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Master of Science in Architecture – Concentration in Sustainable Design

Master of Science in Architecture – Concentration in Sustainable Design

The Master of Science in Architecture with a concentration in sustainable design [MS ARCH in Sustainable Design] is an advanced post-professional degree for students focusing on the research and design of sustainable design at multiple scales, ranging from energy-efficient buildings to better neighborhood design and smart growth. 

Before air-conditioning became ubiquitous, designing with the local climate in mind was not a virtue but a necessity. Passive design – taking advantage of the cyclical nature of the sun and maximizing natural ventilation – was widely practiced for centuries before the phrase was coined.  In the years since the World Commission on Environment and Development defined sustainability as “meeting today’s needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs,” we have better understood that technological innovations can present both problems and solutions. Taking advantage of our location in Houston, the world’s energy capital, this program works closely with the UH Energy research group, where academics collaborate with industry partners on multi-disciplinary projects promoting a better built environment.

Degree Plan

This degree is a design-based program centered on the studio for students already possessing a professional degree in architecture, urban planning, urban design, landscape architecture, or related design fields. It integrates aspects of sustainability, building science, design technology, architectural history and precedent, urban design, planning, and environmental thinking within the context of the design studio to provide new methodologies for envisioning sustainable design. The program prepares students for design-based research and professional practice at the cutting edge of sustainable design. The two-semester program consists of 36 academic credits in consecutive fall and spring sessions.

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