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Graduate Architecture Program Information

M.Arch.1

ADVANCED RESEARCH AND DESIGN

Offered at: Blacksburg Campus and Alexandria (National Capital Region - NCR) Campus

The M.Arch.1, Advanced Research and Design program is a post-professional graduate course of study intended for the student who has previously obtained a professional degree in Architecture (B.Arch.), or an equivalent in academic and professional experience. Students are provided the opportunity and academic resources to pursue definitive, experimental design investigations or research in design-related subject areas, according to their special interests. Students in this program are given advanced standing, as determined by the graduate faculty, for up to 24 credit hours toward completion of the 54 required graduate credit hours, typically resulting in a Plan of Study of 30 credit hours, usually requiring at least one calendar year of study, beginning in the Fall Semester and normally concluding at the end of the following Summer Semester. Students in the M.Arch.1 program may elect to enroll at the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center (National Capital Region - NCR) for all or a portion of their required studies. Students in the M.Arch.1 program may also spend a semester participating in the Europe Study Abroad Travel or Residency programs.

ARCHITECTURE AND URBANISM LABORATORY

This design laboratory emphasizes problem definition and operational design methodologies across an expanded range of environmental scales. The scope of design investigations includes the relation of individual buildings to the environment in comprehensive terms, with particular emphasis on the complexity that exists at the urban scale. Also studied are methods for identification of needs and the coordination of complex variables, information, and resources, leading to the conceptualization and development of the design of components of the built environment.

Students in the M.Arch.1, Advanced Research and Design Program must complete at least one semester (6 credit hours) of Architecture and Urbanism Laboratory (ARCH 5715 or 5716). This lab may not be taken concurrently with Research and Thesis (ARCH 5994).

ARCHITECTURE AND URBANISM SEMINAR

This seminar reviews contemporary concepts in architecture and urban design. Significant works of architecture and the theories of their authors are evaluated critically through precedent studies supported by readings of the architects’ ideas informing the work. The purpose is to assist students in articulating their own positions within the discipline of architecture.

Students in the M.Arch.1, Advanced Research and Design Program must complete one semester (3 credit hours) of Architecture and Urbanism Seminar (ARCH 5705 or 5706). Off-campus students at the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center must complete two semesters (6 credit hours) of Architecture and Urbanism Seminar (ARCH 5705-5706) plus one semester (3 credit hours) of Theory of Urban Form (ARCH 5614).

BUILDING SCIENCE COURSES

Building Science Courses provide students with advanced study in the principles of environmental science and building systems technologies. Core courses which are regularly offered on the main campus in Blacksburg, based on faculty availability, are:

ARCH 5035, 5036 Advanced Environmental Controls
ARCH 5045 Environmental Design Research
ARCH 5055, 5056 Advanced Building Structures

Multiple sections of each of the above courses, comprised of separate, but related subject areas, may be offered each year. On-campus students in the M.Arch.1, Advanced Research and Design Program may select coursework in Building Science for elective credit.

TOPICS IN ARCHITECTURE HISTORY AND THEORY

Course offerings under this heading involve the study of selected topics in the history and theory of architecture. Each course is organized by one or more faculty as an intensive presentation of a selected range of theoretical issues or of a specified historical period, focusing on the analysis of architectural works and ideas within their cultural context.

Students in the M.Arch.1, Advanced Research and Design Program must complete one semester (3 credit hours) of coursework in Topics in Architecture History and Theory (ARCH 5134). Additional semesters of ARCH 5134, addressing different topics, may be taken up to a maximum of 12 total credit hours.

ELECTIVES

Elective course offerings are intended to reinforce and support the student’s professional development and the broad scope of individual interests students bring to the program. In addition to the elective course offerings in other departments within the College of Architecture and Urban Studies, students are encouraged to study in other disciplines in other Colleges within the University. Although students may define their own areas of interest, regularly offered graduate elective courses in Architecture include:

ARCH 5115, 5116 Media and the Environment Workshop
ARCH 5125, 5126 Materials Processes Workshop
ARCH 5134 Topics in Architecture History and Theory
ARCH 5064 Computer Applications in Design
ARCH 5624 Urban Design Seminar

Each year Special Study options (ARCH 5984) are offered with varying content. Subject to the limits outlined in the Graduate Catalog, these courses, as well as ARCH 5974, Independent Study, may also be used for Elective credit.

THESIS

Each candidate for the M.Arch. degree is required to produce a design or research thesis to demonstrate their contribution to the investigation of complex questions inherent in the discipline of architecture. In terms of faculty and facilities, the full resources of the College and University are available to the student in support of the thesis effort. Faculty from other disciplines, normally outside of involvement in the environmental design process, are encouraged to participate. The thesis year should provide the opportunity for maturation of those skills and attitudes students have acquired. The thesis culminates in a final examination (defense), in which the student’s architectural design and/or research work, body of scholarship, and professional inquiry are presented to the advisory committee and student colleagues, and in the thesis document, which should demonstrate each student’s academic accomplishment and professional potential.

Research and Thesis (ARCH 5994) is offered every academic term and the credit is variable. M.Arch. students must complete a minimum of six total credit hours of Research and Thesis; a maximum of 10 total credit hours of Research and Thesis may count toward the 54 minimum graduate credit hours required on the Plan of Study (9 credits of Research & Thesis recommended). Additional guidance for thesis scheduling, review, and format is available from the Master of Architecture Program faculty. (Please see graduate program policy: Thesis and Graduation Policies, Procedures, and Guidelines.)

M.ARCH.1 - ADVANCED RESEARCH AND DESIGN
TYPICAL PROGRAM OF STUDY (On-campus)

Fall                           Spring
 (6) ARCH 5715 (Recommended)	(6) ARCH 5994 (Required)
       Arch. & Urbanism Lab	      Research & Thesis

 (3) ARCH 5705 (Required)       (3) ARCH 5706 (Required)          
       Arch. & Urbanism Seminar       Arch. & Urbanism Seminar
                                               	      
 (3) Bldg. Science. Course or   (3) Bldg. Science Course or
       Elective, 5000 level	      Elective, 5000 level

 (3) Elective 5000 level
____	                       ____
 15	                        12

Summer	
 (3) ARCH 5994 (Required)	
       Research & Thesis	
____
  3	

Total Graduate Credit Hours             30 (min.)
Advanced Standing for Fifth Year
      Undergraduate (B.Arch.)           24 (max.)
                                       ____
Total Hours Required for M.Arch.        54 (min.)


M.ARCH.1 - ADVANCED RESEARCH AND DESIGN
TYPICAL PROGRAM OF STUDY (Off-campus: Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center)

Fall	                       Spring
 (6) ARCH 5715 (Required)	(6) ARCH 5994 (Required)
       Arch. & Urbanism Lab	      Research & Thesis

 (3) ARCH 5705 (Required)	(3) ARCH 5706 (Required)
       Arch. & Urbanism Seminar	      Arch. & Urbanism Seminar

 (3) ARCH 5614 (Required)	(3) Elective, 5000 level
       Theory of Urban Form	      ARCH 5134 (Recommended)   
                                        Topics in Arch. History
 (3) ARCH 5134 (Required)                 & Theory
       Topics in Arch. History
         & Theory
____	                       ____
 15	                        12

Summer	
 (3) ARCH 5994 (Required)	
       Research & Thesis	
____	
  3

Total Graduate Credit Hours             30 (min.)
Advanced Standing for Fifth Year
      Undergraduate (B.Arch.)           24 (max.)
                                       ____
Total Hours Required for M.Arch.        54 (min.)

Last Modified: May 31, 2016