MSc Advanced Architectural Design – our new yearlong master’s programme

MSc Advanced Architectural Design – our new yearlong master’s programme


We are delighted to announce our new yearlong master’s programme: MSc Advanced Architectural Design, in short, MSc Arch. If you would like to push the boundaries of your education by thinking and designing outside-the-box, MSc is for you. It is an innovative and personalised course for enthusiastic people with an undergraduate degree in architecture who wish to explore future opportunities in architecture, urbanism, design and creative industries. You will start in September 2021 and finish in September 2022! If you decide to complete Part 2, you will have the chance to apply to go straight into the second year of the Master of Architecture (MArch) at Queen’s.

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Further Details:

MSc Arch is an intensive programme for engaged students who would like to make the most of their time at Queen’s. The work produced throughout the year will be a collaborative effort between you, your year group, our academics and practicing architects. Because the course does not require you to meet prescription for qualification, it encourages you to work both within and beyond the realm of conventional architectural practice. We would like you to push the boundaries of your imagination and of architectural media.

You will work on modules including design, humanities and technology, questioning norms in architecture throughout. You will complete a major thesis project, the topic and methodology of which will be self-directed. You will be able to use the thesis as a means to experiment with new ideas, technologies and media, and as a gateway to future plans. The course encourages lateral thinking, problem solving, creativity and engagement with design in a self-critical process. It will address issues as diverse as our survival on the planet and alternative ways of thinking about what architecture can be and do. The MSc is interdisciplinary and inclusive by nature.

You will spend the year on our university campus celebrating its 175th year with people from around the world designing, collaborating and producing. Queen’s clubs and facilities including the Student Union, Queen’s Sport and Queen’s Film Theatre will also provide excellent opportunities to make friends outside of your discipline.

You will be based in Belfast, a growing city known for its industrial design heritage on one hand and its vibrant arts culture and creative industries on the other. You will enjoy a healthy staff to student ratio, good studios where you will have your own space and excellent workshops for physical and digital manufacturing.

Now, more than ever, our societies demand innovative designers and creative problem solvers to propose solutions to the challenges we face in a complex contemporary world – health and well-being, climate change, forced migration, public safety and increasing urbanisation, among others. Our school is renowned for award-winning, innovative research and teaching that is academically rigorous, critically informed, design-led and interdisciplinary. In all of this endeavour we seek to develop architecture’s voice in addressing these challenges.

The MSc Architecture programme provides a scaffold for our students to develop their own personal position within the broad culture of architecture, and in doing so, contribute to the ongoing debate that shapes the profession and our world. Our concerns range from the scale of craft and construction, material intelligences and sustainable prototyping to the mapping and analysis of urban, territorial and global conditions. In all of this architectural media play a crucial role as does developing a self-critical understanding of how each individual works as a designer.

The MSc Architecture is a studio-based programme, underscoring design and design processes as the core concerns, challenging our students to be experimental both in their design methodologies/analyses and their architectural proposals. The one-year course comprises of three semesters. The staff cohort is composed of a diverse spectrum of esteemed practitioners and innovative academics supported by external consultants beyond Queen’s, providing a further dimension to a rich learning environment. In this context, the students are encouraged to push the limits of the profession as well as their personal capabilities.


A digital resource communicating the work of Architecture at Queen's University Belfast