Affordable Architecture Degrees

Scroll down to see the most affordable architecture degrees in 2016, as well as info on the different types of architecture degrees and architecture program accreditation.

Find a school

Tell us what you're looking for and we'll get you started!

Advertisement This search widget accesses a list of schools that help sponsor this site by paying a small fee for student inquiries. They are all accredited not-for-profit institutions. Some may be included in our rankings but it is not related to their participation as an advertiser. In general, evaluating as many schools as possible will help you find the best fit.

Architects have some of the best jobs in the world. They design the buildings, landscapes, ships, and structures upon which we rely. They’re in the vanguard of movements such as sustainability and environmental design, and play an integral part in city planning and community living. Whether it’s a private skyscraper or a public square, the work of architects has the potential to change the world.

Sound good? Then the next step is practical advice. In our guide to affordable architecture schools, you’ll learn about your degree choices and why NAAB accreditation matters. We discuss the steps required for state licensure and NCARB certification, plus where you can go for help.

How to Become an Architect

What Degree Do I Need to Become a Registered & Licensed Architect?

If you’re intent on becoming a licensed architect, you have a variety of choices.

Professional Degree Paths

The most direct route to becoming an architect is to pursue a professional degree in architecture that has been accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). The curricula for these programs is usually heavily focused on practical coursework, theory, and architectural practice. There are 3 major types of professional architecture degrees:

  1. Bachelor of Architecture (BArch) degree
  2. Master of Architecture (MArch) degree
  3. Doctor of Architecture (DArch)

All of these options will prepare you for state licensure. However, BArch graduates who wish to teach at the university level may wish to add a master’s degree in education or a similar topic (i.e. not an MArch) in order to buff up their résumé.

Non-Professional Undergraduate Degree Paths

You don’t necessarily have to earn a BArch in Architecture if you wish to become a licensed architect. You also have the option to pursue a 4-year, non NAAB-accredited degree followed by an MArch, the professional degree needed for licensure. Your choices here include:

  • Pre-professional BS or BA in Architectural Studies
  • Bachelor’s degree in a related field (e.g. engineering, mathematics, design, etc.)

Both of these options will prepare you to apply for a 2-year or 3-year MArch program.

  • If you’re worried about time and money, a BS or BA in Architectural Studies will usually shorten the time needed to complete your master’s degree. You’ll often see the pre-professional degree + MArch option referred to as the “4+2 plan” (4 years of undergraduate; 2 years of graduate).
  • If you choose to pursue a bachelor’s degree in an area unrelated to architecture, the MArch may take 3 or 4 years to complete.

We talk more about other options (e.g. landscape architecture, marine architecture, etc.) in our section on bachelor’s degrees.

Types of Architecture Degrees

Associate’s Degree in Architecture

An associate degree’s in architecture is a 2-year program that is intended to help you earn credits for a bachelor’s degree or prepare you for entry-level careers in drafting and similar architectural fields. Associate’s degrees are widely available through community colleges, universities, and technical schools. A high school diploma or GED is required to apply.

It’s important to remember that you cannot become a licensed architect without a BArch or higher. If you’re hoping to transition to a BArch, make sure your associate degree credits will be transferable to the NAAB-accredited program of your choice.

Degree Options

  • Associate of Science (AS) in Architecture: Often includes the same science, technology, and engineering courses covered in the first years of a BS or BArch. A common choice for those interested in a bachelor’s degree.
  • Associate of Applied Science (AAS): Often includes a specialty such as architectural engineering technology, architectural engineering drafting, or a similar field. A common choice for those who wish to go straight into the workforce after graduation.

Typical Coursework

Many associate’s programs focus on the basics of architectural drafting and engineering. Courses often cover computer-aided design (CAD) systems, architectural drawing, building systems, construction, structural conceptions, and graphic techniques. Strong programs will incorporate a fair amount of hands-on experience in laboratories, architectural firms, and building sites. Look for schools that also teach you to execute estimates, approximate budgets, prepare agreements, and present projects to clients.

Career Options

Although you won’t be able to practice as an architect with an associate’s degree, you may be able to find entry-level work with architectural firms and companies that provide engineering services. These kinds of jobs can help you save for the next step in your education. Common titles include:

  • Architectural assistant
  • Municipal planner & estimator
  • Drafter
  • Specification writer

Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture

A bachelor’s degree in architecture is a 4-5 year program that is intended to prepare graduates to become architects. You will find them being offered by a variety of colleges, universities, and military academies. A high school diploma or a GED is typically required to apply.

As we noted in our section on degree choices, the BArch is the only professional undergraduate degree that will allow you to apply for state licensure as an architect. If you choose to pursue a non-professional bachelor’s degree, you will have to earn a Master of Architecture (MArch) in order to sit for the ARE exam and become a licensed architect.

Professional Bachelor of Architecture (BArch)

The BArch typically takes 5 years to complete and must include a minimum of 150 semester credit hours in academic coursework in professional studies and electives. Courses will often cover important areas such as architecture theory, project planning, computer-aided design (CAD) systems, urban design, construction methods, mechanical systems (e.g. electricity, plumbing, etc.), environmental design, project management, and architectural history.

You may be asked to prepare estimates, evaluate budgets, and present work to clients. In the final year, many universities ask students to work under the supervision of a licensed architect in a professional firm. This internship is a critical part of preparation for your professional life. Before you enroll in a BArch program, make sure it is accredited by the NAAB!

Non-Professional Bachelor Degrees

A non-professional bachelor degree can be a great way to explore the field of architecture without committing to the pressure of the BArch. Options for non-NAAB-accredited undergraduate degrees include:

  • Bachelor of Arts in Architecture (BA)
  • Bachelor of Science in Architecture (BS)
  • Bachelor of Fine Arts in Architecture (BFA Arch)
  • Bachelor of Environmental Design (BEnvd or BED)
  • Bachelor of Science in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering (BS NAME)
  • Bachelor of Landscape Architecture (BLA)

Talk to your academic advisor about your options. For example, if you are interested in becoming a marine architect, you may need a BS NAME, a mariner’s license, and on-the-job training to qualify for jobs. If you are interested in becoming a landscape architect, you may need a BLA or master’s, 1-4 years internship experience, and a state license for landscape architecture.

Career Options

A bachelor’s degree is a solid framework for architectural jobs, although many employers will also want to see proof of internships, on-the-job experience, and a commitment to further education. Choices include:

  • Licensed architect
  • Surveyor
  • Landscape architect
  • Interior architect
  • Marine architect
  • Architectural drafter
  • Regional planner
  • Building contractor

Master’s Degree in Architecture

A master’s degree in architecture is a 1-3.5 year graduate program that is intended to prepare students for architectural licensure or provide them with further study in an area of interest. These programs are offered by a wide range of universities. A bachelor’s degree in architecture or a related field (with knowledge of areas such as design theory, CAD systems, and construction technology) is usually required in order to apply.

As we discussed in our section on degree choices, you must have a BArch, MArch, or DArch in order to become a licensed architect. But since MArchs come in a variety of flavors, we’ve listed some of the most common options.

Master of Architecture (MArch) I: 3-3.5 years

The MArch I is targeted at students who have earned a bachelor’s degree in a field related to architecture, but who don’t have a massive amount of architectural knowledge or expertise. Because of this, most universities insist that students complete at least 3-3.5 years of concentrated master’s coursework before they are allowed to graduate. You may be expected to study areas such as physics, building science, architectural history and theory, city planning, environmental design, calculus, and structural engineering. A final project or thesis caps off your education.

Master of Architecture (MArch) II: 2 years

The MArch II is intended for students who have completed a professional, 5-year BArch (or its equivalent) and wish to expand their field of expertise or specialize in a certain area (e.g. sustainability). Because MArch II students are already qualified professionals, they often have a great deal of curriculum choice. For example, in their second year, they may choose to write a thesis, focus on teaching skills, or pursue a special project.

Master of Architecture (MArch): 4+2 plan (2 years)

Students with a pre-professional undergraduate degree in architectural studies (e.g. a BS or BA) may be interested in investigating a “4+2” plan. If you went to a highly regarded school and have strong undergraduate grades, there are universities that are willing to enroll you in a 2-year MArch program. Although this path takes one year longer than the BArch, it gives you the chance to explore more areas of architecture in your bachelor years and pick a master’s program & thesis topic that suits your exact area of interest.

Master of Architecture (MArch): Post-Professional Research Degree

This degree sometimes fall under the larger heading of the MArch I. Post-professional master’s degrees are typically aimed at architects who are interested in focusing on research and preparing for a Doctor of Philosophy in Architecture.

Doctoral Degree in Architecture

A doctorate in architecture is a 4-7 year graduate program intended for architects who wish to teach at the university level, pursue high-level research jobs, or improve their career opportunities. In most cases, you must have a master’s degree or the equivalent in order to apply.

PhD in Architecture

This is the traditional pathway for architects interested in research and academic careers. PhD students are expected to contribute an original piece of research to the field of architecture and complete a research project or dissertation.

Doctor of Architecture (DArch)

Like the BArch and the MArch, the Doctor of Architecture (DArch) is an NAAB-accredited professional program that allows architects to apply for state licensure. In your search for doctoral programs, you may find that DArch degrees tend to have a more practical/professional focus than research-oriented PhDs.

Certificate in Architecture

A certificate in architecture is a non-degree, academic program that takes approximately 6 months-1 year to complete. Architects may pursue certificates in order to fulfill continuing education credits, earn course credits for a degree, specialize in a field, start their own firm, and/or hone their skills. In the past few decades, online programs have become popular with working professionals.

Undergraduate Certificates in Architecture

Undergraduate certificates are intended to give students an introduction to the field or teach them essential skills.

Graduate Certificates in Architecture

Graduate certificates are aimed at working professionals who already hold a bachelor’s degree. Certificate topics can range from interior design, construction, and technology to professional leadership, project development, and enterprise architecture – the options are endless.

If you’re interested in earning a certificate in order to prepare for a MArch or master’s degree, make sure your certificate credits will be recognized by your favored graduate program.

Certificate vs. Certification

One thing to note – a certificate in architecture is different from professional certification. Certificates are academic qualifications; certifications are granted by the NCARB and other bodies as a recognition of your professional expertise.

Important Accreditations

Regional Accreditation

No matter which degree program you choose, we recommend you attend a regionally accredited college or university. Regional accreditation is a “seal of approval” granted to institutions by one of 6 regional accrediting bodies (e.g. Southern Association of Colleges and Schools).

You can learn more about the difference between national accreditation and regional accreditation in: Accreditation: Understanding the Difference Between Real Schools and Diploma Mills.

Benefits of Regional Accreditation

By attending a regionally accredited school, you will find it easier to:

  • Transfer credits (many regionally accredited schools don’t accept credits from nationally accredited institutions)
  • Qualify for scholarships, funding, student loan, and tuition reimbursement
  • Apply for respected graduate schools
  • Look good in the eyes of headhunters and recruiters

Remember that regional accreditation is given to the overall institution. To see if the architecture program is accredited for professional licensing, look for NAAB accreditation as well.

NAAB Accreditation

The National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB) is the sole agency that accredits U.S. professional degree programs in architecture. As such, it accredits BArch, MArch, and DArch programs. If you wish to become a licensed architect, you will find that most state registration boards will require you to earn a degree from an NAAB-accredited program. An NAAB-accredited degree will also look great on your résumé when you apply for architecture jobs. 

Find an NAAB-accredited professional program.

Licensure & Certification

State Licensure & Registration

Every state requires architects to obtain a professional license. In most cases, this means you will have to:

  1. Earn a professional degree (BArch, MArch or DArch) from an architecture program accredited by the NAAB
  2. Complete a paid internship supervised by licensed, registered architects (typically 3-5 years)
  3. Pass the NCARB’s Architect Registration Examination (ARE)
  4. Keep your skills and licensure up-to-date through continuing education (e.g. workshops, classes, conferences, monographs, etc.)

Exact licensure requirements vary from state to state, so please check with your state architectural registration board for precise details. For example, some states may allow candidates to substitute work experience for an accredited degree. This means a non-NAAB-accredited program could meet educational requirements. It’s always best to double-check.

You can also learn more about the process of becoming an architect on the website of the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB).

NCARB Certification

Once you have earned your state license, you may wish to earn a certification from the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB)Certification signals that you have met the highest professional standards in architecture, including the protection of the health, safety, and welfare of the public.

This is purely voluntary step – architects do not need to have NCARB certification in order to practice.  However, NCARB certification can help to speed the process of reciprocity. In other words, you may find it easier to offer your professional services to another state or jurisdiction after you’ve earned your initial license.

School Rankings

1

Farmingdale State College

Farmingdale State College offers a Bachelor of Science Degree in Architectural Engineering Technology. The college has agreements with local community colleges that allow students with an associate degree in construction, civil or architectural technology to transfer into the four-year program. To graduate, students must take 130 credit hours with an emphasis on applied technology in the building process. Students have the opportunity for an internship in the field to gain valuable work experience. Several scholarships are designated for students in the Architectural Engineering Technology program at Farmingdale State, including some just for freshmen. Farmingdale State's program is accredited by the Engineering Technology Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology.

CAG Score 97.2

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

8,394 Students

2

Texas A & M University-College Station

The College of Architecture at Texas A&M-College Station offers two tracks in the Bachelor of Environmental Design program, a pre-professional design study track or the research study track, which culminates in a written thesis. The design track prepares students to enter the school's Master of Architecture program, accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board. All undergraduates are required to take part in a semester away program, either studying abroad or completing an internship in the field. Graduate certificates allow students to further specialize in the field. Scholarships offered include the August A. Neuner Scholarship, Arthur W. Licht Memorial Scholarship, or a variety of scholarships offered by chapters of the American Institute of Architects (awards vary).

CAG Score 96.8

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

61,642 Students

3

University of Minnesota-Twin Cities

The University of Minnesota-Twin Cities School of Architecture prepares students for the role of design professionals with traditional architecture preparation degrees and the unique Bachelor of Design in Architecture. This degree option offers a foundation in architectural principles with other areas of focus. The Bachelor of Science in Architecture prepares students to continue to the Master of Architecture, accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board and leading to a professional license. The school collaborates with research centers and practice communities to offer students the chance to explore community outreach, sustainability and preservation. Concurrent degree options are also available. The school offers continuing students scholarships, totaling about $165,000, as well as assistanships for graduate students.

CAG Score 96.7

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

51,147 Students

4

University of Florida

The University of Florida School of Architecture offers a Bachelor of Design in Architecture, Master of Architecture programs accredited by the National Architecture Accrediting Board, a Master of Science in Architecture and numerous programs that allow for specialization within the field of architecture and urban planning. The school has CityLab locations in Orlando and Sarasota which use the community as a classroom to study issues surrounding urban growth in ecologically diverse areas and the unique architecture of each city. The Master of Science and doctoral degrees in architecture focuses on history, theory and research in the field. Scholarship opportunities include the Robert L. Outland Women and Minority Scholarship Award and summer internship program ($3,000) and the William L. Proctor Award ($1,000).

CAG Score 96.6

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

49,459 Students

5

University of Washington-Seattle Campus

The University of Washington College of Built Environments offers degrees in architecture and landscape architecture with a focus on sustainable building and urban issues. The Bachelor of Arts in Architectural Design leads to the National Architectural Accrediting Board-approved Master of Architecture. The school offers a dual Master of Architecture and Master of Landscape Architecture and a post-professional master's in high performance building. A centerpiece of the school's curriculum is the award-winning Howard S. Wright Neighborhood Design/Build Studio, where advanced students work with clients on construction projects to benefit the community. The department awards about $100,000 in endowed scholarships and fellowships, including the Norman and Charllotte A. Aehle Scholarship ($4,000), Architecture General Scholarship ($2,300) and William T. Caine Memorial Fund ($2,000).

CAG Score 96.5

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

44,784 Students

6

University of California-Los Angeles

The School of Arts and Architecture at UCLA offers hands-on experience and cross-discipline collaboration in design and urban planning through its cityLAB, Experiential Technologies Center and The Now Institute. Junior-level students are eligible for the two-year bachelor's degree leading to the Master of Architecture. The professional master's program is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board and offers the opportunity to complete coursework in urban planning. Research and theoretical studies are the focus of the Masters of Arts and doctoral programs. Financial aid includes scholarships, teaching assistantships, research awards, need-based awards and work-study. Graduate students are considered for competitively awarded recruitment fellowships worth about $23,000 annually.

CAG Score 96.5

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

41,845 Students

7

CUNY City College

The Spitzer School of Architecture at City College of New York grants a bachelor's degree in Architecture as well as master's degrees in Architecture, Urban Landscape Architecture, Urban Design, and Sustainability in the Urban Environment. It is the only public school of architecture in New York City. Undergrads may earn a Bachelor of Science in Architecture in four years or take a fifth year to earn the B.Arch., a professional degree.The B.Arch. program offers a concentration in Architectural History. The Master of Architecture program is a three-year program that combines required classes with electives so students may study areas of interest to them. The Master of Landscape Architecture program also takes three years to complete.

CAG Score 96.4

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

15,579 Students

8

Iowa State University

The Architecture and Landscape Architecture programs at Iowa State University are part of the College of Design, which requires all undergrads to spend their first year in the Core Design Program before applying for a specific program. Classes are held in a studio environment. The five-year Bachelor of Architecture program prepares students to become a licensed architect. The program is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board. The Bachelor in Landscape Architecture program also takes five years and is accredited by the Landscape Architecture Accreditation Board of the American Society of Landscape Architects. Iowa State also grants master's degrees in both Landscape Architecture and Architecture. The Barbara King Landscape Architecture Scholarship ($2,500) is given annually based on entrepreneurial spirit.

CAG Score 96.3

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

34,435 Students

9

Brigham Young University-Idaho

Brigham Young University in Idaho offers a two-year Applied Associate Degree in Architectural Technology that requires students to take 60 credit hours, including classes in architecture and construction. Several scholarships are available for students in the program. The Boise Chapter of the National Association of Women in Construction offers scholarships for full-time students interested in a job in the construction field. The Building Contractors Association of Southwestern Idaho offers a scholarship to students who work for or have a family member employed by a member company of the organization. Students whose parent works for The Home Depot are eligible for the Orange Scholar Scholarship program, open to full-time students.

CAG Score 96.3

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

36,624 Students

10

University of Massachusetts Amherst

Arts and sciences come together at the University of Massachusettes-Amherst Department of Architecture. Students may take classes through the five college consortium towards the Bachelor of Fine Arts Architecture. Those focusing on architecture studies will prepare for the Master of Architecture, accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board, with a strong foundation in design, technology, and history. Students can participate in an immersive, for-credit semester in sustainable design and building that culminates in the construction of an innovative, high-performance shelter designed by the team. As the only public institution offering a Master of Architecture in New England, students from surrounding states are eligible for reduced tuition. Graduate students also have the opportunity to apply for assistantships or externships.

CAG Score 96.2

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

28,635 Students

11

Barnard College

Barnard College's architecture program is a liberal arts program leading to a Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Architecture. Students may select the architecture major, a studio-based program that requires them to take 14 classes, or the history and theory of architecture major, which requires them to complete 16 classes and a thesis. Students in either major take some studio classes, some history/theory courses, and must complete a three-course cluster of classes that focuses on an issue they are interested in and treats it in cross-disciplinary terms; an example of a cluster subject might be sustainability or digital design. Students interested in a professional architecture degree will continue on to a graduate program.

CAG Score 96.1

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

2,573 Students

12

Michigan State University

With Michigan State's Campus as Arboretum program, landscape architecture students are surrounded by a living learning laboratory. MSU offers a Bachelor's Degree in Landscape Architecture and a dual degree option where students can earn their BLA and a Master of Environmental Design. The bachelor program takes four and a half years and the master's program takes five. Study abroad is built into the program, with most Landscape Architecture students participating in the spring semester of their junior year. Students take classes on campus for eight weeks, then complete the courses overseas at a location chosen by the faculty for that term. The university offers generous financial aid for the overseas program. MSU is accredited by the Landscape Architecture Accreditation Board.

CAG Score 96.1

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

50,081 Students

13

Ferris State University

Ferris State University awards an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree in Architectural Technology and a Bachelor of Science in Architecture and Sustainability. Students who complete the AAS degree can continue on to earn the BS in another two years. Both programs emphasize sustainability, and class projects are designed to encourage students to think about sustainability in the built environment. Ferris State students focus on architectural and community planning issues that small towns face, giving them insight into real issues clients face. Visiting professors and visiting lecturers allow students to connect with professionals in the field. The college awards many scholarships, including the Russell and Avis Gerber Endowed Scholarship given to a full-time sophomore enrolled in the Architectural Technology program.

CAG Score 96.0

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

14,600 Students

14

California State Polytechnic University-Pomona

Both the Bachelor of Architecture (B. Arch.) and the Master of Architecture (M. Arch.) programs offered by the Department of Architecture at Cal Poly Pomona have been accredited by the National Architecture Accrediting Board (NAAB) until 2022. The B. Arch. Program follows a five-year curriculum and covers topics that include architecture theory and history, building technology, sustainability, codes, and professional practice. The focus of the program is on the design laboratory. Lectures are closely coordinated with the required studio sequence to provide students with ample opportunities to demonstrate and integrate classroom knowledge in their design projects. M. Arch. students can select a concentration in either sustainability or historic preservation. The M. Arch. program is designed to be completed in three years.

CAG Score 96.0

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

23,966 Students

15

University of Wyoming

The University of Wyoming Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering offers tracks in structural systems and mechanical systems, leading to a Bachelor of Architectural Engineering. Accredited by the ABET, the College of Engineering and Applied Science is also recognized as a Tier-1 school for recognized academic excellence and research. Architectural Mechanical Engineers specialize in the design of HVAC, plumbing, fire protection and other building systems. The structural design option looks at soils, statics and structural competency in building materials to combine function with aesthetics. The school's trustees approved a Master of Science in Architectural Engineering in March 2015. Financial aid opportunities include the Undergraduate Engineering Scholars Program, the Joe Banner Memorial Scholarship and the Julie Lynn Butterworth Scholarship (awards vary).

CAG Score 95.9

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

12,820 Students

16

Pennsylvania Highlands Community College

Pennsylvania Highlands Community College offers an Associate of Applied Science in Architectural/Civil: CAD and Design Technology. In this program, students will learn how to use computer technology to generate drawings and other graphical elements in the engineering design process. Students who pursue this degree often go on to become CADD technicians, CAD operators, structural technicians, take-off/estimators, survey CADD technicians, architectural CADD technicians, and junior designers. Students in this program will take such courses as Computer Aided Drafting, Architectural Blueprint Reading, Building System - Architectural, and Building Component - HVAC.

CAG Score 95.8

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

2,470 Students

17

University of North Carolina at Charlotte

The University of North Carolina at Charlotte's College of Arts and Architecture embraces a studio culture and collaborative leaning environment for students pursuing architectural degrees. The school offers a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture, preparing students for the National Architectural Accrediting Board-approved Bachelor of Architecture or Masters of Architecture programs. Students may also pursue a dual master's degree in architecture and urban design or a double architectural master's from UNC Charlotte and Tongji University in Shanghi, China. Scholarships include Shook/Kelley Design Scholarship, School of Architecture Alumni Scholarship, and LS3P College of Architecture Scholarship, as well as a number of scholarships offered by chapters of the American Institute of Architects in North Carolina.

CAG Score 95.8

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

27,238 Students

18

University of South Florida-Main Campus

The University of South Florida School of Architecture and Community Design focuses on urban architecture with an emphasis on design and studio courses. It's home to the Florida Center for Community Design and Research, students and faculty work with interdisciplinary teams to find sustainable solutions to community problems, such as neighborhood revitalization and creative use of abandoned developments. The Master of Architecture program is a professional degree accredited by the National Architecture Accrediting Board and is designed for those who have completed pre-professional degrees or non-architectural undergraduate degrees. Scholarship opportunities include the Masonry Contractors Scholarship, H. Dean Rowe, FAIA Scholarship, and Milo Smith Scholarships (award amounts vary).

CAG Score 95.8

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

41,938 Students

19

University of California-Berkeley

The University of California-Berkeley encourages an environment of innovation and collaboration through unique research centers and hands-on learning opportunities in its College of Environmental Design. Offering undergraduate degrees in architecture, landscape architecture, sustainable environmental design and urban studies, the college emphasizes the responsible use of resources and conservation of historically and culturally important aspects of a community. Graduate students may pursue a professional Master of Architecture, accredited by the National Architecture Accrediting Board, and be eligible for an architectural license, or an academic degree. Financial aid includes scholarships, such as the Architecture Undergraduate Scholarships ($500 to $5,000), with graduate fellowships also available to those seeking a master's degree.

CAG Score 95.8

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

37,565 Students

20

Texas A & M University-Kingsville

Architectural engineering at Texas A&M-Kingsville uses an interdisciplinary approach to prepare students for work in structural engineering. The Bachelor of Architectural Engineering is accredited by Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, Inc., one of less than 20 accredited architectural engineering programs in the U.S. Coursework includes design, building and construction, structural analysis and environmental systems. A final class is the senior design project, which develops leadership and teamwork while designing structural and service systems. Projects also include working with the Institute of Architectural Engineering Heritage, documenting heritage sites and and their cultural impact. Scholarships include the Frank H. Dotterweich College of Engineering Scholarship ($1,000) and the COE Engineering New Student Scholarship (up to $2,000).

CAG Score 95.7

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

13,246 Students

21

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The Illinois School of Architecture at UIUC offers Bachelor of Science (BS) and Master of Science (MS) degrees in architectural studies. The MS degree is suited for students preparing for an academic career and hones a student's research skills in environmental design. The school also offers a two-year Master of Architecture (M.Arch) program that is accredited by the National Architectural Accreditation Board (NAAB). M.Arch students have the option of enrolling in one of the current joint degree programs: M.Arch/Master of Urban Planning, M.Arch/MBA, M.Arch/MS in Civil Engineering - Construction Management, and M.Arch/MS in Civil Engineering - Structures. The M.Arch+2 program is designed for students with a non-architecture bachelor's degree. There is also a Doctor of Philosophy in Architecture and Landscape Architecture degree available.

CAG Score 95.7

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

45,140 Students

22

University of Idaho

The University of Idaho College of Art and Architecture offers a well-rounded foundation in all areas of architectural design, planning and construction as students earn a bachelor's degree or the National Architectural Accrediting Board-accredited Master's of Architecture. The college offers seamless bachelor's and master's degree programs in landscape architecture in a region offering rural and urban landscape study. Trans-disciplinary curriculum bundles help prepare students to work in a variety of fields, all with a focus on gaining real-world experience. The transition from undergraduate to graduate-level courses offers students the opportunity to complete professional degrees more quickly. Scholarships include the John H. Callendar Architecture, Columbia Paint, Gifford David Pierce Memorial and H. James Marshall Architecture (award amounts vary).

CAG Score 95.7

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

11,702 Students

23

University of Georgia

The University of Georgia College of Environment and Design offers bachelor's and master's degrees in landscape architecture, with a focus on design, creativity, and conservation of natural resources and cultural treasures. The studio-based program lets students get their hands in the dirt, working with plants, historic preservation and site design. The Master of Landscape Architecture is accredited by the Landscape Architecture Accreditation Board and the American Society of Landscape Architects. Graduate certificate programs are also offered in specialized areas, such as environmental ethics, historic preservation, and geographic information science. Scholarships offered include the Hubert B. Owens Landscape Architecture Scholarship ($1,000), the Environment and Design Scholarship and Randolph and the Helen Marshall Scholarship (award amounts vary).

CAG Score 95.7

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

35,197 Students

24

West Virginia University

West Virginia University's Davis College seeks to find the highest and best use of land. Its Bachelor of Landscape Architecture program emphasizes social, ecological and aesthetic factors to design urban and rural outdoor spaces. The school limits enrollment in the first-year studio to 50 students, with a portfolio assessment required for continued studies past the second year. Students are to demonstrate effective application of design and construction skills to solve unique challenges of different projects, including recreation, conservation and urban development. The program is accredited by the American Society of Landscape Architects and boasts a 100 percent employment rate for graduates. Scholarships include the RGS Scholarship ($1,000), Jack Paules Scholarship ($750) and the Paul Nesselroad Scholarship ($400).

CAG Score 95.6

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

29,175 Students

25

University of Illinois at Chicago

The University of Illinois-Chicago School of Architecture draws inspiration from the diverse architecture of the unique city, helping students understand the history found there and envision a new future. Foundations are laid in the Bachelor's of Architecture program for technical confidence and development of an aesthetic. Students also gain a practical education through a network of professional offices. The Master of Architecture degree leads to professional licensing and is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board while a Master of Science builds on those professional skills in a studio-centered course. Scholarships include the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (up to $10,000), the American Concrete Institute ($3,000) and the American Council of Engineering Committees ProNet Scholarship ($5,000).

CAG Score 95.6

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

27,969 Students

26

SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Combining nature, art, technology and science, the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry helps prepare landscape architects to shape outdoor spaces to balance the needs of residents with environmental concerns. Students learn to creatively apply ecological principles and new technology. As part of the experience, all undergraduate students are required to complete a capstone project where they delve into a specific design-related topic. Both the undergraduate and graduate degree programs are accredited by the Landscape Architectural Accreditation Board. ESF Presidential Scholarships ($3,000) and National Scholarships ($8,000) are awarded to outstanding students, and the four-year Haudenosaune Scholar Awards ($5,000 per year) is also available. Children of alumni also qualify for Legacy Scholarships ($250 per semester).

CAG Score 95.5

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

2,200 Students

27

University at Buffalo

The University at Buffalo is home to the only school of architecture in the SUNY system, and it has programs for undergraduate and graduate students. The Bachelor of Science in Architecture is a pre-professional program, and students who want a professional degree must earn a Master of Architecture. The Department of Architecture offers the two programs in a 4-plus-2 configuration, meaning students spend four years in the undergraduate program and two in the master's program. For master's candidates who didn't study architecture as undergrads, UB offers a 3.5-year M.Arch. program. The department also grants a Master of Science in Architecture, a nonprofessional degree for students who are interested in research in fields such as historic preservation or situated technology.

CAG Score 95.5

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

29,995 Students

28

Rutgers University

The Masters in Landscape Architecture program at Rutgers University focuses on the planning and design of build-out conditions, designing for land where a general plan has already determined the density allowed, such as in metropolitan areas where open space is scarce. This skill is in demand in urban areas around the country. Faculty specialties include landscape remediation and ecological studies. Rutgers offers both a professional and post-professional Masters of Landscape Architecture. The Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture is also accredited by the American Society of Landscape Architects as a professional program. The school awards many grants and scholarships specifically for landscape architecture students, including the Roy H. DeBoer Travel Prize (about $2,000) for students completing their junior year.

CAG Score 95.5

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

48,378 Students

29

Northeast Community College

Northeast Community College offers an Associate of Applied Science in Architectural Drafting that prepares students to create architectural drawings for residential and commercial buildings. The A.A.S. degree requires a minimum of 73 credits of coursework, including 57 credits of required core courses in subjects like architectural drafting, construction materials, computer assisted drafting, surveying, civil drafting and structural analysis. Drafting students can also participate in student organizations like the Drafting Club, in which they work on campus projects such as the College's Corn Maze.

CAG Score 95.5

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

5,061 Students

30

The University of Texas at Arlington

Texas University-Arlington has combined its School of Architecture with the School of Urban and Public Affairs, providing a holistic approach to design, architecture and urban planning. The Bachelor of Science in Architecture is a pre-professional program preparing students for the Master of Architecture, accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board, or the Master of Landscape Architecture, accredited by the Landscape Architectural Accreditation Board. The curriculum draws from the humanities, arts, and sciences to provide a solid foundation for design aesthetic, structural integrity and cultural impact. Students may take part in internships or service learning opportunities. The school awards Texas Architectural Foundation Scholarships (amount varies), the Dallas Architecture Foundation Scholarships ($2,000) and the United Masonry Contractors Association Scholarship ($2,500).

CAG Score 95.4

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

39,740 Students

31

Oklahoma State University-Main Campus

Architecture and Architectural Engineering majors work side-by-side at Oklahoma State University as they pursue five-year professional bachelor's degrees. OSU's Architecture program is centered in the design studio, where students use technology to help in design projects. The college has a 40-year record of outstanding achievement in national student design competitions. Architectural Engineering students focus on structural engineering while developing an understanding of the problems faced by architects. The university also offers a five-year professional Bachelor of Landscape Architecture. BLA students can take advantage of study abroad and internship opportunities to broaden their education. All the professional degree programs are nationally accredited.

CAG Score 95.3

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

25,962 Students

32

SUNY College of Technology at Delhi

SUNY Delhi offers an Associate of Applied Science in Architectural Technology and a Bachelor of Technology in Architectural Design and Building. The bachelor's degree prepares graduates to work in a design or building firm or to enter a master's program in architecture to earn a professional degree. In the program, students gain drawing and drafting skills, design a variety of residential units, and work directly with clients in group projects. All the instructors in the program are architects, engineers, or construction professionals with real world experience. Program majors have 24/7 access to drafting studios and fully equipped construction laboratories. Students who earn the A.A.S. in Architectural Technology can transfer into the bachelor's program to continue their studies.

CAG Score 95.3

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

3,598 Students

33

University of Colorado Denver

From sustainable building to historic preservation, the University of Colorado-Denver's College of Architecture and Planning prepares students for a variety of architecture fields with degrees offered in architecture, landscape architecture, urban and regional planning, urban design and historic preservation and advanced degrees in design and planning. Students have the opportunity to put their knowledge to action through designing and building projects for Native American reservations, in developing nations or in conjunction with area non-profit agencies. Documenting the historic buildings in the region is an ongoing project, with internships available. In addition, scholarships are available, such as the $3,000 Alumni Association Graduate Scholarship or the Bixler Scholarship (up to $10,000).

CAG Score 95.3

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

22,791 Students

34

The University of Texas at Austin

The UT-Austin School of Architecture offers bachelor's degrees in architecture and architectural engineering and master's degrees in architecture, architectural engineering, environmental design, landscape architecture and architectural history and criticism. The Bachelor of Architecture focuses on design and is a pre-professional degree and can be combined with the architectural engineering degree. The five-year bachelor's program and the Master of Architecture are accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board. Upper-level students can take part in the Professional Residency Program, a full-time internship where students gain practical experience and expand professional skills. The school offers scholarships to new and continuing students ($500 to $5,000). The Texas Architectural Foundation provides scholarships to all levels of students (awards vary).

CAG Score 95.2

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

51,313 Students

35

SUNY College of Technology at Alfred

The Architectural and Design Department at Alfred State offers a five-year Bachelor of Architecture degree as well as Bachelor of Science and Associate in Applied Science degrees in architectural technology. As of January 2014, the BArch program was awarded initial candidacy status by the NAAB (National Architectural Accrediting Board). All three programs share coursework during the first two years; the BS and BArch programs share some courses during the third and fourth years. Applicants are required to submit a portfolio to be considered for the BArch program. Alfred State offers an optional semester abroad through an agreement with the International Language Institute in Sorrento, Italy. Students have access to well-equipped design studios in addition to digital fabrication and material testing labs.

CAG Score 95.2

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

3,661 Students

36

Louisiana State University

Louisiana State University offers Bachelor of Architecture and Master of Architecture degrees. The Bachelor of Architecture degree requires 162 credits of coursework and can be completed in five years. The curriculum is divided into three phases, with phase one devoted to general education requirements and the completion of initial architecture course requirements, phase two devoted to specific architectural projects (including a comprehensive design project), and phase three devoted to a semester-long project that uses all students' skills and knowledge. The Master of Architecture requires 36 credits of coursework and can be completed in two years by those with pre-professional architecture degrees and three and half years by those without. Graduate assistantships are available for master's students, which provide tuition remission and a salary.

CAG Score 95.2

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

31,044 Students

37

University of Central Florida

The University of Central Florida offers a Bachelor of Design in Architecture through a 2+2+2 program in cooperation with the Valencia Community College and a Master of Architecture through the University of Florida CityLab in Orlando. The bachelor's program prepares students for careers in construction management and industrial design. UCF offers cooperative learning opportunities and internships, connecting the classroom to real-world applications. Admission to the professional master's program is competitive. The degree offers affordability by beginning the 2+2+2 program at a community college. The Orlando Foundation for Architecture offers a scholarship for students, with internship opportunities also available.

CAG Score 95.2

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

60,767 Students

CAG Score 95.1

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

4,035 Students

39

University of Nebraska-Lincoln

The Bachelor of Science in Design offered at the University of Nebraska Lincoln is considered a pre-architecture program that leads directly to the Master of Architecture (MArch) degree. The MArch program is accredited by the National Architectural Accredited Board (NAAB) and requires an additional two years of study. For students who have a baccalaureate degree in a non-architectural field, a three-year MArch program is available. Qualified MArch students are given the opportunity to pursue dual degree programs in business (MArch/Master of Business Administration) and in regional planning (MArch/Master of Community and Regional Planning). UNL also offers a Master of Science in Architecture degree. This is a 36-credit-hour program designed for students who plan to pursue a career in teaching and research.

CAG Score 95.1

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

25,006 Students

40

Florida International University

The College of Architecture + the Arts at Florida International University offers a Master of Architecture program that is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). The program is organized around the following thematic areas: building technology, design, digital technology, history/theory, and professional practice. There are three tracks available. The Undergraduate M.Arch 5/ Undergraduate M.Arch 6 track admits freshmen students as well as students with an associate degree. Applicants who already possess a bachelor's degree in any field are considered for the M.Arch 3 path, which consists of 105 credit-hours and can be completed within three and a half years. Students with a four-year non-professional undergraduate degree in architecture can apply for the M.Arch 2 track, which consists of 60 credit-hours.

CAG Score 95.1

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

49,610 Students

41

Washington State University

The Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture at Washington State University offers a four-year Bachelor of Science in Architectural Studies degree. Students who complete the program can apply to a Master of Architecture program. The university's M.Arch degree is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). The M.Arch program offers three tracks. Track 1 is for students with a BS in Architectural Studies degree from WSU or a professionally accredited program from another university (such as a Bachelor of Architecture degree). Track 2 is for students with a degree in a related field (interior design, landscape architecture, etc.) or architecture degree holders who are looking for more in-depth design experience. Students with a non-architectural undergraduate degree are considered for Track 3.

CAG Score 95.0

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

28,686 Students

42

The University of Texas at San Antonio

CAG Score 95.0

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

28,628 Students

43

University of Houston

The Hines College of Architecture at the University of Houston offers an integrated program focusing on design, with programs in architecture, industrial design, and interior architecture. The five-year Bachelor of Architecture degree and Master of Architecture degree are accredited by the National Architecture Accrediting Board. Graduate design/build studios offer the opportunity to work with regional non-profit organizations to solve unique building problems. The Community Design Resource Center has partnered with more than 15 organizations to address issues of affordable housing, urban planning, and civic projects. The school offers a number of scholarships ranging in awards from $500 to $2,000 and a limited number of instructional assistantships are also available to undergraduate and graduate students.

CAG Score 95.0

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

40,914 Students

44

Missouri University of Science and Technology

Missouri University of Science & Technology offers a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Engineering that is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation of ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology). Students admitted to the program can choose from the following emphasis areas: construction engineering, construction materials, environmental systems, project management, and structural engineering. The curriculum includes courses that cover a range of relevant topics such as contract administration, construction techniques, quality control and assurance, and cost estimating. Architectural engineering students learn how to design and supervise the construction of complex facilities and structures, including the installation of essential systems such as the electrical, communications, and HVAC systems. Qualified students can pursue a dual degree program in architectural engineering and in civil engineering.

CAG Score 94.9

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

8,640 Students

45

Kansas State University

The Architectural Engineering degree program at Kansas State University is structured to create engineering professionals who understand technologically advanced building systems and who are able to bring those systems together as an integrated whole. Students who earn a five-year Bachelor's/Master's in Architectural Engineering can work as engineering consultants or as electrical, structural or mechanical designers. Kansas State also offers master's degrees in Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Interior Architecture and Product Design. The College of Architecture, Planning & Design is nationally accredited and offers five-year professional programs open to high school graduates, transfer students and students who have already earned a degree. Space in these programs is limited and admission is competitive.

CAG Score 94.9

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

24,766 Students

46

University of Utah

The School of Architecture at the University of Utah offers a pre-professional Bachelor of Science in Architectural Studies degree. Upper division coursework includes classes in architectural theory, site and urban design, materials construction, and building technology. Applicants with a bachelor's degree in a non-architecture field are advised to apply to the Master of Architecture (M.Arch) 3+ program. Applicants with a bachelor's degree in an architecture-related field can apply to the M.Arch 2+ program. There is also a Master of Science in Architectural Studies degree available designed for students who want to specialize in a particular area, such as historic preservation, architectural technology, or project delivery. All of the university's graduate degree programs are accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB).

CAG Score 94.8

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

31,515 Students

47

Hutchinson Community College

The Department of Agriculture, Business, Computers and Technology at Hutch Community College (HCC) offers a pre-professional Associate of Arts degree in architecture. Part of the program comprises one year of a typical five-year architecture curriculum at four-year institutions. HCC students who plan to transfer their credits to the five-year architecture program at the University of Kansas will be required to attend a summer session prior to being considered for admission. The completion of a minimum of 64 credit-hours is needed in order to graduate with the AA degree. HCC offers courses that make up an architectural engineering core, however, students with an interest in this field will be required to complete the coursework prescribed within the engineering program.

CAG Score 94.8

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

5,718 Students

48

Lake Land College

Lake Land College offers an Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degree in building construction technology. The curriculum is comprised of 66 credits and offers courses such as technical mathematics, introduction to drafting, plans and specifications, analytical mechanics, constructional surveying layout, and strength of materials. This is a Workforce Ready program that prepares students for immediate employment in the building construction industry right after graduation. Lake Land College also offers an AAS in Computer-aided Design (CAD) program, as well as a CAD certificate for students who wish to enhance or update their drafting skills and knowledge. Students learn how to produce blueprints, modify design plans, create two- and three-dimensional technical illustrations, and craft detailed schematics using state-of-the-art CAD software and hardware.

CAG Score 94.8

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

5,593 Students

49

Arizona State University

The Bachelor of Science in Design - Architectural Studies degree at Arizona State University is offered through the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts. In order to continue in the professional degree program, students must pass a degree milestone at the end of their freshman year. The completion of an internship experience is another requirement for the degree. The institute also offers a Master of Architecture (MArch) degree that is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). A two-year, 56-credit MArch program is available for applicants with a four-year degree in architectural studies from ASU or another accredited school. Applicants with an undergraduate degree in a discipline other than architecture will be considered for the three-year, 96-credit MArch program.

CAG Score 94.7

  • Advanced Placement Credit
  • DSST Credit
  • CLEP Credit
  • ROTC Program

50,320 Students

English

View Colleges

Foreign Language

View Colleges

Graphic Design

View Colleges

History

View Colleges

Urban Planning

View Colleges