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Architecture Major

The Architecture major is a pre-professional program leading to a B.A. degree within the four-year curriculum of the College of Arts and Sciences. Its primary goal is to introduce students to architecture as a cultural practice that structures both the physical and social environment. In addition to core courses in architectural history, analysis and design, Architecture majors will be introduced to a wide range of disciplines and creative studio practices that contribute to an architect’s breadth of knowledge and problem-solving skills.

The Architecture major also prepares students for graduate programs in architecture and the allied fields such as landscape architecture, interior design, urban design, urban planning, historic preservation, art and architectural history. Students interested in moving to careers in civil engineering, real estate, or working for international, public, or non-governmental development agencies are encouraged to enroll in the Architecture major in addition to USD's programs in Engineering, Environmental Studies, Business Administration, Sociology, Ethnic Studies or International Relations.

Degree Requirements for Architecture Major


Lower-division Requirements (17 Units)

1. Foundations in Architectural Design (8 units):

ARCH 101 Introduction to Architecture Studio
ARCH 102 Architectural Design Studio I

2. Foundations in the History and Theory of Architecture (6 units):

ARTH 136 The Year 1500: A Global History of Art and Architecture
ARTH 138 Art and Visual Culture

ARCH 121 Introduction to Modern Architecture

3. One Lower-Division Course in Studio Arts (3 units):

ARTV 101 Fundamentals of Drawing
ARTV 103 Design Foundations
ARTV 104 Foundations in Form, Space, and Time
ARTV 108 Introduction to New Media in Art
ARTV 160 Photography
THEA 220 Fundamentals of Theatrical Design


Upper-division Requirements (30 units)

1. Architectural Design (4 units)

ARCH 301 Architectural Design Studio II

2. History and Theory of Architecture and the City (9 units from):

ARCH 321 City and Utopia
ARCH 322 Contemporary Architecture
ARCH 323 Memory, Monument, Museum
ARCH 330 Special Topics in History of Architecture
ARCH 340 Biography of World Cities

3. Elective from Outside the Department of Art (3 units from):

ENVI 312 Introduction to GIS
ENVI 313 Geospatial Information Systems for Organizations
ENVI 314 Introduction to Maps and Spatial Data Analysis
ENVI 315 Geographic Information Systems
ENVI 420 Introduction to Remote Sensing (4 units)
ENVI 485 Environmental Geology (4 units)
ETHN 361 Immigration at the U.S.-Mexico Border: Ethnicity, Race and Gender
HIST 334 European Art and Architecture in Context
HIST 390 Art and Architecture in California
POLS 342 Urban Politics
SOCI 363 The Modern Urban Community
SOCI 400 Introduction to Urban Planning
SOCI 450 Culture and the Metropolis
SOCI 455 Cities in a Global Context
THEA 305 Technical Theater with Lab (4 units)
THEA 320 Scenic Design

4. Upper Division Electives in Architecture, Visual Arts, Art History (at least 9 units from):

ARCH, ARTV, ARTH 301 or higher

5. Architectural Research and Thesis (5 units):

ARCH 302 Architectural Design Vertical Studio (4 units)
ARCH 495 Senior Project Studio Seminar (4 units)

ARCH 496 Senior Thesis in Architecture (1 unit)


Please refer to the University of San Diego Undergraduate Bulletin for your academic planning.