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Graduate Architecture Program Information

Graduate Advising

Following initial check-in, on-campus students attend an orientation meeting for new graduate students in the School of Architecture + Design, in which the Graduate Architecture Program Chair will review general program policies and procedures, tour school facilities, and inform the students of registration procedures. At this meeting, on-campus M.Arch. students will be also informed of initial laboratory and seminar meeting times, and each student will be assigned a desk in the design laboratory. All new graduate students are encouraged to meet individually with their academic advisor to review the curriculum materials mailed earlier in the summer, to discuss the student’s program of study and any curriculum modifications pertinent to the student, and to answer questions.

The Graduate Architecture Program Chair (for on-campus M.Arch. students), the Director of the Washington-Alexandria Center (for off-campus M.Arch. students), or the Director of the Master of Science in Architecture Program (for MS.Arch. students) will serve as the student’s principal academic advisor until the student establishes an advisory committee on the Plan of Study. Students may also consult their design studio instructor (M.Arch.) or the coordinator for their specific research concentration (MS.Arch.) for further academic and professional advice. From the time the Plan of Study is approved until the student completes the degree program, the advisory committee chair acts as the student’s primary academic advisor. Review of a student’s academic progress occurs each semester through presentation and critique of the student’s work. The overall academic performance of all graduate students is evaluated annually, at the end of the spring semester, by their academic advisor, and the student is informed of any concerns regarding progress towards the degree. Further, immediately prior to the beginning of the thesis year, the work of each on-campus student in the M.Arch. program must be reviewed by the Graduate Architecture Program Chair to determine if the student may be permitted to proceed with the thesis; the student is informed of any concerns regarding his or her preparation to begin thesis work.

During the course of the thesis, the student’s advisory committee acts in the capacity of principal review and advising team, monitoring academic progress. The chair of the advisory committee is expected to meet regularly with the student to advise the student of preparation required for immediate and future thesis progress. Committee members are expected to make every effort to attend meetings as arranged by the student or by the advisory committee chair and to assist the advisory committee chair in guiding the direction of the student’s thesis. During the defense, the thesis advisory committee also normally forms the examining committee. The thesis advisory committee chair assumes responsibility as a principal editor of the thesis document.

Faculty are advised to limit annual committee participation to twelve candidates or less, and to limit the number of committees chaired to five or less. The Graduate Architecture Program Chair will request student evaluation of committee members periodically and will evaluate faculty performance on thesis advisory committees annually.

Last Modified: July 06, 2016