Master of Architecture Program Overview
The Master of Architecture Program at the University of Minnesota prepares students for the practice and discipline of architecture as a speculative, analytic, and investigative endeavor. Through rigorous methods of inquiry developed in the design studio, lectures and seminars, students acquire the breadth of knowledge required of the professional architect: the techniques and processes of representation, communication and analysis; the history and theory of making architecture and urban form for human use; and the technology, systems, processes and economics of construction and practice. This professional degree program is fully accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB).
At Minnesota, we believe architects develop a constructive balance with the many and diverse elements at play across the social spectrum. These include the individual and the community; private interests and the common good; the natural and the built environment; and others. This requires a comprehensive education with a thorough understanding of the cultural, economic and technological forces that shape our built environment.
We Build On Tradition
Architecture is its own mode of thought with a unique and particular way of examining our environment and for finding solutions to make life more livable. Today design plays a expansive role in society and long-established architectural principles are more important than ever. The design studio has evolved as the pre-eminent tool to teach design and explore design thinking.
We Embrace Challenges
In a world that faces complex and urgent issues involving globalization, climate change and new technologies, our goal is to produce graduates who have the will and passion to engage these challenges. We have created a curriculum that instills in our students the confidence to grapple with large, messy problems and impassion them to ask the big questions and probe the specific ways to examine solutions. Throughout the 3-year program, students are pushed to think about and expand the definition of traditional architectural practice by including factors such as sustainability, research, cultural diversity and community outreach.
We Expect Change
Traditional systems of higher education, those determined by old notions of disciplines or driven by the utility of specialized knowledge, often fail when confronted with the dynamic character of changes triggered by globalization and new technologies. Expanding the role of architecture to encompass challenging urgent issues is important, but there are times when this is not enough. Sometimes the very role of architecture needs to be challenged. In these times, completely new ways of thinking must be encouraged.
Award Winning Curriculum
The UMN School of Architecture’s new M.Arch Curriculum was the 2008 recipient of the AIA Education Honor Award.