/requirements/freshman

Transfer applicants:

admissions.umd.edu/apply/admission-requirements/transfer-applicant-requirements

Program Objectives

The School's mission is to educate Architects, Planners, Preservationists, Developers and the many allied stakeholders whose work and scholarship focuses on the quality of the built environment and promotes social justice, cultural value, resource conservation and economic opportunity.

We take advantage of our unique location—in a region that features the nation's capital and the post-industrial City of Baltimore, and links the Appalachian Mountains to the Atlantic Ocean while surrounding the Chesapeake Bay. Maryland's opportunities and challenges are found in its diverse communities, explosive growth and extensive historic resources.

Our faculty, students and alumni collaboratively advance their vision and commitment through research, teaching, colloquia, writing, creative design, planning, policy formation and professional work. Our mission is historically rooted in our land grant mandate and enhanced by our regional and international activities.

Program Learning Outcomes

  1. Students should be able to demonstrate the ability to think critically about the role of context in design.
  2. Students should be able to demonstrate an ability to communicate design intentions, visually and verbally.
  3. Students should be able to demonstrate an ability to demonstrate knowledge from the technology course sequence into the design process.
  4. Students should demonstrate the ability to design projects that provide healthful environments while conserving resources for future generations.
  5. Students should demonstrate an understanding of the ethical issues underpinning the formation of professional judgement in architectural design and practice.

All students must complete the following courses:

Course Title Credits
MATH120Elementary Calculus I3
or MATH140 Calculus I
PHYS121Fundamentals of Physics I4
ARCH171Design Thinking and Making in Architecture3
ARCH225History of World Architecture I3
ARCH200Design Media and Representation I3
ARCH226History of World Architecture II3
ARCH300Design Media and Representation II3
ARCH201Elements and Principles of Architecture1
ARCH462Methods & Materials of Building Construction3
ARCH400Architecture Design Studio I6
ARCH463Sustainable Systems in Architecture3
Total Credits35

For the Bachelor of Science degree option, students must complete three additional 6-credit design studios and accompanying technical/structures courses.

Course Title Credits
ARCH401Architecture Design Studio II6
ARCH402Architecture Design Studio III6
ARCH403Architecture Design Studio IV6
ARCH464Architectural Structures I3
ARCH465Architectural Structures II3
ARCH466Environmental Systems in Architecture3
ARCH474Integrated Education in Architecture NAAB/IDP1
ARCH4XX12
Total Credits40

For the Bachelor of Arts degree option, students must complete 36 additional credits in upper level Architecture electives and a minimum of 9 additional credits in directed electives inside or outside the major.

Course Title Credits
Select 36 additional credits in upper level Architecture electives36
Select 9 additional credits in directed electives inside or outside the major9
Total Credits45

Click here for roadmaps for four-year plans in the School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation.

Additional information on developing a four-year academic plan can be found on the following pages: