A masters in architecture is a great investment for driven architects who want to excel in their field. Some professions will maximize earning and growth potential without this extra degree but architects stand to increase their earning potential by double with a Masters degree.
If you are already a busy professional but want to increase your knowledge, skill set, and pay there are programs just for you. When it comes to earning your masters, in many cases, the colleges understand that the students are not fresh from school they are busy people in the midst of already excelling in the same career field. Prior work or education experience is not always a requirement to get into a Masters in Architecture degree program though, many students will pursue that path after earning their Bachelors with just a few refresher prereqs.
How Do I Choose The Right School For My Goals?
Consider how much time you can dedicate. There are full-time intensive programs and more flexible options that are all valuable in learning and field experience opportunities. You want to find a well-rated school that fits your time schedule, learning style, and of course tuition budget.
Top 12 Schools To Earn Your Masters in Architecture
1. University of California – Los Angeles
The University of California – Los Angeles offers their M.Arch degree that takes three years to complete. The school states that students with no formal training and a Bachelor’s degree in unrelated fields but those students should familiarize themselves with the history and culture of Architecture before applying. If you are not a working architect and are interested in pursuing a new field, or if you are already experienced UCLA is well-reviewed as one of the top options in the nation for quality education, fair tuition, and plenty of hands-on work to build competence and confidence in the field.
- Tuition: $13,240 In-State, $42,994 Non-Resident
- Graduate Enrollment: 12,828
2. The University of Texas at Austin
The University of Texas at Austin offers many MA in Architecture specialties including Architectural History, General Studies, Historic Preservation, Sustainable Design, and Urban Design. If you have a non-architectural BA and if you have already begun on the path with your BA you can apply to steer your career in the direction you want to take. The school of Architecture at The University of Texas strives to provide a supportive culture where students can grow and learn freely. The curriculum includes a balance of hands-on practice and principal studies.
- Tuition: $10,824 In-State, $38,326 Non-Resident
- Graduate Enrollment: 10,927
3. Virginia Polytechnic and State University
Virginia Polytechnic and State University offers an extensive architecture and design program based on STEM learning that includes opportunities to study abroad and final thesis requirements. The site states that the program has flexible options and extensions after the first year of core studies. When a program is STEM-designated students who are here on F-1 visas can extend their stay, so this is vital information for many. Their program has made the spot as one of the top five in national stats for the past several years.
- Tuition: $13,691 In-State, $32,835 Non-Resident
- Graduate Enrollment: 7,083
4. Boston Architectural College
Boston Architectural College offers small class sizes, options for specialization, and the entire college is focused on architecture and design so it is easy to see why it is a top choice for M.Arch majors. They are one of the more flexible options and have a work by day study by night for qualified applicants, so you do not have to put your dreams on hold if you cannot commit to the more rigorous requirements.
- Tuition: $21,924
- Graduate Enrollment: 374
5. University of Florida
The University of Florida is located in central to north Florida and is known for its high standards in education and medical technology. Its school of design and architecture is not to be underestimated though. If you are interested in attending a rigorous program that also offers the flexibility of three different curriculum track offerings for working adults or full-time students or variations in between then check out their requirements and apply next term.
- Tuition: $6,381 In-State, $28,659 Non-Resident
- Graduate Enrollment: 17,002
6. University of Missouri – Kansas City
University of Missouri – Kansas City offers a five-year curriculum leading to a Masters in Architecture for those starting at the beginning of their education. Or a specialized program for those coming in with some experience and a bachelor’s degree already. The school is located in Kansas City for a collaboration for the first sections, then becomes more flexible in your choices as time goes on. It should be noted that Missouri residents will receive in-state tuition for the Kansas campus.
- Tuition: $9,915 In-State, $24,603 Non-Resident
- Graduate Enrollment: 5,087
7. University of California – Berkeley
At Berkeley, students should enter into the M.Arch Program ready to learn and study vigorously. It is known for being demanding, but it has also won awards and the experience is well-reviewed. While Berkeley California is by no means a small school, the students report that the professors in the architectural department give them plenty of support and that much of the faculty specialized in a field within design or architecture themselves so each student can find a mentor. Consider attending school in sunny California next fall.
- Tuition: $14,253 In-State, $44,007 Non-Resident
- Graduate Enrollment: 11,837
Cornell offers many perks and a reputable education to its students. The school boasts numerous remarkable grads including several Nobel Prize winners. The MArch program has rigorous demands so the world’s best creators emerge but one of the biggest perks students speak of is the global field trips to really experience some of the greatest works of art on the planet and the personal attention from the professors.
- Tuition: $57,222
- Graduate Enrollment: 8,984
Delve deep into all aspects of architecture at Yale‘s graduate program for professionals who already have some education in the field. To graduate students must complete a group project and show understanding and new ideas when it comes to key concepts. Many Yale students live on campus, but it is not a requirement. A dedication to the degree and full-time learning is often key to success with the demanding graduate curriculum though.
- Tuition: $55,500
- Graduate Enrollment: 7,517
Harvard has a STEM-designated M.Arch program that is highly competitive and rewarding. The requirements are high, seven semesters in residence, full-time study, plus a thesis. But graduates can be confident when they move on that they will stand out in the field of architecture in general. Only a few of the many applicants are accepted so if this school is on the top of your list start preparing today and make backup plans to apply again if you can.
- Tuition: $51,920
- Graduate Enrollment: 21,592
11. Massachusets Institute of Technology
Massachusets Institute of Technology, like many quality M.Arch programs the final event is a thesis that will prove that each student has gained the knowledge needed to be successful. The M.Arch class size is only 25 students per class, intentionally. The program is designed to make sure each graduate receives a lot of one on one attention and support, and that the graduates stand out in their fields at the top.
- Tuition: $53,790
- Graduate Enrollment: 6,990
Rice has a demanding M.Arch program but the students describe the environment as supportive and not “cut-throat” it is less about competition and more about collaboration. The school is known as the start of the Space Program, medical advancement, and it is known for being challenging to get into. Rice accepts top students and provides a relaxed learning environment with a strong ethics code so you can excel.
- Tuition: $49,112
- Graduate Enrollment: 3,293
Syracuse requires full-time study and students must enter during the fall semester to start. They offer flexible options as students prove themselves in the Masters of Architectural program, but as it is a demanding degree the professors offer a lot of support and also requirements to start. The campus is described as scenic and the graduates generally have great things to say about their time at the University.
- Tuition: $53,849
- Graduate Enrollment: 7,575
Our Ranking Methodology
This list of the top fifteen schools for your Masters in Architecture was created using real student reviews, information from the school’s website, and other credible sources. If you find that your school is misrepresented please contact us so we can make the corrections to provide the most accurate information to potential students.