BA/BS in Architecture Curriculum

The undergraduate program is structured around a four-year sequence of required, thematic design studios, from freshman drawing classes to senior explorations of architectural intervention in the city.

Emphasis is placed on the creative act of design through hands-on creation of drawings, artifacts and models. We strongly encourage students to engage in a wide array of media in evoking imaginative ideas and inventive possibilities. As such, the School's facilities support all forms of fabrication, from concrete and plaster casting to welding and metalworking to woodworking to digital milling.

Design studio is enriched by the association of required and elective lectures and seminars in Humanities and Tectonics. These classes introduce, analyze and discuss the complexities of both the cultural and technological influences upon the making of architecture. The program pursues an understanding of architecture as an embodiment of human values while promoting levels of knowledge appropriate for the construction of plausible works. Ethical responses to the contemporary dilemmas of enviromental changes are a paramount concern in the teaching of all levels.

Admission to the undergraduate program follows the normal PSU admissions process, with no special Architecture School requirements for freshman or sophomore entry.

Admission to the Professional Track at the junior level is selective and contingent upon success in the second year Portfolio Review that evaluates a portfolio of design work combined with academic accomplishments.

Undergraduate Curriculum*: B.A. or B.S. with a Major in Architecture

Year 1
Arch 100 Introduction to Architecture (4)
Arch 101 Introduction to Environmental Design (4)
Arch 120, 121 Visual Communication 1, 2 (4, 4)
B.A. or B.S. Requirements (14)
General Education/Freshman Inquiry (15)

Year 2
Arch 230, 231, 232 Architecture & Cultural History 1, 2, 3 (4, 4, 4)
Arch 280, 281 Design Fundamentals Studio 1, 2 (6, 6)
B.A. or B.S. Requirements (8)
General Education/Sophomore Inquiry (12)

Portfolio Review for entry to Professional Track

Year 3
Arch 360, 361, 362 Building Tectonics 1, 2, 3 (4, 4, 4)
Arch 380 Architectural Design Studio 1 (6)
Arch 381 or 382 or (384+385) Architectural Design Studio 2, 3 (6, 6)
B.A. or B.S. Requirements (4)
General Education/Upper Division Clusters (12)

Year 4
Arch 46x Building Tectonics elective (4)
Arch 480, 481 Architectural Design Studio 4, 5 (6, 6)
Arch 3xx/4xx Architectural upper division electives (must include 4 credits in the Humanities knowledge area [classes numbered Arch 43x])** (8)
B.A. or B.S. Requirements (15)
General Education/Senior Capstone (6)

Total: 180 Quarter Credits Required


Math 111 and 112 are recommended as preparation for later Building Tectonics classes. One year of physics is recommended but not required. Calculus is recommended for students intending to pursue graduate study in architecture.

 * See PSU Bulletin for all course prerequisites, and Anticipated Course Offerings chart to learn when classes are expected to be offered in the current year.

** Beginning Fall 2013, ARCH 367U will no longer be open to Architecture majors and will not count toward upper-division architecture elective credit (unless taken previously).