What People Say About the Best Architecture Schools

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Best Architecture Schools to Get in and Make Buildings in the Future!

Before you submit your application to the best architecture schools, you need to read what people over at College Confidential have to say about some of these schools to give you a better idea about which programs you should focus on.

If you have a fascination for how buildings are constructed and designed, then a career as an architect is a strong possibility that you should explore.

To increase the odds of becoming a professional architect, you must study at the best architecture schools and programs in college. Doing this should enable you to develop a strong foundation in design and give you a distinct advantage once you graduate and look for a job as an architect.

However, you must first know the best architecture schools that you must apply to soon. Each school have their pros and cons, but if you have done your research, you will be able to identify some of the best architecture schools that fits your need.

Below is a list of the best architecture schools. Click on each of the schools to read what people have to say about them.

Disclaimer: PortPrep do not necessary endorse the opinions expressed below. These belong to the users from College Confidential. To see where the opinions were lifted from, click on the link of each quote.

Cornell University
University of Cincinnati
Rice University
Columbia University
University of Notre Dame
Syracuse University

Cornell University

“I highly recommend taking a higher level math course unless you are struggling to the point that you can barely pass. The reason is that Cornell wants their students to be able to think at a higher level, and I feel like regular math classes aren’t challenging enough. Besides, Cornell requires that you take a math subject tests over topics like trigonometry and pre-cal. I don’t think regular math classes cover all those topics.

“I got into Cornell’s architecture program last week, and right now I’m enrolled in AP Calc AB.” — click here for the source

Regarding their interview application process: “She brought her portfolio-in-progress, and the professor looked it over and asked a few questions. They talked about my daughter’s interests and a mentorship she’d been doing with a local architect. All in all, it wasn’t stressful at all. My daughter saw it as a great opportunity for a good conversation about architecture and design. She had some questions, too, about Cornell’s program, and she was able to ask them, too. If you can get hold of the great newsletter/periodical Cornell’s AAP department puts out, you might learn more about happenings in the department — visiting architects, for example, or overseas project. Just ask the department secretary. We found everyone there to be really helpful, btw.” — click here for the source

“I am currently a first year architecture student and love the program so far. One of the things I love most about the program is the great student body it has. With its reputation, Cornell architecture is able to attract some of the most talented and interesting students out there. Because of this, a Cornell architecture student is able to learn a lot not only from their professors, but also their classmates.” — click here for the source

Click here for more information about the Architecture Program at Cornell University!

University of Cincinnati

User details overview of the DAAP at U of C: “b. UC’s second gem, and not necessarily second to their conservatory, is their School of Design, Art, Architecture, and Planning (DAAP). This school has some amazing rankings. Their school of architecture is ranked by Design Intelligence Magazine as one of the top three programs in the US. Their Interior Design program was ranked number one in the country for the past seven years. Recently, there were new rankings instituted by Design Intelligence for Industrial Design and UC was ranked number 2 in the US ahead of such notable and expensive schools as Carnegie Mellon, RISD, Pratt etc.

“UC also has one of the best undergraduate programs in digital design as well. Should you be interested in this area, it is well worth checking out.” — click here for the source

“If you are interested in design or architecture, I would definitely recommend checking out the college of Design, Architecture, Art & Planning at the University of Cincinnati. I am a graphic design graduate and think that the graphic design program is excellent. The courses are highly regarded, well taught and rigorous. I am always impressed at the quality of the student work that is displayed each June.

“The co-op jobs are rewarding and give you the chance to travel with positions available inside and outside of the U.S. The co-op system which starts in the second year of the 5-year program is also a nice break from the academic schedule and potentially will lead into a full time job.” — click here for the source

“UC has an amazing program for design and architecture. She willl get a first rate education in that area.

“Secondly, in today’s economy, kids need an “in” in order to get a good job. UC is the only school that you noted that will provide a full 6 quarters of experience as part of their coop. This is extraordinarily useful.She will get experience that rarely will be provided other students from other schools. She will make possible job contacts too because many interns get hired. I can’t emphasize that she consider UC enough.

“Third, UC has an amazing reputation for design and architecture. Don’t let the general reputation for the school fool you,which is considered tier three by US News. For Architecture and Design, it is considered akin to an ivy by those”in the know.” — click here for the source

Click here for more information about the Architecture Program at the University of Cincinnati!

Rice University

A short but sweet summary about the architecture program at Rice: “Rice’s architecture school is a six-year program. You do your first four years as a fully-incorporated undergraduate at Rice; you’re a member of a residential college just like any other student, except that you spend a lot of time in studio in Anderson Hall. After four years, you grauate with a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture. For your fifth year, Rice helps set you up with a preceptorship at an architecture firm somewhere. The most coveted are in places like Paris, Florence, and New York, but there are also some in less exciting places, like Houston. One of my really good friends is currently doing his preceptorship in Baltimore. Your sixth year, you come back to Rice, and you do one more year of studies, and then you graduate with a Bachelor of Architecture.” — click here for the source

Click here for more information about Rice University’s Architecture Program!

Columbia University

“[A]s for the architecture department – it is defintely a leading school, probably most known for being the most theoretical department within the top 5 (that now includes yale, harvard, penn, columbia and mit). the ugrad though is not the rigorous B.Arch nor does it come with a combined M.Arch program as of yet. but of my friends who got their BA in Architecture many are at top programs or working for top firms (SOM, RAMSA, etc.).” — click here for the source

A student’s freshmen experience: “As for the experience, well, it’s rigorous. It’s a lot of credits. And they aren’t gimmes. You don’t really start the program until your sophomore year (usually there isn’t room for freshmen in the introductory “first year” studios). The hours are brutal. You spend a good deal of your free time and nights in the studio. Your non-architecture friends don’t understand why you’re always so busy/tired/sleep deprived/unavailable. Sometime around 4 in the morning you’ll start sharing too much information with your studio mates. Some of the professors are slightly insane, in the way that artistic people can be a little eccentric. It’ll be much the same at a program like Cornell. Maybe a little less studio time than Cornell. Just remember, the sleep monster comes for all alike. That being said, as miserable as studio life can be, I’ve never felt a sense of camaraderie like that since.” — click here for the source

“The Columbia undergraduate program really focuses and creating broadly educated individuals. So in the architecture program you will not take studio courses till your junior year. I would call it an architecture lite program. It will give you a good taste of architecture, but most graduate schools will treat it like an english degree and expect you to go three years for your MArch. When you graduate you will be a very well educated individual, but with perhaps less architectural specific skills. It is a great school.” — click here for the source

Click here for more information about the Architecture Program at Columbia University!

University of Notre Dame

“ND is a traditional architecture school. Focus is on Roman architecture, etc, and not modern architecture (this does not mean that no modern architects have come from ND though, the focus is on traditional arch). This maybe a problem for some, but is great for those who want to learn the basic rules of architecture.

“Unlike most arch. programs which start studio first year and have an extremely compact schedule starting from 1st semester, ND does things a little different. First year is basically to get a foundation and take general ed classes (with some classes like drawing, arch. history worked in). Second year starts studio and a more involved arch. study. Third year is spent in Rome!! It is an amazing experience for what I am told and is great in terms of learning the traditional arch. Fourth year is using the things you learned in Rome and fifth year is basically a major thesis or project.” — click here for the source

Click here for more information about the Architecture Program at the University of Notre Dame!

Syracuse University

A student reviews another student planning to shift course to architecture at Syracuse: “I applied to the School of Architecture myself and frankly, Syracuse, overall, is not as respected. It used to be, but due to some financial mismanagement in the past, the school has gone down a little. However, Syracuse has one of the top architecture programs in the nation. Therefore, do not be misguided by what others say, as there’s a huge gap between expected stats of architecture applicants and those of the other applicants.

To be honest, your stats are not so competitive. There’s no significant upward trend in your GPA and your SAT scores are below average. Although architects are not expected to be mathematicians, they must have a firm knowledge of mathematics and I personally think that your math score is too low. Plus, your history of ECs worsens the chances. I see that you’ve participated in numerous activities; however, none of them continued for years. What the committee looks for is your level of persistence, not the number of activities you’ve done. They rather prefer someone with one or two activities, in which they have participated from 9th/10th to 12th grade.” — click here for the source

Click here for more information about the Architecture Program of Syracuse University!

If you plan on attending any one of the best architecture schools listed above, then you should boost your chances of getting accepted by building a winning art portfolio! This can be achieved through the help of “The Admission Insider” Karen Kesteloot. She has helped high school senior improve their art skills to create a portfolio that got them into their programs of choice in college.

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