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University of cambridge: architecture, doctor of philosophy - phd, full-time, 3 years starts sep 2024.

The PhD in Architecture is a three year research degree offering the opportunity for independent research under the supervision of a departmental member of staff. Unless the student becomes a member of a research group, the research is undertaken entirely by the candidate on their own, with regular supervisions on progress with their supervisor.

The Department welcomes applications from graduates to undertake research towards an PhD degree in most areas or architectural research, but is unable to offer places to candidates for whom no supervisor is available. Applicants are admitted who meet the course requirements and whose research interests match those of an available member of the academic staff.

Please note that the Department does not offer a taught PhD programme, unlike, for example, many North American Universities.

Course Structure & Examination

The PhD in Architecture is a three year programme which commences in October each year. It is also available on a five year part-time basis. Students submit their dissertations at the end of their third full-time year (or part-time equivalent) and will be invited to attend an oral examination up to three months after submitting.

Full-Time, 3 years started Sep 2023

Mphil (res), full-time, 9 months started oct 2022.

The MPhil in Architecture is a nine-month full-time research degree offering the opportunity for independent research under the supervision of a departmental member of staff. Unless the candidate is part of a research group, the research is undertaken entirely by the candidate on their own, with regular supervisions on progress with their supervisor.

The MPhil degree by thesis introduces students to research skills and specialist knowledge. Its main aims are:

to give students with relevant experience at a first-degree level the opportunity to carry out focussed research in the discipline under close supervision; and to give students the opportunity to acquire or develop skills and expertise relevant to their research interests. The Department welcomes applications from postgraduates to undertake research towards an MPhil in most areas, including Urban Studies, History and Theory of Architecture and Urbanism, Digital Media Design and Communication, Design, Technology, Planning and Environment, but is unable to accept candidates for whom no supervisor is available.

This MPhil is not a taught programme. Instead, it admits those applicants who meet the academic admissions criteria and whose research interests match those of an available member of the academic staff who is willing to act as the student's supervisor.

As well as the research and skills training programme offered by the Department of Architecture, candidates have the opportunity to attend numerous training and personal development courses.

The Department is one of the leading institutions in architectural research units in the UK, with over four decades of successful global research. Research typically crosses traditional research boundaries.

Master of Architecture - MArch

Full-time, 21 months starts oct 2024.

The Master of Architecture is a course that is dedicated to a design-based analysis of the relationship between environmental and socio-political considerations, and the wider historical, cultural and economic aspects of architecture and the city. Although based on a rigorous studio programme and wide-ranging series of lectures and seminars, the essence of the course is a research agenda that is developed by individual students and tested through architectural propositions. It expects each student to ground these propositions in current areas of discourse and to detail in full with the ‘real-life’ factors influencing their realisation. The M.Arch delivers intensive teaching in the qualitative and quantitative aspects of architecture and urbanism, in parallel with supervised design development, case study analysis, and discussion of the cultural and technical aspects of the subject. The multi-disciplinary nature of the course and the exchange of expertise that is encouraged between students of a variety of backgrounds, and national origins, makes the M.Arch a unique forum in which to explore some of the most pressing architectural problems of our time.

The programme positively encourages students to develop complex architectural proposals that meet RIBA/ARB criteria for Part II exemption and to acquire knowledge and develop and apply research skills in the following areas:

- role of environmental and socio-political issues in architecture and urban design;

- The wider environmental, historical, socio-cultural and economic context related to architecture and cities;

- The building science and socio-political theories associated with architecture and urban design;

- Modelling and assessment of building and urban design;

- Monitoring and surveying of buildings and urban environments;

- Human behaviour, perception and comfort, and their role in building and urban characteristics;

- Research methods and their application through academic and design methods.

Full-Time, 21 months started Oct 2023

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phd in architecture cambridge

PhD in Architecture

phd in architecture cambridge

The PhD in Architecture is a three year research degree offering the opportunity for independent research under the supervision of a departmental member of staff. Unless the student becomes a member of a research group, the research is undertaken entirely by the candidate on their own, with regular supervisions on progress with their supervisor.

The Department welcomes applications from graduates to undertake research towards an PhD degree in most areas or architectural research, but is unable to offer places to candidates for whom no supervisor is available. Applicants are admitted who meet the course requirements and whose research interests match those of an available member of the academic staff.

Please note that the Department does not offer a taught PhD programme, unlike, for example, many North American Universities.

COURSE STRUCTURE & EXAMINATION

The PhD in Architecture is a three year programme which commences in October each year. It is also available on a five year part-time basis. Students submit their dissertations at the end of their third full-time year (or part-time equivalent) and will be invited to attend an oral examination up to three months after submitting.

The programme involves minimal formal teaching. Students will usually have their supervisors confirmed before they have begun their course in October and will typically meet for 45 minutes on a fortnightly basis during term time. A bespoke programme is evolved by the student in conjunction with their supervisor and will include attendance at the Department’s programme of research seminars and other relevant graduate courses. Attending lectures is optional but students are strongly encouraged to take advantage of lectures offered in the Department, their college and other departments and faculties relevant to their research topics.

As well as the research and skills training programme offered by the Department of Architecture, students have the opportunity to develop their research skills by attending numerous courses, such as those related to the use of bibliographic resources and other databases, and specific computer skills. Informal opportunities to develop research skills also exist through mentoring undergraduate students, contributing to our departmental journal, Scroope and other opportunities presented by fellow students and members of staff.

Students will be provided with feedback via supervisions and their supervisor’s termly reports which are available to them via their self-service pages on CamSIS.

Students will be provided with feedback via review exercises, supervisions and the supervisor’s termly reports.

Submission of a thesis, which is not to exceed 80,000 words. The thesis is examined by two examiners, and includes an oral examination which is usually held at the Faculty.

Footnotes, references and text within tables are to be counted within the word limit, but captions, appendices and bibliographies are excluded. Appendices (of no determined word length) may be permitted subject to the approval of the candidate’s supervisor (in consultation with the Degree Committee). Appendices should be confined to such items as catalogues, original texts, translations of texts, transcriptions of interview, or tables. Permission to include such appendices must be requested well in advance of the submission of the final thesis.

Candidates for the PhD are reviewed formally on an annual basis. In the third term, candidates submit a First Year Report. Candidates’ reports are assessed by two assessors and the candidate is invited to attend an oral assessment.

During their sixth term, candidates are required to give a presentation of their work to the Graduate Director(s), their supervisor and any other appropriate assessor approved by the supervisor. The candidate’s progress is assessed and documented in a short report.

The tenth term review ensures that candidates are on track to submit by the end of their fourth year at the very latest.

Candidates submit a log of their research activity which is assessed at each of the annual reviews described above.

Annual Reviews of Work

Students undertake an annual review of their work throughout their programme which is realised in different ways; for example, the production of a report or undertaking a presentation. The purpose of the reviews is to ensure that students are on track to submit a successful dissertation by the submission deadline. The first review also serves as a registration exercise, for which students have to submit a report of 10,000 words which is orally assessed by two assessors. The purpose of this exercise is to determine whether the student is suited to the demands of PhD research and to address any concerns if there are any.

EXAMINATION

Students submit a dissertation, of not more than 80,000 words (60,000 words for the MSc degree). The dissertation and the general field of knowledge within which it falls is orally examined by two examiners. At least one of the examiners will be external to the University.

HOW TO APPLY FOR THE PHD IN ARCHITECTURE

Course requirements:

Candidates accepted for this course will have a 1st class or a high 2i honours degree and, a Masters degree with 70% overall (or equivalent) in Architecture or a related discipline.

The University requires all applicants to demonstrate competence in the English language at a very high level before they begin their proposed course of study – adherence to this requirement is strict. You must be able to demonstrate that you are able to communicate in English at a level and in an idiom suitable to the subject. You will, therefore, need to provide evidence that you meet the University’s minimum requirements for competence in English. For further information see Graduate Admissions Office.

How to Make an Application for the PhD in Architecture

If you do meet the course requirements, you are recommended to consult the list of our established University Teaching Officers (UTOs) and their research interests (see below for links to information about each of our UTOs). If one of our UTOs has relevant research interests to your own, please email them directly with a short research proposal of about 300 words, an example of your writing and a CV to determine whether they are potentially available to work with you as a supervisor before you make a formal application. See:

– Dr Ronita Bardhan – Data-driven built-environment design, spatial analysis and climate change, Big data for sustainability in the built-environment, design for demand side energy management

– Dr James Campbell – history of building construction, history of library design

– Dr Felipe Hernández – architectural and urban design, participatory design, social urbanism, history and theory

– Dr Ying Jin – city planning, urban design, and urban modelling

– Dr Michael Ramage – designing and building structural masonry spans using traditional techniques and new materials

– Professor Alan Short – passive and hybrid resilient, low-energy design strategies for new-builds and interventions in non-domestic buildings in different climates

– Dr Nicholas Simcik Arese – Social theory and urban planning, international development, property rights, youth, masculinity, migration, Middle East, Mediterranean, Mexico, legal geography, science and technology studies, anthropology of value, ethnography

– Dr Emily So – casualty estimation in earthquake loss modelling, risk in the built environment (Please note that she will not be taking PhD students for Entry 2019).

– Mary Ann Steane – light quality and the design of the visual environment, environmental issues

– Professor Koen Steemers – architectural and urban implications of environmental issues ranging from energy use to human comfort

– Dr Max Sternberg– architecture & philosophy, socio-politics of architecture, urban conflict, architectural history

– Dr Minna Sunikka-Blank – sustainable building policies, thermal retrofit, energy use behaviour, aesthetics of sustainable architecture

You are recommended to only make a formal application via the University’s Graduate Admissions Office, once an established UTO has confirmed that they would be interested to consider a formal application. Please note that an offer of admission to the University is subject to final approval by the University’s Graduate Admissions Office. Do not assume that you will be made an offer on the grounds that your prospective supervisor has suggested you make a formal application – this just represents the first stage of admission administration.

All applications must be made via the Applicant Portal available on the Graduate Admissions Office website. It is important that you read through the information available on the Graduate Admissions Office website before submitting your application. If you are already a current graduate student at Cambridge you will be referred to as a ‘Continuer’ on the Graduate Admissions Office website.

You will need to arrange for the following documents to be submitted with your application:

– Academic Reference(s)

– A Personal Reference will be required if you are applying for the Gates Cambridge Scholarship

– Transcript

– Evidence of Competence in English if English is not your first language

– Sample of Work – this could be a journal publication or a chapter from your undergraduate dissertation

– Research Proposal of 1000 – 1500 words should consist of a topic and a hypothesis, a literature review, a statement on method, and key references

APPLICATION DEADLINES

The PhD in Architecture commences in October each year and applications for the course can be made from the preceding September. All applications must be made via the Applicant Portal available on the Graduate Admissions Office website. It is important that you read through the information available on the Graduate Admissions Office website before submitting your application.

The final deadline for applicants seeking funding is 7 January 2020. Even if you are not seeking funding, we strongly recommend that you submit your application by 7 January, as no applications will be accepted once this competitive and popular programme is full.

If places are still available on programmes beyond this deadline; self-funded applicants will continue to be considered until the final deadline of 15 May 2020. No applications will be considered after this deadline.

COURSES FEE

Information relating to the fee for this course is available from the Graduate Admissions Office.

If you are seeking funding for your course via one of the University’s main funding competitions, there are specific deadlines and eligibility criteria for each competition. Please check the Funding Section of the Graduate Admissions Office website for information and application deadlines.

Applicants classed as ‘Home’ or ‘EU’ for fees purposes and wish to research an AHRC approved research subject are eligible to be considered for an Open-Oxford-Cambridge AHRC DTP studentship. Applicants wishing to be considered for these awards need to check the appropriate box on the application form. Applicants will also need to ensure that they make their application by the funding competition deadline for Home/EU students. Please see the University’s AHRC DTP funding website for more information: https://www.csah.cam.ac.uk/Education/ahrcdtp together with the Open-Oxford-Cambridge AHRC DTP website: https://www.oocdtp.ac.uk/

The Department sometimes offers EPSRC awards for students classified as ‘Home’ or ‘EU’ for fees purposes. These awards are advertised on the Department’s website and other media during the Easter Term (Summer Term) if available. Applicants who have already applied for the PhD degree will automatically be considered for these awards if they meet the criteria for them.

AFTER YOU APPLICATION IS SUBMITTED

When the application reaches the Department, it will be considered by the Department’s Graduate Admissions Team. Applicants may be invited for an interview in Cambridge, or, via Skype if it is not possible to travel to Cambridge. The Faculty’s Degree Committee will then consider the application and make a recommendation to the Graduate Admissions Office as to whether an offer of a place on the course should be made, and if so, with what academic conditions.

Please be aware that this process may take several months. You can check the status of your application at any time via your Applicant Portal.

Full information about making your application, Colleges, fees and funding opportunities is provided on the Graduate Admissions Office website pages.

For further information on graduate admission to the Department of Architecture contact: [email protected]

phd in architecture cambridge

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Doctoral Programs

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Doctoral programs at the Harvard Graduate School of Design are non-studio degree programs that allow in-depth studies of topical areas that span the traditional design disciplines.

To apply to the PhD program in Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning, please visit the Harvard Kenneth C. Griffin Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) admissions page .

Doctoral Programs Harvard University Graduate School of Design 40 Kirkland Street, Room 1-A Cambridge, MA 02138 (617) 495-2337

Margaret Moore de Chicojay Program Administrator [email protected]

Liz Thorstenson Program Coordinator [email protected]

Melissa Hulett Executive Coordinator [email protected]

Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Urban Planning

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Students in architecture, landscape architecture, and urban planning are enrolled in and receive their degree from the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, even though they may work primarily with faculty at the Harvard Graduate School of Design.

This program is ideal for individuals wishing to enter teaching and advanced research careers in the history and theory of architecture, architectural technology, landscape architecture, and urban form from antiquity to the present or the analysis and development of the built environment from a social, economic, technological, and ecological standpoint.

Program cohorts are small, enabling close one-to-one contact with faculty. In this interdisciplinary program, you will interact with a wide range of Harvard departments including History of Art and Architecture, Art Film and Visual Studies, Anthropology, American Studies, and the History of Science as well as the Harvard Kennedy School and the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

Projects former students have worked on include Constructing Classicism: Architectural Theory, Practice, and Expertise in Paris (1670-1720) ; Prehistory of the Digital: Architecture becomes Programming, 1935-1990 ; Private Projects, Public Ambitions: Large-Scale, Middle-Income Housing in New York City ; The Well-Fed Subject: Modern Architecture in the Quantitative State, India (1943-1984) ; Britain’s Imperial Prospects and the Aesthetic Origins of the Scenographia Americana .

Most graduates have gone on to secure faculty positions at schools such as Columbia, Bard, Yale, MIT, Northeastern, UC Berkeley, Emory, and University of North Carolina and abroad at the University of Toronto, McGill University, The Courtauld, University of Basel, and Sweden Royal Institute of Technology.

Additional information on the graduate program is available from the PhD Program in Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning and requirements for the degree are detailed in Policies . 

Admissions Requirements

Please review admissions requirements and other information before applying. You can find degree program-specific admissions requirements below and access additional guidance on applying from the PhD Program in Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning .

Academic Background

A professional degree in architecture, landscape architecture, or urban planning is recommended but not required. Applicants are required to indicate a proposed major subject of study that is congruent with the interests and expertise of at least one member of the PhD standing committee.

Writing Sample

A writing sample is required as part of the application and can be a paper written for a course, journal article, and/or thesis excerpt and no longer than 20 pages. The writing sample should focus on a subject related to architecture, landscape architecture, or urban planning.

Please note: Unless a specific justification is provided by the applicant, design portfolios are not typically considered as part of the application.

Standardized Tests

GRE: Not Accepted

Theses & Dissertations

Theses & Dissertations for Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Urban Planning

See list of Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Urban Planning faculty

APPLICATION DEADLINE

Questions about the program.

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Architecture

Architecture

77 Massachusetts Avenue Building 7-337 Cambridge MA, 02139

617-715-4490 [email protected]

Website: Architecture

Application Opens: September 15

Deadline: January 7 at 11:59 PM Eastern Time

Fee: $75.00

Terms of Enrollment

Fall Term (September)

Standardized Tests

Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

  • The GRE is not required for any Architecture program

International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

  • Minimum score required: 7
  • Electronic scores send to: MIT Graduate Admissions

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)

  • Minimum score required: 110 (iBT) 637 (PBT) for PhD program in History, Theory, and Criticism
  • Minimum score required: 100 (iBT) 600 (PBT) for all other programs
  • Institute code: 3514
  • Department code: 12

The IELTS exam is preferred over the TOEFL. Waivers are not offered.

Areas of Research

  • Architectural Design
  • Architecture and Urbanism
  • Art, Culture and Technology
  • Building Technology
  • Design and Computation
  • History, Theory, and Criticism of Architecture
  • History, Theory, and Criticism of Art
  • Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture

Financial Support

The Department wants to make it possible for all of our students to graduate with a debt no larger than they can reasonably expect to repay while working in their profession.

Financial aid from the Department is in the form of direct tuition awards and Departmental employment. Financial aid awards to Master’s degree students are in the form of a partial tuition award. Master’s degree students are also eligible to compete for work opportunities in the form of Teaching or Research Assistantships or hourly positions.

Application Requirements

  • Online application
  • Statement of objectives
  • Transcripts
  • English proficiency exam scores
  • Portfolio or Writing Sample, as appropriate

Required for MArch, SMBT, and PhD in Building Technology or History, Theory, and Criticism applicants:

Special Instructions

Applicants should not send any supplemental material with their applications.

A scanned PDF of an original transcript (or English translation) from each university should be uploaded in the application. Only those applicants who are accepted for admission will be required to send a hard copy of an official, sealed transcript (with English translation) from each school attended. Any discrepancy between the scanned transcripts and official transcripts may result in a rejection or withdrawal of our admission offer.

Some degree programs require a portfolio of design work and/or writing sample (maximum 30 pages). Applicants should follow instructions detailed on the Architecture website under the degree program of their interest.

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phd in architecture cambridge

As a Berkeley graduate student, you’re part of a diverse community of change-makers known worldwide for innovation and academic excellence. At the College of Environmental Design, we’re committed to launching our students to be agents of environmental and social change, poised to make a tangible impact on our world. We offer six professional degrees and five academic graduate degrees, as well as opportunities for earning concurrent degrees within the college and with other Berkeley departments. Whichever you choose,  your CED degree will set you the path to succeed in your chosen field.  

Professional Degrees 

Our top-ranked, rigorous MArch prepares you for the practice of architecture in an environment that fosters design excellence and encourages multidisciplinary collaboration and experimentation. The nationally accredited professional program is committed to addressing the most pressing issues of our time, including the climate crisis, housing affordability, and the integration of technology into both research and practice. As an MArch student, you’ll be part of an international cohort of motivated and talented design students from diverse backgrounds and work with faculty who are leaders in their fields.

Master of City Planning (MCP)

Berkeley’s top-tier MCP is a two-year nationally accredited STEM program that empowers you to successfully practice planning in a variety of urban, metropolitan, and regional settings. As an MCP student, you’ll develop analytical, research, and communication skills, as well as expertise in various fields and subfields of city and regional planning. Berkeley’s MCP is distinguished by its focus on the human impacts of planning decisions, with particular attention to equity, diversity, and social justice.

Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA)

Berkeley’s MLA program is known for centering ecological integrity and social equity. It offers accredited degrees in landscape architecture and environmental planning, which focuses on land use and the management of natural resources. You’ll study with faculty who have expertise in design, planning, urbanism, history, sustainability, hydrology, ecology, geographic information science, landscape modeling, and social practices. Your MLA will prepare you to serve as a leader in the field, building thriving communities in a world of rapid political, economic, and environmental change.

Master of Urban Design (MUD)

Berkeley’s MUD, the only degree program of its kind in California,  is a one-year interdisciplinary program of advanced study for architects, landscape architects, and planners who already hold professional degrees. As a MUD student, you’ll innovate design strategies for sites at the urban, suburban, and territorial scales and develop a practice supported by research and analysis that is grounded in economic, political, and social contexts.

Abbey Master of Real Estate Development + Design (MRED+D)

Integrating design with the fundamentals of real estate markets, the one-year Abbey MRED+D prepares you to build sustainable, equitable, and prosperous cities. The curriculum focuses on finance, urban economics, property and land use law, and project feasibility analysis, as well as  excellence in urban design, planning, and sustainability. As an MRED+D student, you’ll discover how  design thinking is foundational to producing the most valued — and valuable — real estate projects.

Master of Design (MDes)

A three-semester professional graduate program jointly offered with the College of Engineering, the MDes prepares you to be a thought leader in the area of emerging technologies like artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and the internet of things. You’ll develop core skills in design process, prototyping, and communication, as well as a critical lens on technology and design. You’ll leave the program as an engaged and responsive designer with an informed awareness of people, contextual needs, and societal impacts.

Academic Degrees

Master of science in architecture (ms).

Our MS in Architecture is an academic, nonprofessional degree program that offers you the opportunity to engage in advanced research in the ever-broadening and increasingly complex subfields within architecture. Two tracks are offered:  Building Science, Technology and Sustainability , focused on how the environmental conditions and processes of buildings affect occupants, and History, T h eory and Society , which situates a history of the built environment in broad social, political, and cultural frameworks.

If you already have a professional degree in architecture and wish to continue to explore current design issues in a stimulating, rigorous, and experimental studio setting, our one-year MAAD post-professional program is for you. A year-long studio is at the core of this non-accredited program, and it’s integrated with seminars and lectures in design theory, history, digital applications, and building technology.

PhD in Architecture

Berkeley’s PhD program in architecture is interdisciplinary in outlook, reaching into the various disciplines related to architecture and incorporating substantial knowledge from outside fields. You have the option to choose between two areas of focus: Two tracks are offered:  Building Science, Technology and Sustainability , focused on how environmental conditions and processes of buildings affect occupants,  and  History, Theory and Society , which situates a history of the built environment in broad social, political, and cultural frameworks.

PhD in City & Regional Planning

The PhD in City & Regional Planning provides training in urban and planning theory and the practice of planning. You’ll work with faculty who have expertise in community and economic development, transportation planning, urban design, international development, environmental planning, and global urbanism. 

PhD in Landscape Architecture & Environmental Planning

Berkeley’s PhD in Landscape Architecture & Environmental Planning focuses on the theories and methods that underlie the field and the processes of planning and design as they relate to the solution of problems in the natural and urban environments. 

Concurrent Master of Architecture/Master of City Planning

Concurrent Master of Architecture/Master of Landscape Architecture

Concurrent Master of Architecture/ Master of Science in Engineering

Concurrent Master of City Planning/Master of City Landscape Architecture

Concurrent Master of City Planning/Master of Public Health

Concurrent Master of City Planning/Master of Science in Transportation Engineering

Concurrent Master of City Planning/Juris Doctor (Law)

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The Department of Architecture at the University of Cambridge is an exciting and stimulating place to study.  

The Department is located in the Faculty of Architecture and History of Art and we share the same Library and buildings. The Department of Architecture is over 100 years old .

Regularly lauded as one of the leading architecture schools in the world, our carefully regulated student numbers ensure that each student’s progress can be closely cultivated by world-renowned researchers and ground-breaking practitioners and we are proud to have come top in the Research Excellence Framework for research quality 2022. Our supportive community atmosphere gives students the opportunity to take risks in pushing the boundaries of the field and to extend their own abilities in exciting new directions.

We offer an exciting portfolio of degree programmes which mix design with academic rigour.  Students are expected to master the technical subjects but are also expected to acquire a deep understanding of the theoretical, historical and cultural context of architecture. We believe that academic research is a central part of the architect’s training and has an integral part to play in the design process: creating structures that are not just aesthetically pleasing and technically sound, but which also serve as agents of development and integration within communities.

Our graduates are recruited by world class organisations. We continue to develop strong connections through research programmes, consultancy and student placement and project schemes.  We offer our students an excellent programme of training, transferable skills and careers advice. In so doing, the courses equip students with the skills, knowledge and experience needed for an architectural related career at the very highest level. We are proud to be holders of the Athena Swan Bronze Award and believe passionately in striving for Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity in everything we do. 

Our students leave with a deep awareness of the role played by the built environment in bringing about social, political, cultural and technological change, and our alumni have gone on to blaze trails across the landscape of design and urban planning, as well as a wide range of other careers.

Our current Head of Department is Professor Flora Samuel . 

The students have produced the journal Scroope since 1989.

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Student spotlight: Victory Yinka-Banjo

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This interview is part of a series from the MIT Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science featuring students answering questions about themselves and life at the Institute. Today’s interviewee, Victory Yinka-Banjo, is a junior majoring in MIT Course 6-7: Computer Science and Molecular Biology. Yinka-Banjo keeps a packed schedule: She is a member of the Office of Minority Education (OME) Laureates and Leaders program ; a 2024 fellow in the public service-oriented BCAP program ; has previously served as secretary of the African Students’ Association, and is now undergraduate president of the MIT Biotech Group ; additionally, she is a SuperUROP Scholar ; a member of the Ginkgo Bioworks' Cultivate Fellowship (a program that supports students interested in synthetic biology/biotech); and an ambassador for Leadership Brainery , which equips juniors/leaders of color with the resources needed to prepare for graduate school. She recently found time to share a peek into her MIT experience.

Q: What’s your favorite building or room within MIT?

A: It has to be the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard on Ames Street in Kendall Square, where I do my SuperUROP research in Caroline Uhler's lab . Outside of classes, you're 90 percent likely to find me on the newest mezzanine floor (between the 11th and 12th floor), in one of the UROP [Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program] rooms I share with two other undergrads in the lab. We have standing desks, an amazing coffee/hot chocolate machine, external personal monitors, comfortable sofas — everything, really! Not only is it my favorite building, it is also my favorite study spot on campus. In fact, I am there so often that when friends recently planned a birthday surprise for me, they told me they were considering having it at the Broad, since they could count on me being there. 

I think the most beautiful thing about this building, apart from the beautiful view of Cambridge we get from being on one of the highest floors, is that when I was applying to MIT from high school, I had fantasized working at the Broad because of the groundbreaking research. To think that it is now a reality makes me appreciate every minute I spend on my floor, whether I am doing actual research or some last-minute studying for a midterm. 

Q: Tell me about one interest or hobby you’ve discovered since you came to MIT.

A: I have become pretty involved in the performing arts since I got to MIT! I have acted in two plays run by the Black Theater Guild, which was revived during my freshman year by one of my friends. I played a supporting role in the first play called “Nkrumah’s Last Day,” which was about Ghana at a time of governance under Kwame Nkrumah, its first president. In the second play, a ghost story/comedy called “Shooting the Sheriff,” I played one of the lead roles. Both caused me to step way out of my comfort zone and I loved the experiences because of that. I also got to act with some of my close friends who were first-time stage actors as well, so that made it even more fun. 

Outside of acting, I also do spoken word/poetry. I have performed at events like the African Students Association Cultural Night, MIT Africa Innovate Conference, and Black Women’s Alliance Banquet. I try to use my pieces to share my experiences both within and beyond MIT, offering the perspective of an international Nigerian student. My favorite piece was called “Code Switch,” and I used concepts from [computer science] and biology (especially genetic code switching), to draw parallels with linguistic code-switching, and emphasize the beauty and originality of authenticity. This semester, I’m also a part of MIT Monologues and will be performing a piece called “Inheritance,” about the beauty of self-love found in affection transferred from a mother. 

Q: Are you a re-reader or a re-watcher — and if so, what are your comfort books, shows, or movies?

A: I don’t watch too many movies, although I used to be obsessed with all parts of “High School Musical;” and the only book I’ve ever reread is “Americanah.” I would actually say I am a re-podcaster! My go-to comfort-podcast is this episode, “A Breakthrough Unfolds”, by Google DeepMind . It makes me a little emotional every time I listen. It is such an exemplification of the power of science and its ability to break boundaries that humans formerly thought impossible. As a computer science and biology major, I am particularly interested in these two disciplines’ applications to relevant problems, like the protein-folding problem discussed in the episode, which DeepMind's solution for has caused massive advances in the biotech industry. It makes me so hopeful for the future of biology, and the ways in which computation can advance human health and precision medicine.

Q: Who’s your favorite artist?

A: When I think of the word 'artist,' I think of music artists first. There are so many who I love; my favorites also evolve over time. I’m Christian, so I listen to a lot of gospel music. I’m also Nigerian so I listen to a lot of Afrobeats. Since last summer, I’ve been obsessed with Limoblaze , who fuses both gospel and Afrobeats music! KB, a super talented gospel rapper , is also somewhat tied in ranking with Limo for me right now. His songs are probably ~50 percent of my workout playlist.

Q: It’s time to get on the shuttle to the first Mars colony, and you can only bring one personal item. What are you going to bring?

A: Oooh, this is a tough one, but it has to be my Brass Rat. Ever since I got mine at the end of sophomore year, it’s been nearly impossible for me to take it off. If there’s ever a time I forget to wear it, my finger feels off for the entire day. 

Q: Tell me about one conversation that changed the trajectory of your life.

A: Two specific career-defining moments come to mind. They aren’t quite conversations, but they are talks/lectures that I was deeply inspired by. The first was towards the end of high school when I watched this TEDx Talk about storing data in DNA . At the time, I was getting ready to apply to colleges and I knew that biology and computer science were two things I really liked, but I didn’t really understand the possibilities that could be birthed from them coming together as an interdisciplinary field. The TEDx talk was my eureka moment for computational biology. 

The second moment was in my junior fall during an introductory lecture to “Lab Fundamentals for Bioengineering,” by Professor Jacquin Niles. I started the school year with a lot of confusion about my future post-grad, and the relevance of my planned career path to the communities that I care about. Basically, I was unsure about how computational biology fit into the context of Nigeria’s problems, especially because my interest in the field is oriented towards molecular biology/medicine, not necessarily public health. 

In the U.S., most research focuses on diseases like cancer and Alzheimer’s, which, while important, are not the most pressing health conditions in tropical regions like Nigeria. When Professor Niles told us about his lab’s dedication to malaria research from a molecular biology standpoint, it was yet another eureka moment. Like, Yes! Computation and molecular biology can indeed mitigate diseases that affect developing nations like Nigeria — diseases that are understudied, and whose research is underfunded. 

Since his talk, I found a renewed sense of purpose. Grad school isn’t the end goal. Using my skills to shine a light on the issues affecting my people that deserve far more attention is the goal. I’m so excited to see how I will use computational biology to possibly create the next cure to a commonly neglected tropical disease, or accelerate the diagnosis of one. Whatever it may be, I know that it will be close to home, eventually.

Q: What are you looking forward to about life after graduation? What do you think you’ll miss about MIT?

A: Thinking about graduating actually makes me sad. I’ve grown to love MIT. The biggest thing I’ll miss, though, is Independent Activities Period (IAP). It is such a unique part of the MIT experience. I’ve done a web development class/competition, research, a data science challenge, a molecular bio crash course, and a deep learning crash course over the past three IAPs. It is such an amazing time to try something low stakes, forget about grades, explore Boston, build a robot, travel abroad, do less, go slower, really rejuvenate before the spring, and embrace MIT’s motto of “mind and hand” by just being creative and explorative. It is such an exemplification of what it means to go here, and I can’t imagine it being the same anywhere else. 

That said, I look forward to graduating so I can do more research. My hours spent at the Broad thinking about my UROP are always the quickest hours of my week. I love the rabbit holes my research allows me to explore, and I hope that I find those over and over again as I apply and hopefully get into PhD programs. I look forward to exploring a new city after I graduate, too. I wouldn’t mind staying in Cambridge/Boston. I love it here. But I would welcome a chance to be somewhere new and embrace all the people and unique experiences it has to offer.

I also hope to work on more passion projects post-grad. I feel like I have this idea in my head that once I graduate from MIT, I’ll have so much more time on my hands (we’ll see how that goes). I hope that I can use that time to work on education projects in Nigeria, which is a space I care a lot about. Generally, I want to make service more integrated in my lifestyle. I hope that post-graduation, I can prioritize doing that even more: making it a norm to lift others as I continue to climb.

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  10. Doctoral Programs

    To apply to the PhD program in Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning, please visit the Harvard Kenneth C. Griffin ... Doctoral Programs Harvard University Graduate School of Design 40 Kirkland Street, Room 1-A Cambridge, MA 02138 (617) 495-2337. Margaret Moore de Chicojay Program Administrator [email protected]. Liz ...

  11. Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Urban Planning

    Students may study for a PhD degree in architecture, landscape architecture, or urban planning. ... 48 Quincy Street, Cambridge, MA 02138, 617-495-5453.) Academic Residence. Two years of full-time study while registered in the Harvard Kenneth C. Griffin Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (Harvard Griffin GSAS) are required.

  12. Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Urban Planning

    You can find degree program-specific admissions requirements below and access additional guidance on applying from the PhD Program in Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning. Academic Background. A professional degree in architecture, landscape architecture, or urban planning is recommended but not required.

  13. Architecture

    77 Massachusetts Avenue Building 7-337 Cambridge MA, 02139. 617-715-4490 [email protected]. Website: Architecture. Apply here. Application Opens: September 15. Deadline:

  14. Graduate Programs

    Graduate Programs. As a Berkeley graduate student, you're part of a diverse community of change-makers known worldwide for innovation and academic excellence. At the College of Environmental Design, we're committed to launching our students to be agents of environmental and social change, poised to make a tangible impact on our world.

  15. About the Department

    The Department of Architecture at the University of Cambridge is an exciting and stimulating place to study. The Department is located in the Faculty of Architecture and History of Art and we share the same Library and buildings. The Department of Architecture is over 100 years old.. Regularly lauded as one of the leading architecture schools in the world, our carefully regulated student ...

  16. Student spotlight: Victory Yinka-Banjo

    Today's interviewee, Victory Yinka-Banjo, is a junior majoring in MIT Course 6-7: Computer Science and Molecular Biology. Yinka-Banjo keeps a packed schedule: She is a member of the Office of Minority Education (OME) Laureates and Leaders program; a 2024 fellow in the public service-oriented BCAP program; has previously served as secretary of ...