Undergraduate Degree Programs

The College of Architecture offers course work leading to two undergraduate degrees: the Bachelor of Science in Architecture and the Bachelor of Design in Architecture. The requirements for both degrees are the same through the junior year. Students then choose which degree program they wish to pursue. Further information on the particular requirements and curricular structures of the undergraduate degree programs is listed below.

Students in the College of Architecture select, in consultation with their advisers, a course of study that satisfies the formal degree requirements, addresses their interests, and best meets their overall goals.

Students begin with a Sam Fox School foundation drawing course taken with first-year students in the College of Art and two design courses particular to architecture. They take required courses in the College of Arts & Sciences and electives in architecture and the Sam Fox School.

For the Bachelor of Science degree, students continue to study architecture in depth through the senior year. For those in the Bachelor of Design program, the fourth year offers flexibility in studying outside of architecture or pursuing other electives in architecture and art.

Continuing for graduate study years:

Students receiving the Bachelor of Science in Architecture degree can apply to two-year Master of Architecture programs. Students receiving the Bachelor of Design degree with a major in architecture usually apply to three-year Master of Architecture programs (refer to Graduate Degree Programs below).

If a student enters the College of Architecture as a first-year student, he or she may complete both the bachelor's and the master's programs in a minimum of six years, in a professional degree structure called the 4+2. Using the Bachelor of Science in Architecture degree as the initial basis, the 4+2 curriculum allows a student to spend four years as an undergraduate and two years as a graduate student in the Master of Architecture curriculum (refer to the 4+2 Program information below).

College of Architecture Requirements

Students must fulfill the following degree requirements:  

A. Requirements

  1. Writing I: Every student must demonstrate proficiency in reading and writing the English language and must begin to develop mature skills in framing and revising arguments by completing course work as determined by the Department of English with a grade of C- or better. Transfer students must fulfill the Writing 1 requirement by taking CWP 100 College Writing 1 or by review of a writing portfolio. For more information, visit the College Writing Program website.
  2. Math 131 Calculus I (Natural Sciences/Math) with a C- or better
  3. Physics 117A General Physics I (Natural Sciences/Math) with a C- or better
  4. Humanities (3 units): Humanities courses examine the human condition as it has been documented and expressed in both past and contemporary times. This area includes courses from literature (both in English and other languages), Classics, History, Philosophy, and Religious Studies, as well as some courses in the creative arts such as Dance, Drama, Music and Writing. Courses designated "Art HUM" fulfill a humanities requirement.
  5. Social and Behavioral Sciences (3 units): These courses use qualitative and quantitative observation to explore the social environment, relationships with society, and forms of human behavior. This area includes courses from Anthropology, Economics, Education, International and Area Studies, Political Science, Psychological & Brain Sciences, and courses from other areas, including interdisciplinary studies. Courses designated "Art SSC" fulfill the Social and Behavioral Sciences requirement.
  6. Art History (Art-Arch 113 History of Western Art, Architecture and Design)
  7. Art History (Art-Arch 215 Introduction to Modern Art, Architecture and Design)
  8. Courses in Arts & Sciences (18 units)*
  9. Courses in Architecture, Art, Design; Arts & Sciences; Business; or Engineering (9 units)*

*This excludes physical education, lessons, independent studies, internships, Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate or transfer credit.

B. Foundation Courses

  1. XCORE 101 Drawing I
  2. XCORE 181 Practices in Architecture + Art + Design and XCORE 182 Practices in Architecture + Art + Design

C. Sam Fox Commons, Architecture, Art or Design Electives

Every student is required to take at least 6 units of Sam Fox Commons (X10 300-level), Architecture, Art or Design interdisciplinary courses.

D. Major Required Courses: Bachelor of Science in Architecture

ARCH 111Introduction to Design Processes I3
ARCH 112Introduction to Design Processes II3
ARCH 211BIntroduction to Design Processes III4.5
ARCH 212BIntroduction to Design Processes IV4.5
ARCH 311Architectural Design I6
ARCH 312Architectural Design II6
ARCH 411Architectural Design III6
ARCH 412Architectural Design IV6
ARCH 3283Architectural History I: Premodern Encounters in World Architecture3
or ARCH 3284 Architectural History II: Architecture Since 1880
ARCH 333Case Studies in 20th-Century Architecture3
ARCH 438Environmental Systems I3
ARCH 445Building Systems3
ARCH 447AStructures I3
ARCH 448AStructures II3
One History/Theory or Urban Issues elective3
Electives3
Total units63

E. Major Required Courses: Bachelor of Design, Major in Architecture

ARCH 111Introduction to Design Processes I3
ARCH 112Introduction to Design Processes II3
ARCH 211BIntroduction to Design Processes III4.5
ARCH 212BIntroduction to Design Processes IV4.5
ARCH 311Architectural Design I6
ARCH 312Architectural Design II6
ARCH 3283Architectural History I: Premodern Encounters in World Architecture3
or ARCH 3284 Architectural History II: Architecture Since 1880
ARCH 333Case Studies in 20th-Century Architecture3
ARCH 445Building Systems3
ARCH 499Senior Capstone in Architecture3
Architecture Elective (300-level or above)3
Electives21
Total units63

Typical Freshman and Sophomore Programs for Architecture Students

The following typical programs for the freshman and sophomore years are based on the requirements of the College of Arts & Sciences and on the prerequisite introductory architecture sequences for the undergraduate degrees in architecture:

Freshman Year

ARCH 111
ARCH 112
Introduction to Design Processes I
and Introduction to Design Processes II
6
XCORE 101Drawing I3
XCORE 181Practices in Architecture + Art + Design1
XCORE 182Practices in Architecture + Art + Design1
Math 131Calculus I3
CWP 100College Writing 13
Art-Arch 113History of Western Art, Architecture and Design3
Art-Arch 215Introduction to Modern Art, Architecture and Design3
Academic Requirements/Electives9
Total units32

Sophomore Year

Physics 117AGeneral Physics I (special lab required: 0 units)3
ARCH 211BIntroduction to Design Processes III4.5
ARCH 212BIntroduction to Design Processes IV4.5
ARCH 3283Architectural History I: Premodern Encounters in World Architecture3
Academic Requirements/Electives15
Total units30

If a student plans to enter the architectural design sequence ARCH 311ARCH 312 in the fall of the junior year, the student must complete 60 units of academic work by the end of the sophomore year.

Additional Requirements

Each undergraduate student shall successfully complete 122 units and at least 30 units in advanced courses (numbered 300, 400 or 500). The 30 units in advanced courses may include the minimum number of advanced units required by the major areas of concentration. Courses required for the major (refer to College of Architecture Requirements) must be passed with a grade of C- or better.

Each student shall spend at least three semesters in full-time residence (at least 12 units per semester) at Washington University. Unless excused by the dean of the College of Architecture, the student must earn the last 30 units at Washington University. The dean of the College of Architecture may waive the full-time residence requirement for students who are employed full-time and have completed at least two years of college.

Regulations

A. No more than eight courses, exclusive of general studies courses, may be taken pass/fail.

B. Students may enroll for credit in only one supervised performance course in any semester. Students may earn a maximum of 12 units toward the degree in supervised performance and/or in group and individual performance courses combined.

The 4+2 Program: Bachelor of Science in Architecture and Master of Architecture

The College of Architecture's Bachelor of Science degree curriculum leads directly into the Graduate School of Architecture & Urban Design's two-year Master of Architecture degree program, providing for the attainment of the accredited professional degree in six years.

Students who have satisfactorily completed, or who are about to complete, the Bachelor of Science requirements can apply to the Graduate School of Architecture & Urban Design's Master of Architecture degree program by submitting an application to the Graduate Admissions Office and by requesting a review of their undergraduate work by the Graduate Admissions Committee. Admission is not automatic, however, and requires approval from the Graduate Admissions Committee. A portfolio is not required for students in the senior year of the Bachelor of Science curriculum at the time of application.

Bachelor of Science in Architecture students thus accepted into the two-year Master of Architecture degree program are required to complete the following courses to fulfill the requirements of the MArch 2 degree:

ARCH 511Architectural Design V6
ARCH 512Architectural Design VI6
ARCH 538CAdvanced Building Systems3
ARCH 580Design Thinking: Research and Design Methods3
ARCH 611Architectural Design VII6
ARCH 616Degree Project6
ARCH 646Professional Practice I3
Total units33

Additionally, students entering the two-year Master of Architecture degree program with the college's Bachelor of Science degree must complete course work not addressed during the Bachelor of Science curriculum, as follows:

  1. Completion of both ARCH 438 Environmental Systems I and ARCH 439 Environmental Systems II;
  2. Completion of at least one elective course in Architectural History and Theory; and
  3. Completion of at least one elective course in Urban Issues.

Students in the MArch 2 degree program have 18 units (six courses) of additional elective credits to complete.

Information

For more information about graduate degree programs and requirements, contact the Director of Graduate Admissions, Graduate School of Architecture & Urban Design, Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts, Washington University in St. Louis, Campus Box 1079, One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO 63130-4899, or send an email to: samfoxschool@wustl.edu.

Combined Studies

Washington University offers students the option to study across disciplines and to take advantage of the wide range of courses available. Students may choose to major in architecture and minor in another subject; major in architecture and choose a second major in another area within the College of Arts & Sciences; or major in architecture and choose a second major in an area from a different undergraduate school.