The Architecture Program provides the educational foundation for intellectually aware and self-realizing architecture professionals. We promote collaboration and engagement through excellence in design research and creative scholarship.

Program Description

The 120-credit BSD in Architecture leads directly to the 2-year M.Arch, a NAAB accredited professional degree (required to become an architect) emphasizing design and research geared towards real and emerging challenges facing the built environment.

Architects shape the physical environment to give expression to the values and beliefs of a culture and its people. When a client explains to an architect his or her desires for a building, he or she is also describing his or her values and priorities. It is these beliefs, and those of the architect, that are communicated by architecture. Like most endeavors in the arts and humanities, architects are concerned with forms of expression and the content of a particular message. However, what separates architecture from most other forms of communication is its sheer size, the longevity of its statement and its mass appeal.

Simply, architects design buildings. Architects visualize a building but do not directly produce it. They visualize the future through models and drawings. These tools are used to communicate their ideas to others, especially to clients. The architect is the person who creatively envisions a product and then plans for the joining of materials and technique to produce the desired intention. An architect’s process extends from the broad conceptualization to the details of construction and fabrication.

Accreditation: NAAB

In the United States, most registration boards require a degree from an accredited professional degree program as a prerequisite for licensure. The National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB), which is the sole agency authorized to accredit professional degree programs in architecture offered by institutions with U.S. regional accreditation, recognizes three types of degrees: the Bachelor of Architecture, the Master of Architecture, and the Doctor of Architecture. A program may be granted an eight-year term, an eight-year term with conditions, or a two-year term of continuing accreditation, or a three-year term of initial accreditation, depending on the extent of its conformance with established education standards.

Doctor of Architecture and Master of Architecture degree programs may require a non-accredited undergraduate degree in architecture for admission. However, the non-accredited degree is not, by itself, recognized as an accredited degree.

The University of Nebraska College of Architecture offers the following NAAB-accredited degree program(s):

  • 2-year M.Arch (prerequisite: undergraduate degree in Architecture + 58 credits for degree)
  • 3-year M.Arch (prerequisite: undergraduate degree in any field + 92 credits hours for degree)

Here at UNL, the Bachelor of Science in Design is a pre-professional degree and a necessary component of the professional program which culminates with the Master of Architecture degree. The Master of Architecture degree is the first professional degree. The professional Master of Architecture degree is fully accredited by the National Architectural Accreditation Board (NAAB).