Architecture Joint Degree (MArch I or II)

Students in the joint master’s program earn two degrees:

  • The Master of Environmental Management at the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies (1.5 years)

    Students in this master’s program analyze environmental processes, policies and management issues through the lenses of the biological, physical and social sciences. Students develop a balanced and complex understanding of the relationships among science, resource management, and policy.

  • And one of two master’s degrees at the School of Architecture.

    The Master of Architecture I (2.5 years)
    This program is designed for students with undergraduate liberal arts degrees who seek their first professional architecture degree. The curriculum provides a disciplined approach to the fundamentals of architecture. (The program is certified by the National Architectural Accrediting Board, which identifies programs that fulfill requirements for state licensure in the United States.)

    or

    The Master of Architecture II (1.5 years)
    This course of study is designed for professional architects who seek a master’s-level degree that will deepen their theoretical knowledge of the field. Students develop an understanding of architectural design and its meaning within a broad cultural and social context.

Pursuing a joint degree reduces the term of study by one year:

  • The Master of Environmental Management-Master of Architecture I program requires four years instead of five.
  • The Master of Environmental Management-Master of Architecture II program requires three years instead of four.

Director of the Joint-Degree Program

Alexander Felson [Profile], Assistant Professor, School of Forestry & Environmental Studies; Critic, Yale School of Architecture.

Senior Faculty Advisors

D. Michelle Addington, D.Des., associate professor, SOA. Research focuses: discrete systems, technology transfer and smart materials.

Gaboury Benoit, Ph.D., professor of environmental chemistry and of environmental engineering (FES), co-director of the Hixon Center for Urban Ecology; director of the Center for Coastal and Watershed Systems. Research focus: the behavior, transport and fate of chemicals in natural waters, soils, sediments and biota.

Faculty Advisors

James W. Axley, Ph.D., professor of architecture and engineering, School of Architecture (SOA). Research focuses: structural and environmental technology.

Thomas E. Graedel, Ph.D., Clifton R. Musser Professor of Industrial Ecology (FES); professor of chemical engineering and of geology and geophysics; director of the Center for Industrial Ecology. Research focus: industrial ecology.

Stephen R. Kellert, Ph.D., Tweedy/Ordway Professor of Social Ecology, School of Forestry & Environmental Studies (FES); co-director of the Hixon Center for Urban Ecology. Research focus: biophilia and biophilic design and their impact on human health, productivity, and well-being.

Curriculum

The Master of Environmental Management-Master of Architecture I degree:
Students will spend their first year taking the foundation courses at the School of Architecture. For students who do not have significant pre-architecture training, instruction begins in the summer with a required six-week introductory course. All incoming students attend a week-long technical course in the summer that introduces them to the wood and metal shops. In the fall, students begin coursework that provides a sequence of problem-solving exercises involving basic and architectural design, building technology, freehand and computer-assisted drawing, and an introduction to design methodologies. They also study architectural theory and urban design.

During the second term and until mid-June, students take part in a community project, designing and building affordable housing. Then in August, all students attend the required three-week technical skills course offered by the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. In the second year, joint-degree students continue to focus on design but take courses in environmental studies.

Beginning in the third year, the focus shifts to the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. Students learn how to address complex ecological issues, grounding their analysis in an understanding of the relationships among science, resource management, and policy. Although third-year students take most of their courses at the environment school, they also continue studies at the School of Architecture. During the third summer, they work at an internship related to their studies in environmental management.

The fourth-year curriculum includes an advanced sustainable design studio taught collaboratively by faculty members from both schools. To graduate, students must assemble a portfolio of work from their studio courses at the School of Architecture and also complete a capstone master’s project at the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies.

The Master of Environmental Management-Master of Architecture II degree:
Students begin in the summer with a week-long technical course introducing them to the wood and metal shops. They also attend a summer digital media orientation course. Coursework for this program is divided fairly evenly between the two schools and provides more time for electives than does the Architecture I program. Third-year students take part in the collaboratively taught advanced sustainable design studio. Students must submit a portfolio of work done in studio courses at the School of Architecture and complete a capstone master’s project at the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies.

Career Paths
Licensed architects conversant in environmental management and green design will be well prepared to follow any number of career paths. A graduate of the joint-degree program might work as an environmental designer; an architect; a green design consultant; a director of building operations and maintenance; a carbon management consultant; an urban planner; a construction waste consultant; a policy analyst; a LEED consultant; an interior designer; a transportation consultant; an urban ecologist; or a sustainability coordinator in industry, academia or government. Other aspects of the field of restorative environmental design will emerge in the coming years.

Admissions

Who should apply
We seek students who are creative, intellectually agile, and adept at collaborating with others. They should possess the analytical skills to integrate information from the broad spectrum of disciplines that underpin restorative environmental design. They should have a vision of what they can contribute to this emerging field.

Students hoping to pursue the joint-degree program must be admitted to each school independently.

What applicants must provide
Both schools require scores for the general test of the GRE exam (administered by the Educational Testing Service). Applicants whose first language is not English must take the TOEFL exam. Both schools also require an official undergraduate transcript, three letters of reference, a personal statement and a resume or curriculum vitae. The School of Architecture requires applicants to submit a portfolio.

Academic prerequisites
Both schools require a bachelor’s degree or equivalent from an accredited college. The Master of Architecture II program requires a professional degree in architecture, normally a five-year bachelor of architecture degree.

The School of Forestry & Environmental Studies admissions committee accepts students from a wide variety of backgrounds. Most applicants have spent several years working before deciding to return to school. The strongest applicants will have completed coursework in college-level mathematics and in the biological and physical sciences and/or the social sciences. For specifics, see the school’s F&ES Admissions website.

Applicants to the Master of Architecture I program must have completed elementary calculus, a studio art course and some study of the history of art and/or architecture. For more on prerequisites for both architecture programs, consult the Yale School of Architecture Admissions website.

How to apply: logistics
Because students must be accepted at both schools, prospective students may follow one of three routes in applying.

  1. Prospective students may apply to both schools simultaneously, indicating on each application that they hope to enroll in the joint-degree program. In most cases, admitted students will begin their studies at the School of Architecture.
  2. Students who begin their studies toward the Master of Architecture I may apply to the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies by January of their first or second year at the School of Architecture. Those studying toward the Master of Architecture II must apply by January of their first year.
  3. Students attending the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies may apply to the School of Architecture by January of their first year.
How to apply: forms
To apply to the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, consult the FES Admissions website.

Mailing address:
Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies
Office of Admissions
205 Prospect Street
New Haven, CT 06511, USA

Phone: (800) 825-0330
Email: fesinfo@yale.edu
To apply to the School of Architecture,
consult the Admissions website.

Mailing address:
Yale School of Architecture
P.O. Box 208242
New Haven, CT 06520-8242, USA

Phone: 203 432-2288
Email: gradarch.admissions@yale.edu
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