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Undergraduate Catalog 2016-2017


1200 Architecture Building, 301-405-8000
Dean: David Cronrath
Associate Dean(s): Donald Linebaugh, Gerrit Knaap
Assistant Dean(s): Ingrid Farrell

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’ll 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’ll 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’s 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. 

Special Advantages and Facilities


NAAB - In the United States, most state registration boards require a degree from an accredited professional degree program as a prerequisite for licensure. The National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB), which is the sole agency authorized to accredit U.S. professional degree programs in architecture, recognizes three types of degrees: the Bachelor of Architecture, the Master of Architecture, and the Doctor of Architecture. A program may be granted a 6-year, 3-year, or 2-year term of accreditation, depending on the extent of its conformance with established educational standards.

Doctor of Architecture and Master of Architecture degree programs may consist of a pre-professional undergraduate degree and a professional graduate degree that, when earned sequentially, constitute an accredited professional education. However, the pre-professional degree is not, by itself, recognized as an accredited degree.

The University of Maryland's School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation offers the following NAAB-accredited degree programs:

  • M.Arch (pre-professional degree + 60 graduate credits)
  • M.Arch (non-pre-professional degree + 109 credits)


The school is housed in a modern building providing design workstations for each student, a 300 seat auditorium, and seminar and classroom facilities. The Great Space, an atrium at the center of the School, is the location for collaborative projects, design reviews, critiques, and a variety of events that that bring the architecture program together. Facilities include a well-equipped woodworking and model shop, computer labs, digital output and digital fabrication. The Architecture Library, one of the finest in the nation, offers convenient access to a current circulating collection of more than 34,000 volumes, 8,000 periodicals, and an extensive selection of reference materials. Rare books and special acquisitions include a collection relating to international expositions and the 11,000-volume National Trust for Historic Preservation Library.

Upper level summer programs include travel to Rome, Paris, Turkey, Great Britain, and other countries. Students may earn direct credit doing hands-on restoration work and by attending lectures by visiting architects, preservationists, and scholars. Undergraduate seniors and graduate students may also participate in a Studio Abroad in Florence: Live, study, and learn in the city where Architecture began. You’ll take classes in Leon Battista Alberti’s masterpiece, the Palazzo Ruccellai, and attend studio in a newly renovated building on the banks of the Arno. In addition to learning in the classroom, you will have plenty of opportunity to visit museums, draw in piazzas, learn to speak Italian, and absorb the history of Italy while learning local customs. 

Admission Requirements

http://arch.umd.edu/arch/degree/bachelor-science-architecture for admissions questions.

Freshman Admission. Students from high school gain admission to the Undergraduate Architecture Program through the University's Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Admitted freshmen have access to the necessary advising through their initial semesters to determine if architecture is an appropriate major for their interests and abilities.

Before a student enrolls in either the BA or BS during their third year of study, they must complete the Degree Placement Review Process. This will determine which degree program best fits their interests and talents, as well as, the duration of their studies until graduation. Students should complete the following courses as prerequisites before beginning their junior year:

  • ARCH170 or 171, 225, 226, 200, and 300 with a grade of "C-"
  • MATH120 or MATH220, PHYS121 and one natural science course with a minimum grade of "C-" in all three 

Transfer Admission Requirements. Transfer students who wish to study Architecture must first gain admission to the University and concurrently submit for the Degree Placement Review Process if they wish to be considered for junior standing. Please see above for the requirements. Transfer applicants are strongly encouraged to apply by the priority deadline and should contact the Undergraduate Architecture Advisors as soon as possible at archadvise@umd.edu .

Undergraduate Degree Requirements/Degree Options

All students must complete the following courses in Architecture:

  • ARCH171 – Design Thinking
  • ARCH225 – Architectural World History I
  • ARCH200 – Design Media I
  • ARCH226 – Architectural World History II
  • ARCH300 – Design Media II
  • ARCH201 – Elements & Principles
  • ARCH462 – Methods & Materials I
  • ARCH400 – Architectural Design Studio I
  • ARCH463 – Sustainable Systems

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

  • ARCH401, ARCH402, ARCH403
  • ARCH464, ARCH465, ARCH466
  • ARCH474
  • ARCH4XX – 12 credits

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.

  • ARCH4XX – 36 credits


Entering students are advised by the Undergraduate Advisors located in the School's Main Office. Advising is mandatory for all undergraduate architecture majors each semester. Students must meet with an academic advisor to discuss their academic plan and course selection. Students can make an appointment for advising online by visiting www.arch.umd.edu . Students may also contact the advising office via archadvise@umd.edu . Walk-in appointments may be available. Students may use the archadvise@umd.edu email at any time. Students should always include their full name, UID and contact information in any email correspondence.


Construction Project Management:

A minor in Construction Project Management will prepare students for employment in one of the many careers related to the built environment, such as project management, architectural engineering, design and commercial construction. Students will learn how to manage multiple phases of operation and management in the construction process including building information modeling, cost estimating, project scheduling, construction financing and planning. The Construction Project Management minor is ideal for students in Architecture, Engineering and similar fields. This minor is designed to give students a competitive advantage when applying for a job in the construction industry.

Requirements for the Minor:

1. 12 credits of required courses:

  • ENCE325 - Introduction to Construction Project Management
  • ENCE423 - Project Planning, Estimating & Scheduling
  • ENCE424 - Communication for Project Managers
  • ARCH472 - Building Information Modeling (BIM) Communication & Collaboration

2. 3 credits of approved upper level electives

Approved Student Societies and Professional Organizations

The Architecture Student Assembly represents the student body. Assembly members are elected from undergraduate and graduate classes. Representatives attend Faculty Meetings, serve on committees, and organize the Architecture Program Retrospective at the end of each semester.

The School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation sponsors a chapter of the American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS), the national association for architecture students.  The AIAS chapter sponsors a variety of activities including an annual Career Fair, Beaux Arts Ball, field trips, conferences, workshops, and other events throughout the academic year.

The University of Maryland chapter of NOMAS is affiliated with the national professional organization NOMA. NOMAS is a group of students from a variety of backgrounds pursuing architecture degrees at the undergraduate and graduate levels, interested in contributing to the UMD School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation by building a sense of community based on shared experiences unique to our diverse student body.

USGBC Students – University of Maryland Chapter of the United States Green Building Council is a coalition of undergraduate and graduate students intent on learning about and promoting sustainable design and building practices. Formed in 2007, the group hosts monthly meetings in the Architecture Building.

Alpha Rho Chi (APX) is the national co-ed fraternity for architecture and the allied arts. Its brotherhood unites men and women for the purpose of fellowship and lifelong friendships, as well as professional development. This is exemplified by the fraternity's motto: Fidelitas, Amor et Artes or "Fidelity and Love of the Arts."

Financial Assistance

Many financial awards are offered to freshman upon admission.  Any questions about financial aid for freshman admits should be directed to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions and the Office of Student Financial Aid. 

Each year, the School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation offers a number of merit-based scholarships to qualifying undergraduate students.  Many are offered to students participating in study abroad programs.  Interested students are encouraged to apply for these in early Spring. Information is available at www.arch.umd.edu . Please note that most of these scholarships are reserved for students in the studio sequence of the program.

The Office of Student Financial Aid (OFSA) administers all types of federal, state, and institutional financial assistance programs and, in cooperation with other University offices, participates in the awarding of scholarships to deserving students.  Freshmen and sophomores are strongly encouraged to visit the OFSA early in their tenure at the University of Maryland to determine any scholarships they may be eligible for in the following years.

For more information, visit: www.financialaid.umd.edu .

Research Units

National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education
1112 Preinkert Fieldhouse, College Park,301-405-6788
Dr. Gerrit Knaap

The National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education is a non-partisan center for research and leadership training on Smart Growth and related land use issues nationally and internationally. Founded in 2000, the National Center for Smart Growth is a cooperative venture of four University of Maryland schools: Architecture, Planning and Preservation; Public Policy; Agriculture and Natural Resources; and Engineering. The mission of the Center is to bring the diverse resources of the University of Maryland and a network of national experts to bear on issues of land development, resource preservation and urban growth -- the nature of our communities, our landscape and our quality of life -- through interdisciplinary research, outreach and education, thereby establishing the University as the national leader in this field.

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