Academics

Master of Architecture

The UNLV School of Architecture Master of Architecture Degree Program is a NAAB accredited program that offers prospective students two paths of study to the Master of Architecture (M Arch) professional degree; a two year course of study for students possessing a pre-professional undergraduate degree in architecture and a three to four year course of study for students whose academic background is outside of architecture. Master of Architecture Program studies emphasize the opportunities that the University and Southern Nevada settings have to inform and enrich the study of architecture and prepare students for meaningful careers and lifelong success.  Whether through research based interdisciplinary study involving academic units across the UNLV campus or design inquiry exploring the unique qualities of Las Vegas, students that enroll in the program will be rewarded with an educational experience that is as unique and dynamic as this place.

Centering on critical opportunities for architecture to serve society, the M Arch degree program is organized into three distinct courses of study or Concentrations:  Building Systems and Sustainability, Hospitality and Entertainment Design, and Education Facilities Research & Design.  Each Concentration is composed of an interdisciplinary curriculum involving academic programs across the University of Nevada Las Vegas as well as the participation of internationally significant practitioners and researchers. The M Arch degree program is thematically structured to emphasize comprehensive building design during the first year of study and Concentration-focused research and design during the second year of study.  Concurrent to both years, students enroll in Concentration-related electives that inform and give breadth to students’ individual efforts in the final year of the program.

The School of Architecture is fortunate to offer students a range of research labs and centers that enhance the graduate experience.  These include the Downtown Design Center located in downtown Las Vegas, the SimLab emphasizing modes of fabrication, LIME emphasizing virtual realizations, the NEET Lab emphasizing renewable resources, and the Design Build program which in its inaugural year competed in the 2013 Solar Decathlon.

Learning Objectives

The Master of Architecture degree is accredited by NAAB, the National Architecture Accrediting Board.  For accreditation, programs must demonstrate that each student possesses the knowledge and skills defined by the following learning outcomes:

Critical Thinking and Representation

Architects must have the ability to build abstract relationships and understand the impact of ideas based on research and analysis of multiple theoretical, social, political, economic, cultural and environmental contexts.  This ability includes facility with the wider range of media used to think about architecture, including writing, investigative skills, speaking, drawing and model making. 

Integrated Building Practices, Technical Skills and Knowledge

Architects are called upon to comprehend the technical aspects of design, systems, and materials, and be able to apply that comprehension to their services.  Additionally, they must appreciate their role in the implementation of design decisions, and the impact such decisions on the environment.

Leadership and Practice

Architects need to manage, advocate, and act legally, ethically and critically for the good of the client, society and the public.  This includes collaboration, business, and leadership skills.

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