Top Architect Schools and Colleges in the U.S.

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

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Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Architectural History
  • Architectural Technology
  • Environmental Design
  • Interior Architecture
  • Landscape Architecture
  • Urban and Regional Planning

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.

1. Cornell University in Ithaca, NY

School Highlight: This university's architecture department offers three undergraduate degrees and 13 graduate degrees.

Each year, the department serves approximately 800 students and employs 56 faculty members. The 5-year program produces 50-60 graduates each year. Of the three undergraduate degrees offered, there is the Bachelor of Architecture and the Bachelor of Science in urban and regional studies. Of the multitude of graduate degrees, there are the Ph.D. programs in city and regional planning and history of architecture and urban development. Master degrees are available in Architecture, Regional Planning, and Landscape Architecture. Students enrolled in the Architecture Bachelor program eventually spend a semester in Rome.

2. Harvard University in Cambridge, MA

School Highlight: 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 architecture 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.

Top Architecture Schools

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
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 2015, U.S. News & World Report ranked Yale #3 among all national universities New Haven, CT
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