Architecture (Energy Perf/Climate Responsive Arch), MS

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Are you interested in solving wicked problems in new ways? Are you fascinated with how sustainability, materials and human environments interact? Then you may find this Design School program a fit. Work with exceptional faculty, use cutting edge technology and address some of our world's most pressing challenges.

The MS program in architecture with a concentration in energy performance and climate-responsive architecture educates students to become experts in energy-efficient building design and energy technology.

Courses in this concentration establish a basic core of knowledge of the principles of the natural energies available at the building boundary due to climate and site; thermal and optic behavior of building materials and components; passive and low-energy architectural systems for heating, cooling and lighting; and appropriate integration with mechanical systems. Additional courses are available to support advanced study and research in a variety of related specialties.

At A Glance

Architecture (Energy Perf/Climate Responsive Arch), MS

Plan of study

The Plan of study is the required curriculum to complete this graduate level program.

View Plan of Study

Degree requirements

Required Core (21 credit hours)

Electives (3-6 credit hours)

Culminating Experience (3-6 credit hours)
ATE 593 Applied Project (3)
ATE 599 Thesis (6)

Additional Curriculum Information
The applied project option consists of six credit hours of electives and three credit hours of ATE 593. The thesis option consists of three credit hours of electives and six credit hours of ATE 599.

Students should see the academic unit for an approved course list.

Admission requirements

Applicants must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate College and the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor's or master's degree from a regionally accredited institution in one of the professions or fields of study outlined below:

  • a five- or six-year National Architectural Accrediting Board-accredited professional degree in architecture (BArch or MArch)*
  • a four-year Bachelor of Science in landscape architecture or a master's degree in landscape architecture which must be granted by an institution that offers the Landscape Architectural Accreditation Board-accredited degree program in landscape architecture
  • an engineering degree (BS or MS) with a background in building sustainability issues**
  • a science degree (BS or MS) with a background in building sustainability issues

*Applicants should refer to the NAAB website for more information about the BArch or MArch.
**Mechanical and civil engineering and construction majors are particularly suited for application to the BS or MS program in engineering.

Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program, or applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in an applicable master's degree program.

All applicants must submit:

  1. graduate admission application and application fee
  2. official transcripts
  3. official copy of GRE scores
  4. portfolio; or, a writing sample from applicants who have a science background
  5. statement of intent
  6. contact information for two references
  7. proof of English proficiency

Additional Application Information
An applicant whose native language is not English must provide proof of English proficiency regardless of current residency. The minimum score for admission to the program is 80 (internet-based) or 550 (paper-based) on the TOEFL or an overall band score of 6.5 on the IELTS. Other information can be found at

Unofficial copies of GRE scores are not accepted. More information is available at the GRE website or at

The portfolio or writing sample, statement of intent, and contact information for three references must be submitted via Slideroom.

Admission to the program is selective. Admission to the program cannot be deferred. Students must enroll in the semester for which they are admitted; otherwise, they need to go through the entire application process again during the year for which they are applying.

A personal interview is not required; however, a candidate wishing to visit the school is welcome and should make arrangements by contacting The Design School.

Applicants should see the program website for application deadlines and admission terms.

Information about this program

Visit The Design School website for full details.