Top Architect Schools and Colleges in the U.S.

Learn about top schools for aspiring architects. Explore what makes two of these schools the best in the nation, including their program options, training requirements and national rankings.

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School Overviews

Harvard University and Cornell University are not only highly-ranked, Ivy League schools, but are also at the top of the field when it comes to architecture programs. Universities typically offer architecture degree programs at two levels. The undergraduate (B.Arch.) degree typically takes five years to complete, while the Master of Architecture (M.Arch.) can take 1-5 years, depending on a student's previous experience and training. Cornell offers a highly-ranked B.Arch program, while Harvard offers a few M.Arch options.

Top ArchitectureSchools

1. Cornell University in Ithaca, NY

A private, non-profit Ivy League institution, Cornell University is home to one of the oldest schools of architecture in the U.S. The Department of Architecture's undergraduate program was ranked number one by Architectural Record Magazine in 2010. Each year, the department serves approximately 275 students and employs 24 full-time faculty members in addition to as many as ten visiting faculty. The 5-year program produces 50-60 graduates each year. A course of study leading to the M.Arch. was instituted in 2004, and accepts students possessing a 4-year degree in any field.

2. Harvard University in Cambridge, MA

In 2014, Harvard University was the second highest-ranking national university according to U.S. News and World Report, and the M.Arch program was ranked number one by Architectural Record Magazine. Students enrolled in the Department of Architecture in the Graduate School of Design benefit from a diverse faculty and visiting theorists in the field of architecture from all over the world.

The school offers two levels of the Master of Architecture: M.Arch. I and M.Arch. II. The former is a professional degree for individuals possessing a bachelor's degree in a subject other than architecture, while the latter is for those with a B.Arch. Architecture, Urban Planning, Design and Landscape Architecture departments work cooperatively to provide comprehensive lessons; students are also exposed to additional resources through partnership with MIT.

List of Good Architecture Schools in the U.S.

College/University Distinction Location
Auburn University Architecture students can gain hands-on experience through the university's Rural Studio and Urban Studio programs. Auburn, AL
Columbia University in the City of New York In 2014, Columbia ranked #4 on U.S. News & World Report's list of all national universities. New York, NY
Cornell University Cornell ranked #9 on U.S. News & World Report's 2014 list of best value schools. Ithaca, NY
Harvard University Travel awards and scholarships are available to all architecture degree candidates. Cambridge, MA
University of California, Berkeley UCB is home to the Environmental Design Archives, one of largest collections of architectural plans in the nation. Berkeley, CA
University of Southern California USC ranked #10 on U.S. News & World Report's 2014 list of up-and-coming schools. Los Angeles, CA
University of Texas at Austin Students have access to the Architectural Archive, the Architecture and Planning Library, and the Center for American Architecture and Design. Austin, TX
University of Virginia The university's extern program allows undergraduate and graduate students to gain hands-on experience in many aspects of the architecture field. Charlottesville, VA
Virginia Tech Virginia Tech faculty was been named among the best in the nation by DesignIntelligence in 2012. Blacksburg, VA
Yale University In 2014, U.S. News & World Report ranked Yale #3 among all national universities. New Haven, CT
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Popular Schools

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    Classroom-Based Programs

    • Bachelor
        • Bachelor in Construction Management
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  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
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  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
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Other Schools:

  • School locations:
    • Massachusetts (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Harvard University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Architecture
      • Landscape Architecture
      • Urban and Regional Planning
  • School locations:
    • Pennsylvania (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Pennsylvania include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: First Professional Certificate, Post Master's Certificate, Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Architecture
      • Landscape Architecture
      • Urban and Regional Planning
  • School locations:
    • Rhode Island (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Brown University include:
      • Graduate: First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Architecture
  • School locations:
    • Indiana (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Notre Dame include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Architecture
  • School locations:
    • Florida (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Florida include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Post Master's Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Architecture
      • Landscape Architecture
      • Urban and Regional Planning
  • School locations:
    • New York (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Cornell University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Architecture
      • Architectural History
      • Environmental Design
      • Landscape Architecture
      • Urban and Regional Planning
  • School locations:
    • Massachusetts (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Boston University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: First Professional Certificate, Post Master's Certificate, Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Architecture
      • Urban and Regional Planning

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