M.Arch. Program

Fall 2017 Architecture Design Jury in George T. Silcott Gallery

Master of Architecture Program

Students seeking to study architecture at Howard University beginning in the Fall 2018 semester will enter into the Master of Architecture program. The new configuration of architecture education at Howard University results from the Department of Architecture’s proposal for nomenclature change submitted to the National Architecture Accrediting Board (NAAB) in May 2017. The proposal, approved by NAAB at its July 2017 Board meeting, changes the program nomenclature from a five-year professional Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch.) to a five-year professional Master of Architecture (M.Arch) degree program.

This change in the architecture program is very significant. The new NAAB-approved program provides a continuous sequence from undergraduate to graduate study leading to the five-year Master of Architecture professional degree. The M.Arch. will consist of 171 credit hours divided into three types of courses: 1) Required or core courses; 2) Professional electives which will be designated as concentration areas and open/free electives; and 3) General/Liberal Studies electives.

The Master of Architecture (M.Arch) curriculum (PDF) has a new focus and rigor on research theory as part of the final three semesters of the five-year program—the major curricular distinction between the B.Arch. and the M.Arch. Changes to the curriculum, however, begin with the first/freshmen year of study and continue within the curriculum to ensure better sequencing of knowledge and skillsets gained in preparation for more advanced content. Required courses on research methods during the Spring semester of the fourth year as well as more concentrated thesis courses (prep and design) in the fifth and final year will ensure a more rigorous research-based final project which is typical of Master's level study. At the completion of the five-year program, students receive the professional Master of Architecture degree.

Continuing Howard’s Architectural Education Legacy

The Master of Architecture program is steeped in the tradition of design excellence that began at Howard University in 1911. The new M.Arch. curriculum includes five courses (15 credit hours across three lecture format and two studio courses) in a concentration, which initially focuses on Community Design and Planning. This concentration will build on the historic focus of the Department of Architecture which responded to changes in urban areas following the 1968 rebellions after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Washington, D.C. and the Georgia Avenue corridor, which bounds the Howard campus, were heavily impacted by the riots. Howard University and the Department of Architecture, specifically, responded by its charge to prepare "activist practitioners", a mission that will continue and be strengthened in the M.Arch. program.

This program exposes students to a myriad of opportunities to design efficient and aesthetically pleasing built environments. Students explore a range of architectural typologies, tectonics, and settings and engage a broad perspective on the human environment. This program continues the longstanding tradition of the Department of Architecture to educate, train, and socialize students in a manner that prepares them to participate as leaders in architectural production, regardless of their individual architectural design career direction.

The Master of Architecture program maintains Howard’s commitment to excellence, equality, and leadership to design your future.

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The Howard University Department of Architecture faculty and students are part of a seven-university team funded by a $15 million NASA grant. The grant establishes the Habitats Optimized for Missions of Exploration (HOME) Space Technology Research Institute for Deep Space Habitat Design, one of two space technology research institutes selected by NASA in 2019. Read More >>

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Architecture Professor and Department Chair Hazel Ruth Edwards, Ph.D., has been invited to serve on the Docomomo US 2020 Modernism in America Awards jury. Docomomo US was founded in the United States in 1995, to “share its members’ knowledge of and enthusiasm for modern architecture and design”.Read More >>

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