Throughout the studio-centric architecture degree program, our graduate students become top designers, who share a deep understanding of architecture. We provide them with the knowledge and abilities necessary to investigate their ideas and transform their architectural visions into built reality. We strongly believe in our students’ potential to shape the future of our environment as critical leaders in their field.

The undergraduate programs are building on the foundation of fundamental design, ethical awareness, and liberal arts. We offer intermediate and advanced design studios that help the students to unfold their creative potential. Our students enter the profession well prepared, as we educate them to become critical thinkers and visionary designers with skills and experiences to carry them into their architectural careers.



Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch)

Fundamental design, ethical awareness, and liberal arts prepare students for the upper division courses in which students engage with the profession within and beyond the classroom through a rich array of field trips, firm visits, networking events, and internship opportunities. Our rigorous design studio curriculum prepares students to contribute meaningfully to the built environment. Students gain critical thinking and research skills, in addition to design and technical skills, to be prepared for the evolving profession.

The Bachelor of Architecture (B. Arch) program, accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB), offers a path to architectural licensure accepted in all US states. The program adheres to the learning outcomes and unit requirements mandated by NAAB.

There are two pathways for the B. Arch program: B. Arch and B. Arch IPAL (Integrated Path to Architectural Licensure). In Northern California, Academy of Art University is the only Architecture School that offers the IPAL program.

The B. Arch IPAL (Integrated Path to Architectural Licensure) is the shortest path to architectural licensure in the states that accept the IPAL program. Students simultaneously complete requirements for Education, Experience, and Examination by accruing work experience in architecture and taking licensing exams while taking classes. Students are supported in applying for paid internships through coursework and mentorship.

Master of Architecture (M.Arch)

The NAAB accredited Master of Architecture (M.Arch) program prepares you to provide meaningful contributions to our built environment through the practice of architecture and urban design. There are two track options for this degree: M.Arch Track I: 63 units, and M.Arch Track II: 87 units. Degree track placement is determined on an individual basis, based on a portfolio review and transcript evaluation.

Bachelor of Arts in Architectural Design

The Bachelor of Arts in Architecture (BA) program provides a robust foundation in architectural design with skills transferrable to related disciplines. The ability to define a problem, work through design iterations, and refine evaluative criteria are some of the transferrable skills that will prepare students for multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary design practices within and beyond architecture.

With an emphasis on building strong portfolios, students have the option to pursue graduate school or employment in architecture or related fields upon graduation. Curricular flexibility enables students to select courses that best prepares them for their individualized goals. In the State of California, the BA degree offers a modified path to architectural licensure.

Master of Arts in Advanced Architectural Design (MA-ARH)

There are two track options for the Master of Arts in Advanced Architectural Design (MA-ARH) degree. Graduates from NAAB-accredited 5-year B.ARCH program or equivalent, and graduates from a 4- or 5-year non-NAAB-accredited BA program in architecture, environmental design, interior design, landscape architecture, urban design and engineering are eligible for MA-ARH Track I (36 units). Final placement will be determined after transcripts and portfolio review. Applicants who graduate with an unrelated undergraduate degree will be placed in MA-ARH Track II (60 units).

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Liberal Arts

The Liberal Arts Program provides students with a holistic education covering the arts, humanities, and sciences. Courses highlight connections between the subject of study and the major fields of art and design, providing context to the larger world of art and design.

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The Foundations curriculum heightens perception and understanding of visual structure through the study of drawing, modeling of form, value structure, perspective principles, color, and design theory.

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