Individuals who have completed a four-year Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree in any field (architecture or other) are eligible for admission to the first term of the professional degree program. Preference for admission is given to applicants who have completed a balanced undergraduate education that includes study in the arts, sciences, and humanities. Four college-level, semester-long courses are specifically required as prerequisites for admission to the M.Arch-1 program: one semester of calculus; one semester of physics (algebra-based, covering mechanics and thermodynamics); and two semesters of history of architecture(together covering Renaissance through Modern periods at minimum). Applicants must achieve a grade of B- or better in each of these courses. Applicants who have scored a 4 or 5 on AP Calculus or AP Physics exams will be considered to have met these prerequisites only if their undergraduate transcript acknowledges the results by awarding institutional credit.
Preparation in the visual arts is desirable and may include drawing, sculpture, and/or graphics. Courses in the humanities, philosophy, literature, and economics are also recommended but are not required.
The Graduate School of Design offers a Pre-Core Workshop to incoming students, which is required for all entering Master in Architecture students without an undergraduate degree in architecture. The workshop may also be required or recommended for students whose portfolios demonstrate a need for more depth of knowledge with software used to design and represent architectural projects (for example, Rhino, V-Ray, AutoCAD, Illustrator, Photoshop). The workshop allows students to set up their computers, their GSD network accounts, and to familiarize themselves with the GSD’s Digital facilities prior to the start of classes. Most importantly, the workshop allows incoming students to gain a basic knowledge of the workflows and digital techniques used in the context of studios: 3D software basics, rendering basics, data-transfer from 3D software, output and model building techniques using CAD/CAM facilities. No academic credit is given for the workshop. Please refer to last year's syllabus for additional details.
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Collect Three Letters of Recommendation
Have your GRE Scores Sent to the GSD
Have your TOEFL Scores Sent to the GSD
（International Students Only）
Edit your Resume
Write Your Essay
Prepare Your Portfolio
Recommended File Set-up
Pay the Application Fee
Apply for Financial Aid
Together with visiting design critics and theorists from around the world, architecture faculty and students explore a range of design investigations, expand knowledge, and confront the challenges of the contemporary built environment. Collaboration thrives in Gund Hall’s distinctive trays, five continuous tiers of open studio space.
The Department’s philosophy of design excellence integrates the imaginative and skillful manipulation of form, as well as the ability to draw inspiration from a broad body of knowledge. The architecture curriculum includes design studio, theory, visual studies, history, technology, and professional practice, with design as the central focus of instruction.
Gund Hall’s studio trays form both the physical and pedagogical core of the GSD experience, drawing together students and faculty from across the departments of architecture, landscape architecture, and urban planning and design. The creative, collaborative atmosphere of the trays is supplemented by Gund Hall’s advanced information infrastructure, media-enriched presentation spaces, vast library resources, and open access to fabrication technologies, enabling architecture students to develop, discuss, exchange, and materialize ideas through a comprehensive range of platforms and media. The student experience is further enriched by the School’s renowned lecture and public program series, exhibitions, and publications, as well as the resources available across Harvard University and the nearby Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Students in the Department of Architecture are integrated into an active network of internationally recognized designers, dedicated to addressing the changing needs of the modern world.
As new ways of thinking emerge in the profession of architecture, the field grows increasingly complex and requires new techniques of inquiry and design. For generations, the GSD has educated committed individuals who have assumed leadership roles in shaping the built environment. Today’s graduates in architecture continue this tradition by pioneering new design approaches to the challenges posed by contemporary society.