Graduate Program in Architecture (M.Arch)

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Degrees

Professional Master's Degree

The Master of Architecture degree (M.Arch.), accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB), is intended for students who plan to practice architecture professionally. It qualifies them to take the state professional licensing examination after completing the required internship. 

Post-Professional Master’s Degree

A post-professional M.Arch. degree is available to those who hold the degree of Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch.) or its equivalent from an international institution. These are students who have successfully completed a professional program in architecture and have fulfilled the educational requirements for professional licensing in the state or country in which the degree was granted. Students typically complete this program in two years. This degree is not accredited by the NAAB.

Programs of Study

The master's degree program is structured around a rigorous sequence of design studios. Studio work is complemented by courses in technology, history, theory, and analysis and representation. Each student constructs an individual program of study to meet course and distribution requirements. Students are also eligible to take elective courses in the School and in other departments of the University.

PROFESSIONAL PROGRAM
Students in the Professional Program must take a minimum of 25 courses, typically four per term, including one design studio each term and the independent design thesis in the final term. The studio sequence, required technology and professional practice courses, and courses in history/theory and urbanism constitute a core that represents the foundational knowledge of the discipline. In addition to these required courses, each student must complete distribution requirements within the areas of history/theory and building technology. In order to encourage the development of an individual program of study, each student may select up to three elective courses that can be taken throughout the University with the approval of the Director of Graduate Studies.

PREREQUISITES (not required for admission but should be completed before matriculation)
One year of colege level math
One year of college level physics
One year of architecture and art history course work

PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS
Design Studios and Seminars
ARC 501: Architecture Design Studio, fall
ARC 502: Architecture Design Studio, spring
ARC 503 or 504: Integrated Building Studio, fall or spring
Two (2) vertical studios (ARC 505A-C and/or ARC 506A-C)
ARC 508: M.Arch Thesis Studio, spring
ARC 547: Introduction to Formal Analysis
One (1) design seminar elective

History and Theory
One (1) course with a focus in 18th/19th century architectural history
One (1) course with a focus in 20th century architectural history
One (1) course with a focus in urbanism and landscape architecture
Three (3) additional history and theory courses (any level)

Building Technology
ARC 509: Integrated Building Systems
ARC 510: Structural Analysis for Architecture
ARC 511: Structural Design
ARC 514: Environmental Engineering of Buildings, Part I
ARC 515: Environmental Engineering of Buildings, Part II
One (1) additional Building Technology course (any level)

Legal and Business
ARC 562: The Professional Practice of Architecture

Thesis Prep
ARC 530

Electives
Three (3) courses (any department)

ADVANCED STANDING IN THE PROFESSIONAL PROGRAM (granted at the discretion of the admissions committee)
Design Studios and Seminars
ARC 503 or 504: Integrated Building Studio, fall or spring
Two vertical studios (ARC 505A-C and/or ARC 506A-C)
ARC 508: M.Arch Thesis Studio

History and Theory
One course with a focus in 18th/19th century architectural history
One course with a focus in 20th century architectural history
One course with a focus in urbanism and landscape architecture
Two additional history and theory courses

Building Technology
ARC 511: Structural Design
ARC 515: Environmental Engineering of Buildings, Part II
One additional Building Technology course

Legal and Business
ARC 562: The Professional Practice of Architecture

Thesis Prep
ARC 530

Electives
Two courses

THE THESIS
During their thesis, students are challenged to make an architectural response to a general thematic question. The theme is explored in workshops, stated as a written proposition and elaborated as a design proposal during the students’ final
semester. Thesis topics are agreed upon by the faculty that serve as a hinge point between architecture and questions of politics, culture, technology or society. The thematic organization of the final semester’s independent design research creates a shared point of departure for students, faculty and visiting critics.

EXEMPTIONS
Depending on the student’s prior education or experience, exemption from certain courses may be obtained, on an individual basis, by application to the DGS. Such exemptions, when granted, are recorded in the student’s file. Exemptions from particular courses do not reduce the number of courses required in each of the designated areas of study but allow for more flexibility within the area of distribution.

POST-PROFESSIONAL PROGRAM
Students complete the Post-Professional Program in two years and take a minimum of 14 courses. This degree is not accredited by the NAAB.

PREREQUISITES (not required for admission but should be completed before matriculation)
One year of college level math
One year of college level physics
One year of architecture and art history course work

PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS
Design Studios and Seminars
Two studios (ARC 503, 504, 505A-C and/or 506A-C)
ARC 507, 508 (year-long thesis)

Proseminar
ARC 531

Thesis Prep
ARC 532

Electives 
Eight (8) courses

THE THESIS
The Post-Professional Program culminates in a thesis in which design itself is considered a form of research. In lieu of a studio presentation, students exhibit their work at a gallery in New York City during their final semester. Utilizing Princeton’s unique interdisciplinary potential as a research university, students are free to seek advisors from within and outside the faculty of architecture. This tradition draws on architecture’s history that has, since the Renaissance,  incorporated a vast spectrum of disciplines from the humanities, arts, and sciences.

EXEMPTIONS
Depending on the student’s prior education or experience, exemption from certain courses may be obtained, on an individual basis, by application to the DGS. Such exemptions, when granted, are recorded in the student’s file. Exemptions from particular courses do not reduce the number of courses required in each of the designated areas of study but allow for more flexibility within the area of distribution.